Dessert

Updated: The Best Holiday Pop Ups at Dallas Restaurants and Bars

Royal 38 has transformed into a million little sparkly lights.
Royal 38 has transformed into a million little sparkly lights. Royal 38
Whether you're ready or not, the holiday spirit has arrived and you’ll find seasonal spirits and food to keep things festive at several pop-ups around Dallas. Most of them are already in full swing, and as fast as the holiday season flies by, you'll want to check them out post-haste.

Miracle at Royal 38

2301 N. Akard St., Suite 210 (Victory Park)
Nov. 12 - Dec. 31


The stockings are hung at Royal 38 for another year of Miracle, with holiday cocktails amid some over-the-top Christmas decor. Miracle is the pop-up once held by sister business HIDE Bar, and there’s new as well as familiar frivolity here. Drink a Christmapolitan with vodka, elderflower, vermouth, cranberry, lime, rosemary and absinthe or the Yippie Ki Yay (you know the rest) with Barbados rum, rhum agricole, Trinidad Overproof rum, ube and coconut orgeat and pineapple.

If you want a hot drink and aren’t afraid to end up on the naughty list, try the Bad Santa with rum, spiced butter, oat milk and nutmeg. Actually, that sounds kind of nice.

The Miracle pop-up will also happen at The Aussie Grind in Frisco and at Nickel City Fort Worth. Visit the pop-up’s website for hours and details on those activations. Hours are 4 p.m. to midnight, Monday through Thursday, 4 p.m. to 2 a.m. Friday, 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to midnight Sunday.

Sippin’ Santa at RoPo & Logan

2816 Elm St. (Deep Ellum)
Nov. 12 - Dec. 31


This one’s a tropical Christmas pop-up in a midwestern dive bar in Deep Ellum. If that feels like thematic whiplash, don’t worry. You’ll feel better after a few cocktails.

Try the Kris Kringle Colada, the Christmas Eve of Destruction with rum, nutmeg syrup, herbal liqueur, lime and aromatic bitters or a White Russian Christmas with cold brew, vodka, condensed milk, ancho chile liqueur and cinnamon syrup.

The pop-up is open 4 p.m. to midnight, Wednesday through Saturday. After Thanksgiving, Monday and Tuesday hours will be opened up. Visit their website or Instagram for more information.
click to enlarge Vodka hot toddies and Kentucky Hot Cocoa (with Maker’s Mark) will warm you inside while you snuggle with your sweetie in an igloo or cabin. - THE ADOLPHUS HOTEL
Vodka hot toddies and Kentucky Hot Cocoa (with Maker’s Mark) will warm you inside while you snuggle with your sweetie in an igloo or cabin.
The Adolphus Hotel

Miracle on Commerce at The Adolphus

1321 Commerce St. (Downtown Dallas)
Nov. 17- Jan. 29


Only in Texas could you toast s'mores by a fire pit beside a rooftop swimming pool surrounded by igloos. And only at The Adolphus can you enjoy this winter wonderland that will have you believing in the magic of Christmas as you snag a spot at the bar or reserve a cabana (remade as a log cabin) or igloo.


At a media event, we sampled the Nutcracker Chili (a traditional take on Frito pie) and Chris Kringle's Loaded Chips with Texas brisket, blue cheese cream, pickled jalapeño, tomato and green onion on house-made kettle chips. Other offerings include Señor Santo’s Tamale Bites and Merry Mac and Cheese Balls — fried macaroni and cheese balls, marinara, Parmesan and basil.

Of course, there are s'mores for two to four people and churros with chocolate sauce and peppermint. There a full wine, beer and cocktail list. The Honey Bear Eggnog is made with Maker’s Mark, dark rum, farm egg, cream and nutmeg served in a smiling honey bear container. Santa’s Snapshot is made with gingerbread syrup and Rumple Minze.

The rooftop is open Wednesday through Saturday from 4 p.m. to midnight. There will be live acoustic music on Wine Down Wednesdays, Ugly Sweater contests on Thursdays in December and live DJs on Fridays and on Not-So-Silent Nights on Saturdays. Visit The Adolphus website to see the full bites and cocktails menu and to make reservations.
click to enlarge It's gonna be a paw-ty at Toller. - TOLLER PATIO
It's gonna be a paw-ty at Toller.
Toller Patio

Holiday (and Howliday) Festivities at Toller Patio Bar + Kitchen

3675 Ross Ave. (Old East Dallas)
Through Dec. 31


Rudolph may have led the way for Santa but don't sleep on Polar, Toller's 15-foot tall Reindeer. He's the life of their howliday party. The cocktail lineup includes red and green favorites like a margarita on the rocks, a frozen Christmas swirl, a frozen Grinch and a frozen Rudolph.

Smores kits and hot cocoa and ciders are on the menu until it’s no longer cold outside, while decorations are up through the end of the year. The figurative halls at Toller Patio will be decked with more inflatables and Christmas trees and lights.

Every Sunday from noon to 2 p.m. through the end of the year, there will be a Santa and Elves Paw-ty, and kids and pups can get their pictures made with Santa. For $10, your Christmas pics can be printed or sent by email or text.

