Food

DC’s Biggest Holiday Bar Is Back With a Nationals “Candy Cane Baseball Wonderland” Theme

Another home run: Miracle on 7th returns Friday.

Miracle on 7th is back for its 5th year (pictured: a new Son of a Nutcracker cocktail). Photography courtesy of Drink Company

Miracle on 7th, the most festive holiday bar in DC, is back in Shaw for its fifth year on Friday, November 22—and this time, Drink Company isn’t just celebrating Christmas and Hanukkah. In addition to ornaments and igloos, candy canes and dreidels, one room of the three-part bar has been converted into a “candy cane baseball wonderland” in honor of the Nationals’ big win.

“I like to think of it as the miracle of winning the World Series,” says special projects manager Adriana Salame-Aspiazu, who’s behind the elaborate, Instagram-ready decor.

The idea begun as a joke for Drink Co. founder Derek Brown, a longtime Nats fan—né an Orioles fan, like so many locals. He told a friend who works with the team that if the team won the World Series, he’d open a “Nationals holiday” pop-up bar.

“Back then they were like ha-ha-ha,” says Brown. “And then I got a call that legal approved it and they just needed to run it by ownership.”

Christmas Bar DC 2019
Sip a Maccabeats by Dreidel cocktail in the “Chinese and a movie” room.

The theme, per Salame-Aspiazu, is “Christmas-with-a-baseball-twist.” The halls are decked with giant bats and balls, baby sharks and red-and-white, candy cane-baseball swirls. Fans can take photos with World Series pennants or a huge “Finished the Fight” sign. Part of the bar’s contract involves not mentioning any players by name, “So no merry Strasmas,” she says. But the pop-up will host a “Christmas Eve Eve” Party on December 23 where ticket sales benefit the Washington Nationals Dream Foundation. 

Fans of last year’s Jew-ish “Chinese and a movie” theme will find a similar room decked out with takeout menus from local favorites like Panda Gourmet and New Big Wong; movie posters with famous Jewish actors; a giant popcorn machine; and a lo mein “instillation” that bar-goers can hop inside for photos. For more of a classic holiday vibe, head to the room outfitted with ornaments, elves, Santas, and a glowing igloo.

Save for the fresh movie popcorn, the menu is the same throughout. Cocktail creator Paul Taylor is bringing back a bunch of favorites from past years—those eggnog shots aren’t going anywhere.

Christmas Bar DC 2019
A crowd favorite returns: Gretchen, Stop Trying to Make Fetch Happen, a play on a sherry cream soda.

“Some of them still have the Drink Company, cerebral thing going on, like ‘Oh there’s fortified wine in this.’ But most of it just puts a smile on your face,” says Taylor.

That’s true for new drink like a creamy Son of a Nutcracker with Cognac, brandy, and chocolate and mint liqueurs, or a rich red wine-infused hot cocoa. The bar will also pour a handful of holiday beers and festive, fruit-forward wines (i.e. Gamay all day). Like all Drink Company bars, there’ll also be non-alcoholic alternatives—here an egg cream and salty orange cream soda. 

Miracle on 7th will be open nightly through December 31, and at 1 PM on weekends after November 30. Brown says he gets “roughly 140 emails” asking about the Christmas bar’s most famous feature: epic lines.

“I’m not going to make any promises, but Tuesdays are great,” says Brown.

Miracle on 7th. 1843 7th St., NW.

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Food Editor

Anna Spiegel covers the dining and drinking scene in her native DC. Prior to joining Washingtonian in 2010, she attended the French Culinary Institute and Columbia University’s MFA program in New York, and held various cooking and writing positions in NYC and in St. John, US Virgin Islands.