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NYC’s First Hanukkah Pop-up Bar Returns to the West Village

From the Fifth Ave. window displays to Dyker Heights lights, New York City celebrates the season in style, but one pop-up is returning to add some “chutzpah” to the mix with a location decked out for Hanukkah.

The Maccabee Bar is nestled in the West Village and was founded by Naomi Levy, a now Boston-based entrepreneur who loves ringing in the holidays, but, in the past, often felt out of place.

“I also kind of felt like a tourist. It wasn’t for me. I never celebrated Christmas. I celebrated Hanukkah, so I thought to myself, what if I did something that was just completely about Hanukkah?” Levy told NBC New York.

Levy launched the Hanukkah pop-up in 2018 in Boston for one week, which was a success. She brought the Maccabee Bar concept to New York last year, making it the first-ever Hanukkah-themed bar in the city.

The menu features all types of classic Jewish eats, like latkes, bamba and Reuben, and gives a festive flair on nine signature cocktails, like the “Ocho Kandelikas” and “Papa Nosh.”

Patrons can spin the dreidel to decide which alcoholic drink to choose and purchase a bag of “gelt” chocolate coins.

While this holiday season brings joy, the conflict overseas is not to be forgotten as the Isreal-Hamas war continues. Levy notes the need to bring family and friends together to move forward.

“Given the geopolitical landscape, people are feeling really heavy, right? They’re walking around with this extra weight — no matter where you fall on the political spectrum. In a way, it’s kind of self-care to come and let yourself be a little lighter,” Levy said.

The founder and award-winning bartender hopes to expand Maccabee Bar’s footprint in 2024 with a few more locations, including a second pop-up in the greater New York area.

Reservations can be booked until New Year’s Eve under the online site and app Resy.

Source: Nbcnewyork