Fireplace Lounge

Dallas, Texas

Johnnie's Tavern - Columbus Dive Bar - Exterior

In Short

Just off of I-30 east of downtown Dallas, the Fireplace Lounge lives up to the promise of its lofty title, a white rectangle hallway of a dive bar that sits in the middle of a plot of land that conjures up drinking in a rural friend’s backyard. Though a touch of update can be seen here and there within the space, the faded ceiling, the ample bar signs and, yes, an actual fireplace make Fireplace Lounge perhaps the purest Dallas dive bar experience.

Field Rating

10

out of 10

Everything a dive bar next to a highway should be.

Field Note

As a writer, it is important to be aware of biases and shortcomings, and this reviewer will own up to a soft spot for dive bars that adopt classy sounding titles. The Fireplace Lounge is a Dallas dive bar that borrows phrasing that might indicate drinking among deep mahogany woodwork but instead offers maybe the best pure dive bar experience in the city.

For starters, Fireplace Lounge feels a bit like drinking in your cousin’s front yard, the location just off of Dallas’ stretch of I-30. Seen from the interstate, it is a bit difficult to figure out if Fireplace Lounge is actually open, which for any dive bar is a great sign. Fireplace Lounge is little more than a white rectangle in the middle of a large lot, gravel parking surrounding the building. The structure is roughly speaking an abnormally wide hallway that happens to include a bar, one door on each short wall of the dive bar rectangle.

The sign provides the only real indication that any kind of business operates here, itself seemingly broken, the words Fireplace Lounge perched atop a metal pole.

The sign provides the only real indication that any kind of business operates here, itself seemingly broken, the words Fireplace Lounge perched atop a metal pole that looks like it once had a little more going on. The pole is rusted and connected to a long stretch of metal that connects to a separate pole, a contraption that I don’t understand and only adds to the allure of the Dallas dive bar from outside. Parking surrounds three exterior walls, the area in back instead a free form (loose term) patio, a collection of scattered tables and chairs.

All that preamble is to say that Fireplace Lounge is a legit dive bar from the exterior alone, let alone what turns out to be a pretty glorious interior space. And I know the first question on your mind, “is there, indeed, a fireplace here?” Mercifully and from the looks of the building, pretty improbably, the answer is yes, one wall almost hiding a small fireplace that comes to knee level. The setup seems to be ornamental in nature, a set of Christmas lights dipping in the fireplace.

Simply put, the space inside is dive bar perfect, a mixture of beer flags, strung lights, metal signs and a yellow, stucco-style roof that has certainly seen a night or two of heavy drinking. That’s not to say that a modern touch can’t be found inside, some fresh furniture and a refinished surface or two are evident, but on balance, this is dive bar original and untouched by time for quite awhile. The bar itself is a short, classic-style bar with room for a handful of stools and sporting red, white and blue fringe above. A wood grid of sorts has been crafted to house the bar’s liquor bottles in front of mirrored displays.

This is a Green Bay Packers bar, it turns out, and a shrine to the team can be seen directly behind the bar.

This is a Green Bay Packers bar, it turns out, and a shrine to the team can be seen directly behind the bar, Packers gear mingling with yet another set of Christmas lights. Packers merchandise can be found throughout the Fireplace Lounge, most notably a giant wood carving of the logo attached to the small ledge directly above the bar. A pool table can be found near the rear of the space, again amid a pretty haphazard collection of high and short tables and chairs.

On a beautiful Dallas day, it would be hard to find a better dive bar for a little day drinking. This is a dive bar set off of an interstate in the middle of a large plot of land surrounded by a gravel lot and a completely mismatched set of outdoor seating. Inside, the classy nature of a place called the Fireplace Lounge shines through in nothing less than an actual fireplace. In a word, the Fireplace Lounge is perfect, a Dallas dive bar akin to drinking on a cousin’s lawn in the best possible way.

Photos

The Basics

3122 Samuell Blvd
Dallas, TX 75223

Classification:
Neighborhood Bar

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