A Fa La Lot of Fun: Popular Pop-Up Bar Delivers Christmas Cheer

It’s been a holly jolly good time at downtown Leesburg’s Christmas pop-up bar, Fa La La, in its inaugural season.

The restaurant at 14 E. Loudoun St. opened its doors to the public ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday, and has been dishing up Christmas cheer ever since. Crabs and all things nautical from the former Captain Catoctin’s Crabs & Concoctions’ restaurant have made way for tinsel, holly and plenty of good cheer, with every night at Fa La La representing a new holiday theme. There have been trivia nights aplenty, theme nights for everything from ugly sweaters to “Bad Moms,” and of course, plenty of eggnog, mulled wine and other holiday cocktails.

It’s the brainchild of owner Nils Schnibbe and wife, Olivia, who is credited with rolling out the nightly themes that have attracted the masses to the pop-up bar. It’s quickly won the reputation of a lively, festive, can’t-miss holiday feature, with hundreds filling the backyard tent on weekend nights and even weekdays attracting quite the crowd.

Schnibbe confirmed this week that Fa La La will return for the 2018 holiday season.

“It definitely has exceeded our expectations,” he said of the pop-up bar. “We’re really happy with how happy everybody is. It seems like it’s a little escape from what’s happening in the world.”

Fa La La will continue through the end of February, switching to more of a “winter wonderland” theme after New Year’s festivities are complete, Schnibbe said. A big New Year’s Eve bash is also planned, with no tickets needed, he said. After February, a new concept will debut before Fa La La’s holiday reprisal, although Schnibbe declined to share details.

Around the corner from Fa La La, at 24 S. King St., the Schnibbes are planning to debut their newest venture, SideBar restaurant, with a big New Year’s Eve party that will mark its opening day. The dueling parties at Fa La La and SideBar won’t compete with each other, Schnibbe said. “They’re complementary.”

For more information on the restaurants, go to facebook.com/falalaleesburg or facebook.com/SideBarLBG.


The owners of Captain Catoctin’s Crabs & Concoctions’ transformed the space into a pop-up bar called Fa La La. It’s become Leesburg’s go-to spot for holiday-themed drinks and snacks.
[Danielle Nadler/Loudoun Now]