09 March 2008

After-dinner drinks at the ice bar at the Chambers Hotel in Minneapolis

After dinner at Solera (previous post), our group walked across Hennepin Avenue to the Chambers Hotel to experience their ice bar.

None of us had ever been there, even the locals. But the concept of an ice bar was pretty alien to our guests. A bar, literally formed from ice, serving iced vodkas, outside, in the middle of winter, temperature hovering in the mid-teens (Fahrenheit) – now that is something they don’t see in Washington, DC, or California (or many other places either, for that matter).

There was a small but friendly crowd huddled around the open fireplace in the courtyard of the Chambers. I think the ice bar probably is pretty conducive to breaking down social barriers so that total strangers feel comfortable joking with you and taking your picture.

In the summer, they have a traditional bar in the same courtyard. The restaurant at the hotel (Chambers Kitchen) is one of my favorites in Minneapolis. I’ve written about it twice on Krik’s Picks.

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