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PB&J ice bar
Photograph: Courtesy PB&J

An ice bar is coming to the West Loop, just as Chicago gets colder

For the second year in a row, Pizza, Beer & Jukebox will serve drinks from an outdoor bar made of ice.

Zach Long
Written by
Zach Long

A cold front arrived in Chicago this morning, with below zero windchill expect this evening, according to the National Weather Service. The chilly weather will stick around through the weekend, and a West Loop bar is planning to take advantage of the dropping temperature by serving drinks from behind an outdoor bar made entirely of ice.

Pizza, Beer & Jukebox (a.k.a. PB&J) is using 40,000 pounds of ice to construct a bar on Peoria Street, accompanied by a pair of ice thrones (one for adults and one for kids), an ice drink luge and a beer stein made of ice. It's a bigger and better version of the "PB&J Frozen" experience that co-owners (and brothers) Matthew and Josh McCahill created last winter, using 30,000 pounds of ice to construct a bar and an igloo in front of the West Loop restaurant.

"PB&J on Ice" is set to open on Thursday, January 20, and will serve drinks from 5–10pm every night until the ice bar melts away. Because it's an "open air experience," guests won't be asked to provide proof of vaccination to order a drink, though you'll need to present a vax card and an ID if you want to sit down inside of PB&J and order food. According to a release, the opening night of "PB&J on Ice" will feature a live DJ and $13 drink specials, including the bar's Hottie Toddy and Skrewball Hot Cocoa.

How long will the frozen bar last? Well, the latest Accuweather forecast for Chicago lists temperatures below (or just a few degrees above) 32 degrees through the end of January, which means that PB&J's ice installations could survive for a couple of weeks, at the very least. If you're hoping to order an extra cold drink from the chilled bar, you may want to call ahead to confirm that it's not a puddle before you bundle up.

Here's a look at the PB&J ice bar in progress.

PB&J ice bar under construction
Photograph: Zach Long

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