Toller Patio’s hours are 11 a.m. to midnight Sunday through Thursday and 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. Saturday and Sunday. Check out their Instagram for pics and more details about the holiday fun.
click to enlarge The Henry will have a whimsical winter holiday scene on their rooftop. - KATHY TRAN
The Henry will have a whimsical winter holiday scene on their rooftop.
Kathy Tran

St. Henry at The Henry

2301 N. Akard St. (Victory Park)
Nov. 23 - Jan. 2


‘Tis the season at The Henry, and starting Wednesday, Nov. 24, you’ll find their whimsical winter holiday festivities up on the rooftop. Start with Champagne or cocktails like a spiced pear cosmopolitan, a fig and ginger mule or Saint Henry’s Schnapps flight. Menu items include whole baked brie, spicy tuna and crispy rice, seared diver scallops, prime rib, honey ham and more. Desserts include warm croissant bread pudding, peanut butter molten cake and a big banana split.

The Henry will charge $5 per guest to experience St. Henry, with a portion of the proceeds directed to The Salvation Army.

Hours are 4 to 10 p.m. Monday and Tuesday, 4 to 11 p.m. Wednesday, 4 p.m to midnight Thursday, 4 p.m. to 1 a.m. Friday, noon to 1 a.m. Saturday and noon to 10 p.m. Sunday. Reservations are encouraged for parties of six or more, and private dining rooms are available for larger parties. View the full menu and more, plus make reservations on The Henry's website.
click to enlarge The Tipsy Elf will pop up at this spot adjacent to Paradiso. - LAUREN DREWES DANIELS
The Tipsy Elf will pop up at this spot adjacent to Paradiso.
Lauren Drewes Daniels

The Tipsy Elf

308 N. Bishop Ave. (Bishop Arts)
Opening Nov. 26


This holiday pop-up returning to the Bishop Arts District is all about trying to get on the naughty list. Larry the Elf is your host and Glory Devine as Mrs. Claus is your ho-ho-hostess. The menu of light bites and cocktails hasn’t been released yet, but we’re excited for what’s to come from this project by Exxir Hospitality (Botanist, Paradiso, Tejas and Mermaid Bar) and lluggy Recinos.

Take a sleigh ride (or failing that a ride share) over to the little house that once housed Good Companions for some holiday debauchery (or just some fun food and drinks.)

Hours will be announced soon. The Tipsy Elf is the white house in Paradiso's courtyard. It's at the corner of Bishop and Melba. Visit the website for more information.

Chill Minster at Ill Minster Pub

2600 Cedar Springs Rd #1 (Oak Lawn)
Dec. 1-31


The pop-up pros might have a hard time topping their Game of Thrones, Nightmare Before Christmas and Star Wars takeovers from the past, but “Chill Minster” will certainly give it a go. A wide selection of holiday cocktails will be on offer, and a themed shot wheel livens things up.

Pose with Santa on his “Throne of Lies” on weekends or snap a photo with the tree “Spruce Willis." Monday nights will be Christmas movie nights, and other planned activities during the month-long pop-up include cookie decorating, themed paint nights, pajama parties and more.

Hours are 5 p.m. to midnight Monday through Thursday, 5 p.m. to 2 a.m. Friday, noon to 2 a.m. Saturday and noon to midnight Sunday. Get the details on Ill Minster’s Instagram.

Let It Snow at Yellow Rosa Cockteleria

2901 Commerce St. (Deep Ellum)
Through Dec. 31


If it just doesn’t feel like Christmas without snow, you probably aren’t from Texas, but you still don’t have to do without your favorite holiday weather. At the decorated holiday pop-up at Yellow Rosa in Deep Ellum, it snows every day. Grab some themed cocktails and enjoy holiday decor and lights from now through the end of the year.

Yellow Rosa is open from 4:30 to 11 p.m. Thursday, 4:30 p.m. to 2 a.m. Friday, 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday.

Santa’s Hall at Trinity Groves

3011 Gulden Lane, Suite 109
Thursday through Sunday, through Dec. 31


At Santa’s Hall, in the former The Hall space at Trinity Groves, you’ll find Santa’s chair, Christmas trees, ornaments and more in a fully gift-wrapped space. Cocktails include the Grinch made with raspberry vodka and Midori, and a Candy Stripetini made with vanilla vodka. Other drinks include the Heat Miser, the You’re Naughty and the Frosty AF made with gin, creme de violette, blue curaçao and Champagne.

Cookies from Cake Bar are also on the menu, and you can try to get on the nice list by making donations to local charities including Genesis Women’s Shelter and Scottish Rite for Children.

Santa’s Hall is open 4 to 10 p.m. Thursday, 4 p.m. to midnight Friday, 2 p.m. to midnight Saturday and 2 p.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday.

If you happen to go to Santa’s Hall on a Friday night during December, you can also catch a Christmas Movie at ArtPark. Holiday movie showings start at 6:30 p.m.

Winterproof Wonderland at the Statler

1914 Commerce St. (Downtown)

Waterproof is a rooftop lounge atop the iconic Statler in downtown. For the rest of December however, it will transform into Winterproof Wonderland with a ski lodge theme. Visitor can rent their own personal chalets (known as cabanas in the summertime), which fit up to four people for $200 for two hours. There are also  and "private snow clouds" that can also be rented; the large one is $500 for two hours and the two smaller ones are $300 for two hours Sign up through Resy. Dinner and drinks are available through Sfereco, an Italian-American restaurant on the main floor of The Statler.

Bad Santa at Trick Pony

2823 Main St. (Deep Ellum)
Through Dec. 24
Harlowe MXM's side hustle sister-bar, Trick Pony, recently metamorphosed into a Bad Santa theme. They'll have a full cocktail list of surly indifference, like the Drunk Uncle.
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By day, Kristina Rowe writes documentation that helps users navigate software, and as a contributor to the Dallas Observer she helps people find their way to food and fun. A long-time list-maker, small-business fan and happiness aficionado, she's also been an Observer reader for almost 40 years.
Contact: Kristina Rowe