Welcome to Game of Thrones Pop Up Bar, where you can take a trip all around Westeros and Essos all while staying right here in D.C.! This event is brought to you by the amazing people of The Drink Company in Shaw/U Street, the same people who brought to you the Mario Brothers and Cherry Blossom-themed pop-up bars. Now they’re diving into the Game of Thrones world. Five different sections each have their own unique bars, all themed after various Westeros locations: Winterfell, Bravos, the Faceless Man Temple, and Dragonstone. There are dragons, flags, costumes, music, and so much more! Wait, it’s a bar, so are there lots of drinks? Oh yes!! Their drink menu was amazing and got us tipsy.
Careful with the drinks, though –most of them have up to three different liqueurs combined with sweet mixers. Even though it’s a novelty and limited-time bar, the drinks weren’t too expensive, with most costing between $13 and $15. We tried as much as possible, so you don’t have to. You know we are nice like that. We took quite a few for the team (LOL), and that had nothing to do with the fact that each drink was inspired by and references specific things from the show!
Travel Around Westeros and Essos
Sit on The Iron Throne
You can’t go to a Game of Thrones bar and not sit on the Iron Throne! As you walk into the bar, your name and phone number are put on the waiting list so that once it’s your turn, you can move quickly. Careful about the wait time can be anywhere from 40 minutes for us to two hours for others. It really all depends on when you make it to the bar. This is another reason to try and get there early or make your visit during the week.
The North Remembers Cocktail (5/5 NOMs)
The drink for a true King of the North! This was by far our most favorite drink. First, you get a giant wooden mug. Be prepared, however, to surrender your ID because so many people tried to steal them. Good job people, that is why we can’t have nice things! The drink? Oh wow, it was good. The sweetness of coconut and pineapple alone will make you remember it for a while. Careful, the drink is very strong, with a mix of three alcohols: scotch, Oloroso (wine), and Cointreau (orange-flavored liqueur). So don’t drink it too fast… or do and have lots of fun! After all, there are lots of other drunk Game of Thrones fans out there. Make sure to watch our video from the bar on how this drink is made. This is their most pricey drink at $15, but it’s well worth it simply because of how big it is. It’s no surprise that it got our full NOMs score and was one of our favorites.
Like the Dothraki horde, this one is so hard and strong, and it might just turn you into a Khal of your group. Call us if you become Khal Drogo because he is hot, and we can be your Khaleesi ;). It’s sure fun to watch how this drink is made, so make sure to check out our video. Let’s just say it involves lots of mixing and FIRE! One sip in, and you’re punched in the face with four liqueurs. It’s almost as if you are at a Dothraki wedding, minus the killing. At least so we hope. It has Cotton & Reed Dry White Rum, Jamaican Rum, Banane Du Bresil (banana liqueur), Creme De Cacao (chocolate liqueur), cane sugar, and lime. I am pretty sure we had several of these, but after a while, it got harder to keep count. This is one of the pop up’s more standard-priced drinks for $13. It’s not surprising we’ve ordered this drink a few more times, and it scored full NOMs.
Lady Mormont Cocktail (4/5 NOMs)
This drink might not make you as badass as Lady Mormont of Bear Island, but it might just make you happy. The drink comes in a super cute bear-looking mug, and we give extra points to the bar to go to that level of detail. This might be a small drink, but very much like its namesake Lyanna Mormont, it’s very sweet and may just beat you up. Here, it’s all about the alcohol, involving gin, Madeira (wine), and fruity sweet things like honey passion fruit, lemon, falernum (sweet syrup), and orgeat (almond sweet syrup). For that extra cuteness, it comes with a red flower on top. It’s a slightly more expensive drink at $14, and we kind of wish it was a bit bigger.
Lannisters Send Their Regard Cocktail (4/5 NOMs)
Time to drink like it’s a wedding, just hopefully not the Red kind where the Lannisters send their regards. While the name might reference a very dark day in the Game of Thrones (we were quite devastated by the Red Wedding), this drink is definitely enjoyable. We appreciated the combination of several alcohols in one drink: vodka, Fino Sherry (dry wine), Contratto Bitter (Italian liqueur), all mixed with strawberry, lemon, and sparkling water. Is it bad that we enjoyed this drink so much? It’s a good way to forget that some of our favorite characters died. Good thing this drink is only $13, so we don’t feel so guilty.
Milk of The Poppy Cocktail (3/5 NOMs)
We are in great pain, in pain for more alcohol! So let’s try Milk of the Poppy. In Westeros, the Milk of the Poppy is given to people as a painkiller. Compared to other drinks, this wasn’t as memorable. This was more like a regular rum drink and didn’t have that Game of Thrones flavor we came to expect after other drinks. It actually had a lot in it with Armagnac (brandy), dark rum, Don Ciccio & Ciccio Concerto, Coconut, Pineapple, Lime, and Clarified Milk. This is one of their least sugary drinks, which is good for those who are not fans of sweetness, but sadly that is not us. We like our sugar, and we like it a lot of it.
Beware of Long Lines
The bar is open Monday through Thursday from 5 pm to 12:30 am, Friday and Saturday from 5 pm to 1:30 am, and Sunday from 1 p.m. to 7 pm. You can expect super long lines at any time, especially as it draws closer to the last day of the Pop Up Bar. We went during the weekend at 3 pm so we could be some of the first people to get into the bar. Yep, that involved a two-hour wait if you do it, but then we were some of the first dozen people to make it inside. We heard about some people who made it much later and had to wait in line for hours without moving. Plus, early arrival likely means a shorter time to wait for the Iron Throne. While waiting in line, we made a few new friends who are also big fans of the show. We felt the wait was really worth it and would recommend you make a visit before the Pop Up closes.