Welcome to Church & State. We are Americans: inventors of juleps, sours, rickeys, fizzes, and martinis. All of our ingredients are born, bred, & blended within the United States, exclusively. Innovation is our heritage and our calling.
So says owner and Capitol Hill mixologist extraordinaire Erik Holzherr of his third and newest bar above Fruit Bat on H Street. You may have heard that the space is going to be open on New Year’s Eve, as part of Fruit Bat’s festivities. I had a chance to check it out and chat with Erik a bit about what we can expect when the space is finally open in January.
The focus will be on American small-batch spirits by purveyors like Leopold Brothers, whose products will be featured prominently in Church & State’s cocktails. All the products – beers, wines, spirits, liqueurs – will be American. Anyone who’s been to Wisdom and/or Fruit Bat knows that Erik and his team know what they’re doing behind the bar, so it’s fair to expect expert takes on American classics. Holzherr told Smorgie.com that he’ll also be carrying Blue Coat Gin and Vieux Carre Absinthe, among others, which regulars at his Pennsylvania Avenue SE bar Wisdom will recognize.
So what’s the new spot look like? Find out after the jump…
Well, that’s easy: Church. No, seriously. There’s a freakin’ confessional, which is mildly reminiscent of the curtained siderooms in Wisdom. Not to mention ample pew
space for patrons to SIT UP STRAIGHT AND STOP FIDGETING IN FRONT OF JESUS, GOD AND MARY (sorry, I’m having flashbacks of my Sundays spent in the pews of St. Margaret Mary’s back home… where was I? Oh, right… pews). The bar foot rail is a kneeler (thankfully the bar itself – made by Erik’s uncle – is normal height) and the Holy Spirit floats in stained glass… above
the spirits. There’s a sense of humor in the decor, and much like Erik’s other bars, it doesn’t take itself too seriously despite pouring some of the best drinks in the city.
So, if you’re still looking for something to do on New Year’s, consider Fruit Bat and sneaking a peek at Church & State. Or you can hit up Wisdom, which will be showing episodes of Mad Men and featuring specials on Old Fashioneds and other Mad Men -esque cocktails. None of the bars is charging a cover. For more ideas on what to do for New Year’s, stay tuned for my New Year’s Eve on the Hill round up post coming very soon!