Nov 14, 2023 - Holidays

Richmond's holiday-themed bars 2023

Evergreen is at 305 W. Broad St. Image: Courtesy of Birdie's

Ready or not, the holiday season has arrived in Richmond.

What's happening: Richmond's Christmas-themed bars start popping up this week — as does access to limited reservations from the folks who offer them.

Why it matters: Reservations fully booked in a day or less last year.

  • Yes, but: Walk-ins are welcome at all the places if you don't nab a reservation a full week before Thanksgiving.

Zoom in: Here are the holiday bars happening in town this year.

The Evergreen: The holiday bar from Birdie's opens Friday and runs every Tuesday through Saturday all day and night through Jan. 6.

  • Last year, Richmonders waited hours for a table at this all-decked Arts District oyster bar from the Common House folks.
  • This year, there will be even more decorations, plus a dozen festive cocktails, including a frozen eggnog and a hot rum and cider called Reindeer Games.
  • Reservations open today at 4pm — and last year, they booked up within 24 hours, Birdie's tells Axios.
Miracle on Cary at The Jasper in Carytown. Image: Courtesy of James Loving

Miracle on Cary: The Jasper in Carytown's uber popular Miracle pop-up begins Wednesday, Nov. 29 and will be going strong through New Year's Eve.

  • Each year the gang puts together themed cocktail and snacks menus, served up in festive mugs and such in their merry and bright bar.
  • For the second year, The Jasper is offering large party reservations — and FYI, they fully booked in minutes last year.
  • Reservations open tomorrow at noon and are available for parties of six to 12 people at 5pm, 7:15pm and 9:30pm (and at 11:45pm on Fridays and Saturdays). A $300 deposit, which goes toward your tab, is required, and reservations have a two-hour time limit.

Sippin' Santa: Emerald Lounge, The Jasper's sister tiki bar in Church Hill, is getting in on the holiday pop-up action this year, too.

  • Its Sippin' Santa pop-up starts Thursday, Nov. 30 and also runs through New Year's Eve. Keep an eye on Insta for possible large party reservations.
  • Holiday cocktail lovers can expect tropical flavors and some frozen Christmas concoctions.
WinterFreuden is at 508 E. Franklin St. downtown. Image: Courtesy of Justin Chesney

WinterFreuden Apres Ski Chalet: The lobby at downtown's indoor minigolf bar, Hotel Greene, transform into a ski lodge starting Wednesday, Nov. 29 and running through the end of the year.

  • Imbibers can expect classic holiday warm drinks (gluhwein, hot toddy, spiked cider), plus a winter rum punch and house eggnog that's been "aging for a couple of months," owner Jim Gottier tells Axios.

Rapp Session: The holiday pop-up cocktail and oyster bar connected to Rappahannock restaurant on East Grace is back this year for the first time since the pandemic.

  • The restaurant confirmed it's coming back this year, opening right after Thanksgiving, but details weren't available by press time. (They're finishing up a renovation on that side, co-owner Travis Croxton tells Axios.) So stay tuned.

The Jefferson: The downtown hotel will be dripping with holiday splendor beginning Monday, Nov. 27 through Jan. 7 — and this year, there are two cocktail lounge options since TJ's is now open again on Fridays and Saturdays.

  • Lemaire is fully booked all month for reservations — for lunch, dinner, brunch and Santa teas — but as of press time, a few large party holiday teas are open, and walk-ins at the bar are welcome. Open daily.

Rum & Reindeer: This drinks-heavy pop-up with a tropical vibe is from (and at) Island Shrimp Company looks to be heading back this December,

Nick's Roman Terrace: This West End Italian spot is decked out year round, but you can find Santa there daily beginning in December. Open daily.

Lewis Ginter: If you're looking for some other holiday-themed food and beverage options, the botanical garden offers a few during GardenFest of Lights, including brunches and dinners with Santa and a pop-up Jingle Bar.

In addition to Island Shrimp Co.'s Rum & Reindeer, The Boathouse restaurant group announced it's planning a Tinsel & Tequila pop-up at its three Casa del Barco locations. The pop-ups launch Friday and will serve festive drinks in aggressively decked out dining rooms.

Fall Line Kitchen & Bar, the downtown Marriott's in-house restaurant, has its igloos back in action, too.

  • These are also all decked out and Bluetooth-speakered up, and available for breakfast, lunch or dinner. Rental fees vary and reservations can be made on OpenTable.

Meanwhile, Helen's in the Fan has finished putting up its stellar holiday decorations and is now taking reservations.

Plus: The Winter Wonderland heated tent at Bingo Beer Co.;

Other festive options: The Tobacco Company, Quirk Hotel, Can Can Brasserie, Bamboo Cafe and New York Deli.


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