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The Miracle on Little Raven cocktail pop up at Wayward includes a “Snowball Old Fashioned,” made with gingerbread bourbon, wormwood bitters, and lemon zest. Photo by Melissa Hom, courtesy of Miracle

Christmas Pop-Up Cocktail Bar Brings Holiday Cheer to Denver

Miracle on Little Raven begins at Wayward on November 22.

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If Halloween’s end and Thanksgiving’s approach have you reaching for the Christmas decorations, you’re not alone. All things merry and bright are popping up (see what we did there?) around Denver these days, and one of the most festive (and booze-fueled) is just around the corner: Miracle on Little Raven, a holiday-themed pop-up cocktail bar debuting at Wayward on November 22.

For a solid month, Wayward will be transformed into a Christmas party palace, bedecked with ribbons and garlands and lights a’ plenty, as holiday music plays and festive cocktails flow. Chad Michael George, Wayward co-owner and bartender extraordinaire, is very excited to transform the space and welcome Denverites for this holiday spectacular. “The cocktail list is really intense, so we’re building a six-draught system to help expedite the drinks,” George says, “and we’ve got an exciting lineup of guest bartenders to work throughout the month, too.” The list of superstars includes Señor Bear’s Chelsea Little, Star Bar’s Les Baker V, and Matsuhisa’s Allison Widdecombe Buchanan.

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The Miracle on Little Raven drink menu spans such delights as the Christmopolitan (vodka, elderflower, dry vermouth, spiced cranberry sauce, rosemary, lime, absinthe mist), the Bad Santa (mulled red wine, tawny port, orange liqueur, spices, golden raisins; served hot), and the You’ll Shoot Your Rye Out (pumpkin spiced rye, Budweiser­ marshmallow syrup, egg). All will be served in Cocktail Kingdom custom glassware (mugs, coupes, highballs, and rocks glasses), which are also available for purchase at the bar. With 10 percent of all barware sales going to Action Against Hunger, shopping for yourself (or, ahem, others) is certainly the right thing to do.

The Miracle magic began back in 2014 when owner Greg Boehm, the founder of Cocktail Kingdom, was set to begin construction on his East Village cocktail bar, Mace. His mother suggested, on a whim, that he wait to begin renovations and instead, host a holiday-themed pop-up bar for the month of December. “She thought December was an opportunity,” Boehm says, “but she admits that she didn’t actually think I’d agree to it. After I did, she was pretty shocked and got nervous…what if it wasn’t a success? I’d never listen to her again!” Lucky for us all, that first Miracle pop-up was a success, and now, three years later, the concept will be held in 50 cities around the world, Denver included.

If you’re thirsty and/or in the holiday mood, get your festive selves down to Wayward to check it out. Because, clearly, Mother knows best.

Miracle on Little Raven at Wayward will run from November 22 through December 24. Doors open at 6 p.m. each night; no reservations accepted. Please check Wayward’s Facebook page to be sure the pop-up is open to the public on the night you want to go—there are already several buy-outs planned. 

1610 Little Raven St., 720-449-8300

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Denise Mickelsen, Food Editor

Denise Mickelsen oversees all of 5280’s food-related coverage, and feels damn lucky to do so. Follow her on Instagram @DeniseMickelsen.

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