Why make a gingerbread house when you can sit and drink inside one?
Chrismukkah Galley, a pop-up bar in Bakery Square on Penn Avenue, is celebrating Christmas and Hanukkah in a festive, 1,300-square-foot space made to look like the confectionery abode of Mr. and Mrs. Gingerman.
Half of the proceeds the pop-up generates will be donated to Tree of Life Synagogue and East Liberty First Presbyterian Church. Since its debut on Nov. 20, Chrismukkah Galley has already made half of its startup costs back.
Staff members at Galley Group — the food hall development, management and advisory company that runs the Strip District’s Smallman Galley and Federal Galley in the North Side — spent the last month transforming the bright pink building recently vacated by Millie’s Ice Cream into the cookie couple’s dwelling.
Open daily from 5 p.m. to midnight through Dec. 30, the East Liberty pop-up will offer eight creative cocktails whipped up by Smallman Galley Bar Manager Matt Zelinsky.
Rather than serve the typical holiday beverages loaded with cinnamon and nutmeg, Zelinsky thought outside the gift box.
Christmas Morning combines whiskey, cereal milk and sugar cookie syrup, while Peace, Love and Jewish Donuts whips together vanilla-infused Boyd & Blair Vodka, strawberry jam, lemon and egg white.
All cocktails are $11 and come in holiday glassware found at Goodwill stores throughout Pittsburgh. (About 90 percent of the decorations were purchased there, too.) Locally brewed beer and non-alcoholic beverages are also available. As the season rolls on, drinks are subject to change.
Although there is no set menu, food will be available and organizers are working with neighboring restaurant Social to come up with some special munchies customers can pick up and bring in to the pop-up bar.
Sophia Milinkovic, Galley Group’s bar director, says this is the pop-up restaurant company’s first foray into pop-up bars. Although the project’s been a stressful whirlwind, she’s not opposed to opening other temporary watering holes throughout the year.
“It’s nice to see how many people want to come together in the name of charity,” she says.