Halloween Pop-Up Bar Black Lagoon Announces Official October Tour Dates
Spirits-industry vets Erin Hayes and Kelsey Ramage will bring macabre stylings to watering holes across North America
Black Lagoon, the award-winning Halloween pop-up bar, is bringing its terrifying, immersive experience and spooky cocktails to nine cities throughout October. After a series of successful one-night previews throughout summer, the creepy-as-hell event is ready to set up shop at a selected bar in each location.
The brainchild of two industry veterans, Erin Hayes (Fairmont Century Plaza in Los Angeles and Chicago’s Lost Lake) and Kelsey Ramage (Trash Collective and Toronto’s soon-to-open Supernova), Black Lagoon pays homage to the macabre and throws in a splash of goth and metal for good measure.
The duo ideated the terrifying concept after running a pop-up at Tales of the Cocktail in New Orleans’ infamous Dungeon Bar. The first installment of Black Lagoon took over a popular bar in Toronto in October 2021, and proved a smash to cocktail and Halloween enthusiasts alike. Black Lagoon was recently named Canada’s Best Pop-Up Bar by Canada’s 100 Best, and this year, is set to make an even bigger splash.
The location and dates for each pop-up are:
Butcher & Bullock, Vancouver, October 11th-31st
Dandy Crown in partnership with Hospitality 201, Chicago, October 3rd-31st
Hey Love, Portland, October 17th-31st
Lost Property Bar, Los Angeles, October 1-31st
Nickel City, Dallas/FortWorth, October 11th-31st
Our Wicked Lady, New York City, October 1-31st
Third Space, Toronto, October 1-31st
Yacht Club, Denver, October 17th-31st
132 Bar Vintage, Montreal, October 1-31st
“We chose our roster of cities and venues carefully,” says Hayes. “Each city has a robust cocktail culture, so guests expect quality drinks. We also wanted markets and bars that embrace countercultures, so patrons who are likely to enjoy our immersive vibe will come and feel right at home.”
Guests will be able to immerse themselves in truly wicked environments that go beyond the kitchy pumpkins dotting lawns at this time of year. Its founders dub the space a goth-metal Halloween pop-up, taking their inspiration from goth culture and cult horror – think more House of 1,000 Corpses and less The Nightmare Before Christmas.
Visitors will encounter a dark, dungeon-like environment bedecked with skulls, life-size coffins and other elements that pay homage to the occult and bizarre. Hayes and Ramage also hope Black Lagoon stands apart with its list of spooky-yet-quality cocktails. “Kelsey and I both love the metal/goth/horror bars and those spots really inspired Black Lagoon, but they are more beer-and-a-shot type places,” says Hayes. “With our background in the spirits world, we wanted to pay extra attention to making sure our list is as tasty as it is blood curdling.”
The drinks menu is built around Halloween hues – you’ll find beverages that are blood red, the darkest black and an eerie orange to celebrate the season. A few of the drinks will be served in custom glassware – purchasable if visitors want to take home a demented souvenir. Drinks include names such as Screaming Banshee (Botanist Gin, Giffard L’Abricot, pineapple syrup, greek yogurt), Lilith’s Cup (Mount Gay Black Barrel, Aperol, vermouth, passionfruit syrup, glitter), Closed Casket (Bruichladdich Classic, St. Remy, Giffard L’Abricot, passionfruit syrup, miso falernum) and Hellraiser (Hornitos, Chairman’s Spiced Rum, Cointreau, spiced oat orgeat).
Just don’t expect any monster mashing. Black Lagoon’s playlists are expertly curated, with something for everyone in mind. Ranging from hardcore punk and heavy metal, to up-beat pop and classic rock, each features on-theme tunes, that guests are bound to recognize. Check out Black Lagoon’s “Early” playlist here.
Overall, Black Lagoon is about celebrating everyone’s favorite spooky month of the year, but the pop-up is also about creating a safe space for those who may not feel at ease in every cocktail bar. “We want this to be a space for the weird, for the misfits and the goths,” says Hayes. Ramage adds, “As an adult, this concept embraces my inner goth metal kid who just loved Halloween. We just want to let people have fun and experience true freedom from judgment.”
Media release and images provided by Mikayla Vielot, Rachel Harrison Communications.