Hanukkah pop-up bar offers dreidel spinning competitions, giant shot menorah

Media Credit: Derek Long | Staff Photographer

Ivy and Coney, a Chicago and Detroit-themed sports bar, was transformed into a pop-up Hanukkah bar called Chai-vy and Cohen-y Friday.

Updated: Dec. 4, 2017 at 4:51 p.m.

Extend eight crazy nights into an entire month of celebration at D.C.’s newest Hanukkah pop-up bar.

Ivy and Coney, a Chicago and Detroit-themed sports bar, was transformed into a pop-up Hanukkah bar called Chai-vy and Cohen-y Friday. The pop-up is located at 1537 Seventh St. NW and will be open through the end of December. The space is adorned with decorative blue and white lights, lanterns, Stars of David and dreidels.

Adam Fry, the co-owner of Ivy and Coney, said the bar has hosted small Hanukkah celebrations for the past two years, since the popular D.C. Christmas pop-up bar Miracle on Seventh Street has taken over Eat the Rich at 1839 Seventh St. NW. But this season they wanted to really commit, he said.

“This year we just kind of decided that it would be fun to do a tongue-in-cheek, big, all-out celebration,” Fry said. “Seeing people’s enthusiasm for something that’s a little bit different from what they’re used to, in terms of holiday celebrations, has been the best part.”

To coincide with the bar’s theme, two authentic Jewish dishes were added to their menu. Crispy potato latkes and matzoh ball soup will now be served by the bar to help customers get into the holiday spirit.

The drink menu features Manischewitz kosher wine, Slivovitz plum brandy and schnapps. The bar is also stocking a selection of He’Brew beers made by Shmaltz Brewing Company in Clifton Park, N.Y. – all for $7 or less.

Outside the bar, guests can enjoy boozy hot cider and groups of eight people can drink from the “ShotNorah,” a 2 feet by 16 feet menorah that is lined with shot glasses. Guests can tip the oversized menorah back all at once to take a shot as a group.

Dreidel masters will have a chance to showcase their spinning skills Dec. 19 when a dreidel spinning contest will be held in the bar’s “Spinagogue,” a mini stadium the size of a board game and shaped like the Star of David. Guests can sign up to play on the bar’s website and will compete for prizes during the day-long competition.

Guests will be able to celebrate the Festival of Lights with chocolate gelt coins and a menorah lighting in the bar every night from Dec. 12 through Dec. 20, the eight nights of Hanukkah. You can continue celebrating at Chai-vy and Cohen-y until Dec. 31, when the bar will close out its final night with a New Year’s Eve party.

Fry added that although the bar showcases new decorations that he described as “Hanukkah disco” and seasonal menu items, it still has the same casual bar feel.

“At the end of the day, while it is a big celebration, it’s still the same bar,” Fry said. “It’s still Ivy and Coney delivering the same low-key, laid-back atmosphere that we always do.”

The bar will be open through the end of December, Monday through Thursday from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m., Friday 4 p.m. to 3 a.m., Saturday 12 p.m. to 3 a.m. and Sunday 12 p.m. to 2 a.m.

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