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Slow-Moving Speakeasy Morris Is Popping Up in Ivy City

The aspiring cocktail bar will test-drive drinks at Republic Restoratives

The Ivy Room [Photo: Jon Robinson/Official]
The Ivy Room will host a Morris pop-up next week.
Photo: Republic Restoratives

Cocktail lovers will get a sneak peek next week of what they’ll be sipping at a speakeasy that’s been in development at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center for two years.

Morris, the planned sibling to Dupont Circle’s the Sheppard, will be bigger, with two levels and more cocktail choices, but the same vintage soundtrack and decor. Partners include Top Chef alum Spike Mendelsohn, David Strauss, and Vinoda Basnayake.

While its forever home continues to take shape, Strauss plans to preview some of the drinks he’s worked up at a pop-up he’s planting inside one of his other operations: the Ivy Room at local distillery Republic Restoratives (1369 New York Avenue NE). The temporary Morris is scheduled to run from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m, Monday, November 13, through Thursday, November 16 — just in time for DC Cocktail Week.

Potential offerings include: East New York Flip (bourbon, tawny port, honey, egg yolk, cream, nutmeg); American Trilogy (rye, apple brandy, brown sugar, orange bitters); Ivy City Swizzle (vodka, lime, mint, peychaud’s); and Feminist Gent (vodka, luna amara, lime, orange, ginger, soda), among others. Cocktails are priced at $12 each; cheese and charcuterie pairings from local provider Cheese Monster will be available for sale. Reservations are required for the pop-up.

Strauss, who's worked on bar programs at Petworth Citizen and Le Diplomate, tells Eater that D.C. is “greatly lacking” the types of “unassuming cafes” found in Europe. He plans to remedy that by building a daytime coffee component into the brick-and-mortar Mount Vernon Square bar.

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