The nondescript white building on West Davis may seem a little sketchy, but there’s nothing to fear at Tradewinds Social Club — really, manager Melissa Miller says.

“People are afraid to come down here, but our bar is so safe.” If that doesn’t offer some comfort, the dive bar’s gourmet pizza will. The owners make their own sauce on Oak Cliff Pizza crust with several options for toppings. For a bit of playful contrast, perhaps, it’s served on a silver platter.

A pepperoni, tomato and basil pizza and beer / Photo by Mark Davis

First timers should try Tradewinds’ signature blue shot. It’s a rum-based drink, and that’s about all we know. “If you tell people what’s in it, they won’t drink it,” Miller says. “But once they try it, they love it.”

Tradewinds opened in 1968 with a very different vibe. “It used to be an old school honky tonk bar. It wasn’t very lively.”

Today, it’s a popular hangout for people from all walks of life. Every week, local bands and DJs perform, and once the owners get the projector working again, they’ll bring back “dinner and a B-movie” nights. But if you’re looking for a quiet night at the bar, stop by on Sunday when happy hour is all day, and no events are scheduled.

Tradewinds Social Club
Davis & Westmoreland

Three more dives in Oak Cliff:

1 Wingfield’s Breakfast & Burgers
For a huge burger with much acclaim, try Wingfield’s, a tiny storefront with no seating. You just walk up and take your order to go. The line can get pretty long, so call ahead.
Beckley & Elmore

2 Charco Broiler Steak House
This no-frills steak house has become a fixture in Oak Cliff, serving what are likely the best baked potatoes in Dallas.
Jefferson & Bishop

3 Cesar’s Tacos
It may look a little dingy from the outside, but here you can get some pretty decent tacos on the cheap.
Davis & Hartsdale