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Ruins Will Bring Agave Cocktails and Tropical Vibes to Deep Ellum

Look forward to a menu of tequila, mezcal, rum and Central American cuisine

The lively bar area of Armoury D.E. with artwork by Joey Schaefer.
Credit Rico DeLeon

A new bar called Ruins, from the owners of uber-popular Hungarian bar-restaurant Armoury D.E., is coming to Deep Ellum.

The new venture is set to open its doors this spring at 2653 Commerce Street, bringing a lot of Mexican cuisine with Caribbean and South American elements, and a “library” of agave-based drinks with a large rum selection thrown in for good measure. The bar takes its name from the Eastern European trend of opening bars in dilapidated buildings, called “ruin bars,” according to part-owner Peter Novotny. “They’ve got bullet holes in the walls, mortar rounds going through them. They’re neighborhood bars and they throw a lot of artwork into them. It’s very bohemian,” he says.

Vintage Havana-inspired interiors at Ruins will welcome guests to the indoor-outdoor space that will seat 115 inside (mostly at tables) and another 25 on the fenced-in front patio. An adjacent music venue will be accessible from the bar-restaurant, and will throw larger shows than Armoury’s backyard patio has been able to accommodate.

The menu of mostly Oaxacan dishes with Caribbean and South American influences is being developed by chef and part-owner of Ruins, Abram Vargas. At Armoury D.E., Vargas has earned praise from diners and critics for dishes like charred octopus simmered in white wine, along with recreating Hungarian dishes from Novotny’s arsenal of family recipes. Novotny will lead the cocktail and beer program, focusing heavily on mezcal, tequila, and rum drinks. The vibe for the new spot was inspired by a trip the team took to Oaxaca to see agave production first-hand.

“I love rum and I love agave, and we thought the two things would be a good match,” says Novotny. “There’s so much good stuff from all over the place, we want to incorporate all of it. It all mixes well together.”

Ruins will be open for lunch, dinner, and late-night service beginning in April. Stay tuned for an official opening date and first look at the menu and inside.

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