Published by Jeremy. Last Updated on November 30, 2023.
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The holiday season is a wonderful time of year, and Christmas in Pittsburgh is truly a sight to behold.
But as the holiday season is as much about spreading goodwill, taking in the decorations, and the like, Pittsburgh also has another avenue for enjoying the holiday- via its libations scenes!
In fact, there are several Christmas bars in Pittsburgh to enjoy during the holiday season, ensuring that you'll have some holiday cheer from Light Up Night (or in the case of a few of the pop-ups, Black Friday) to New Years. Check them out below!
Please Note: We are featuring all of the holiday popups we are aware of in this guide, whether we have personally visited or not. As such, experiences may vary. When available, click the link to read our full review of the bars we have visited!
Miracle on 6th
Miracle on 6th is the epitome of holiday bars. This international pop-up can be found in many states as well a few other countries around the world. The Pittsburgh iteration does its best to have almost every single inch of bar space covered in decorations (in fact, probably the most out of any bar in Pittsburgh), and for that we can't get enough of it- although their delicious cocktails don't hurt, either.
The Miracle bar has a rather popular following behind it, so when you visit be prepared as there may likely be a line!
Miracle Bar on 6th is located at 137 6th Street in downtown Pittsburgh in 2023 and opens November 18th. We had visited this popup in previous iterations.
What could make a holiday popup better? Adding Miracle Bar? Naturally. But what about tiki? Well, now you have our attention.
The folks behind the international popup, Miracle Bar, are bringing a second pop-up concept to Pittsburgh in 2023, the aptly named Sippin' Santa. This new concept will be bringing tiki inspired beverage, holiday twists, and festive cocktail mugs to Wood Street starting on November 24th to New Years Eve from 4pm to midnight. You'll be feeling like you are on a tropical island in no time with this one!
Sippin' Santa is located at 490 Wood Street next to Capital Grill.
Note: Tinseltown was previously called The Tipsy Elf and took place at Hough's in Greenfield. In 2023, the concept changed names and moved locations to Mixtape in Garfield. Photos are from the previous popup.
Tinseltown is located inside Mixtape in Garfield and is a different kind of pop-up bar experience as you have to purchase a ticket with timed entry to enjoy this one. In past years, each ticket generally included a welcome drink (which for us was a very poor mulled wine) and 90 minutes inside the space where you can then purchase additional cocktails (which were much more enjoyable despite being somewhat small) or shots at varying prices- adding to the overall price.
One thing we like about ticketed pop-ups like this is that the crowds are better managed than at other bars which may have long, long waits to get into. This allowed us to enjoy the two themed area decorated decently enough (with one area themed to be like an outdoor snow area and another as an indoor Christmas theme) while being spaced out from other guests.
The Tipsy Elf is located in Mixtape at 4907 Penn Avenue. Tinseltown popup typically begins at the end of November. Tickets can be purchased here.
Some bars get into the spirit to the point that we wouldn't even call them a popup at all. For those who like decorations all over the place, it is hard to beat Bob's Garage in Blawnox.
Bob's Garage is known as being a bit of a dive bar that is covered with decorations from floor-to-ceiling just about everywhere you look. The only difference is that this one has been doing it for years, well before the pop-up holiday concept even was a thing. This one may not have a specially curated menu and only serves a limited selection of draft and canned beer, but the decorations more than make up for the limited offering!
Bob's Garage is located at 1372 Freeport Road in Blawnox, PA- just east of Pittsburgh off of 28.
Apres Ski Lounge at Butcher and the Rye
Although we have personally been quite sad that Butcher and the Rye has not returned post-pandemic, the space has been used for rotating seasonal pop-up bars in the interim.
This Christmas, Butcher and the Rye returns to its Apres Ski Bar roots on December 1st throughout winter with its cozy ski lodge vibe. We expect this one to run past the holiday season, so if you can't make it down for Christmas, you may have a chance to visit in January and beyond as last season's pop up ran from December through April!
Apres Ski Lodge is located at Butcher and the Rye at 212 6th Street in downtown Pittsburgh.
It was inevitable that a distillery would get into the holiday popups, and Wigle Whiskey is launching its Wigle Wonderland experience for the first time in 2023 starting on November 18th.
The popup boasts an experience set in a “cabin retreat” in the mountains with cocktails like Frosty the Eggnog, Blue Christmas 75, Candy Cane Lane Espresso Martinis, and more. A DJ is also going to be present on Saturday nights as well to add some beats to the experience.
Wigle's holiday popup is located inside the distillery at 2401 Smallman Street in the Strip District.
Home Alone at Barcadia
Market Square's resident Barcade, aptly named Barcadia, is throwing its hand at a popup bar themed to the movie Home Alone. This one will begin on November 17th and run through New Years.
So if pinball machines, holiday decorations, and a movie theme is for you, Market Square is the place to be. Please note that the popup is family friendly until 6pm when the space will be 21+.
Barcadia is located at 24 Market Square.
Rudolph's Rooftop at Il Tetto
The rooftop bar and beer garden, il Tetto at Siena Mercato, is getting in on the popup fun with their Rudolph's Rooftop bar. The bar will feature drinks like Clarice's Nectar (rum, hazlenut, and butterscotch), Misfit Toys Libation (rum, almond, elderflower, lime), and more.
At the time of publication, details about this popup were sparse, but it looks like the experience will run throughout the month of December.
Rudoph's Rooftop is located inside Il Tetto at Siena Mercato at 942 Penn Avenue in the Cultural District.
Christmas Popup at North Star Restaurant
Fancy a holiday popup west of the city? North Star Restaurant in Imperial, PA, will be transformed into a holiday popup experience again this year.
Enjoy holiday decorations and festive drinks like Santa's Sangria, Merry Mule, Jingle Juice, and more at this one running from mid-November through December!
North Star Restaurant is located at 8155 Steubenville Pike in Imperial, PA.
Ski Lodge at Grandview Saloon
Finally, Grandview Saloon is getting into the pop-up experience with a Grandview Ski Lodge experience boasting holiday cocktails, a hot cocoa bar, a fireplace, finger foods, and more.
Details on this one are a bit sparse, but we expect more to come out in the coming days and weeks.
Grandview Saloon is located at 1212 Grandview Avenue in Mount Washington.
So, where will you be drinking this holiday season? Comment below to let us know!
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