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2 festive Christmas pop-up bars bring holiday cheer to Austin

2 festive Christmas pop-up bars bring holiday cheer to Austin

Miracle bar pop up christmas cocktail
The Run Run Rudolph. Photo by Melissa Hom
Miracle bar pop up christmas cocktail
The Christmopolitan. Photo by Melissa Hom
Miracle bar pop up christmas cocktail
The Gingerbread Flip. Photo by Melissa Hom
Miracle bar pop up christmas cocktail
Miracle bar pop up christmas cocktail
Miracle bar pop up christmas cocktail

There are two types of people who celebrate Christmas. Some keep the season low-key, quietly celebrating the season with family and friends while others pull out the Rudolph onesies as soon as Daylight Savings Time ends.

Instead of fighting over the last flat screen at Best Buy on Black Friday, the latter will be at The Eleanor for the opening of the second annual Miracle on 5th Street. According to a release, the space at 307 W. 5th St. Ste. A, will be completely transformed into a winter wonderland from 4 pm- 2 am daily between November 23 and December 30.

The Capital City pop-up is the second annual edition of Miracle, a series that takes over the world’s buzziest bars with over-the-top Christmas decor, themed cocktails, and plenty of good cheer. In 2017, the first year that the concept came to Texas, the bar popped up with locations in Austin and Fort Worth. This year, it expands to San Antonio, Houston, and Galveston.

The idea originally launched in 2014 when Greg Boehm, owner of online bar supplies emporium Cocktail Kingdom, received some good advice from his mother. Instead of charging ahead with construction of new bar Mace in New York City, she suggested he temporarily festoon the unfinished space with kitschy holiday decor for the first Miracle pop-up.

That activation was such a success that soon Boehm’s industry friends began asking him to bring the magic to their cities. Miracle has since grown to over 90 locations, with stops across the United States, Panama, Mexico, England, and Canada.

Each location serves a menu created by Miracle’s longtime manager Joann Spiegel and renowned bartender Nico de Soto of Mace and Paris’ Danico. The names are tongue-in-cheek and the ingredients play with nostalgic flavors, but the drinks are far from basic eggnog.

The Snowball Old Fashioned transforms the classic with gingerbread Bourbon and wormwood bitters. And a Partridge in a Pear Tree features a complex agave-based potion with reposado tequila, pear brandy, mezcal, spiced demerara syrup, cinnamon, and more.

All of the drinks are served in custom mugs, coupes, and highballs from Cocktail Kingdom. A limited amount of the themed glassware will be available for purchase with 10 percent of sales benefitting nonprofit Action Against Hunger.

If the Miracle pop-up at The Eleanor isn’t enough to keep spirits bright, the concept will also be taking over Pastiche in San Antonio, Hide in Dallas, Proper in Fort Worth, Julep in Houston, and Daiquiri Time Out in Galveston.

And for the first time, tiki Christmas pop-up Sippin’ Santa is also making its way to Austin, taking over east side dive Nickel City. Like Miracle, the Sippin' Santa pop-up begins November 23 and runs through December 30. 

That pop-up gives the holidays a tropical twist care of tiki expert Jeff “Beachbum” Berry and Brad Smith of New Orleans’ Latitude 29. Drinks include Hawaiian Milk Punch (Bourbon, cream, chai syrup, sarsaparilla, tobacco bitters); Kris Kringle Colada (dark Jamaican run, Cynar, allspice liqueur, lime, pineapple, cream of coconut); and Grinch Grog (blanco tequila, herbal liqueur, pine, pear, lemon, house “Grinch” syrup).

Like The Eleanor, Nickel City will donate 10 percent of sales to Action Against Hunger.