The Adolphus announces the return of Rodeo Bar, the quintessential Texas tavern bar from the 80’s, re-opening late fall at the corner of Commerce St. and S. Akard St. 

The popular Downtown destination was originally named after Walt Garrison, a native-born Texan best known for his stint with the Dallas Cowboys and as a professional rodeo rider. With Garrison as the inspiration, the space expressed a true Texas swagger. Rodeo Bar was originally opened in 1981 with over 4 decades of service.

The newly restored Rodeo Bar will maintain the heartbeat of what locals loved about the former concept with its refined grit and playful authenticity. The spirit of this enduring bar space has received a thoughtful refresh including an expansion, The Back Room, as well as an updated food menu and design enhancements.

“Reopening a legacy bar with an already built-in narrative, it was critical that we preserve and honor the heart and soul of the original concept,” says Justin Fields, Senior Vice President of Restaurants Bars & Retail at Makeready, the management company that designed and will operate the new Rodeo Bar. “Quite literally we asked ourselves, how do we retain the past, while setting the stage for the next 40 years.”

“We loved the idea of an old-school Texas Tavern where you walk up, order swiftly, and get back to eating and drinking. This is a no-nonsense bar with friendly service serving approachable fare influenced by Tex-Mex and traditional Texas cuisine.”

The menu was created with a playful approach to comfort food, and a nostalgic appreciation for Americana fare. Smash-style burgers will be a big focus on the menu as a nod to the original Rodeo Bar, which many regulars thought to have had one of the best burgers in town during its time. A “blue plate special”, another legacy of the former concept, will rotate daily and feature items such as brisket, pork chops, and jalapeño sausage. Guests will notice a casual, yet elevated, take on Texas classics throughout the entire menu.

“We want Rodeo Bar to be known for its food, but also be cognizant of the fact that it is a bar, and a casual bar at that,” explains Chef Charles Olalia, Culinary Director for Makeready. “The menu will have many items you might expect at a bar, such as burgers, chips & queso, and sandwiches and we are paying homage to these classics by doing them right.”

The bar program will mirror the food with a laid back, no-frills approach to cocktails, beer and wine in a relaxed environment.

Fields says, “With a playful, laid back branding with a sense of humor, we are here to deliver nostalgic moments with incredibly well executed drink and food. One could say our goal is to also be your Cheers! – where everybody knows your name. We look forward to bringing back old customers while becoming a favorite destination for newcomers.

The 95-seat tavern boasts a mixture of vintage and refurbished booths, as well as tables and seats, with the intention of maintaining the classic Texas-vibe of the original concept.

Rodeo Bar will be located at 1321 Commerce St, Dallas, TX 75202 and will be open seven days a week for lunch and dinner. 

Casual Dining, Industry News