Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Idle Hands Opens Tomorrow in the Former Church & State Space

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Idle Hands opens tomorrow on the second floor of 1236 H Street NE. The new bar is the work of Erik Holzherr, who was responsible for Church & State (which previously occupied the space), and is also behind downstairs neighbor Atlas Arcade, as well as Capitol Hill bar Wisdom. Here's the description from the website:

Idle Hands, DCs freshest interactive bar for drinkers with a gaming problem. Located above Atlas Arcade, IH is like the older brother that always shows up in that sweet, tricked-out Camaro trying to impress that rocker girl with the big hair. Too cool for most arcades, he prefers games of real skill. Our unique neon-church décor is like none other in DC and is the perfect 90s cocoon while you imbibe in our selection of high-end craft beers, wine and unique cutting-edge original cocktails -- nothing is copied here.


Idle Hands keeps the edge sharp on H street with games like giant connect 4, drunken twister with strangers, and confessions with twisted "priests". Feeling like a Boss? Reserve a spot for four on our V.I.P. “Casting Couch”. The game has begun…

Stop by Idle Hands starting at 6pm tomorrow to check the place out. Enjoy free games from 6–7:30pm. A flyer posted to their Facebook page advertises a complimentary grand opening shot for all guests. The new bar is also on Twitter.

15 comments:

Tom said...

God. This sounds horrible. We just couldn't have a low key cocktail bar. I would be embarrassed to go here.

Edwina Francis said...

This is mortifying, and whoever wrote this copy should be ashamed. Not to mention the concept is gross at best and literally dangerous at worst. "Drunken Twister with strangers"? I can guarantee you not a single woman was involved in that conversation. They haven't even opened yet and they've already branded themselves as a place where you can be groped or worse by intoxicated jerks.

Concerned Neighbor said...

As if Bad Habit, Dirty Water, and the other trash themed bars weren't enough, now we've got something that reads like it was funded by Bill Cosby. WTF is Holzherr thinking.

Anonymous said...

Bummed that a tacky theme bar is the direction they took here. It sounds like an overpriced frat party. Oh well.

Anonymous said...

Wow. What in the world is wrong with the owner? What an entire Douchebag. So you change your sophisticated, cocktail bar to a disgusting, sexist, den encouraging potential date rapists? I really cannot understand what made him come up with this. Maybe he needs to get laid so he can stop taking his weird sexual desires and frustrations out on our neighborhood or better yet, go fuck YOURSELF.

Joel said...

Not really sure where all this pearl-clutching is coming from. I wandered in during the soft opening on Tuesday and thought it had a fun vibe. Cool art, good beer list, good selection of wines, and great cocktails -- especially the "Die Hard". it's kinda dive-y, kinda lounge-y, the bartenders were attentive, and there are games to play. This probably sounds crazy, but maybe check it out for yourselves before trashing it.

Anonymous said...

Joel: I'm not about to check out any place that treats sexual assault like a joke. It's bad enough that I can feel unsafe in many bars; it's another thing altogether when the owner thinks it's funny or "sexy".

Anonymous said...

So I visited there the other night with a couple friends and the place really gives me the creeps. I mean there were these weird XXX coloring books one of which was literally a book of Vaginas to color (not even kidding). I mean this just feels like a bad idea. It is definitely not a place I would want to get drunk in as a woman. I mean guys can be creepy enough at these dirty dive-ish bars without the encouragement of naked Vaginas to color and a secluded room with a red light. Seriously?? We need to start some kind of a petition to get bars like this out of our community so we dont see them popping up everywhere on the strip. So disrespectful on so many levels.

Anonymous said...

My wife and I loved Church and State, so we decided to give idle hands a chance despite the terrible terrible skeevy press copy they put out. What we were presented with broke my heart. Enough of the decour of the old Church and State remains to remind the patron of what once was, but much has been replaced with what I can only assume is a marketing fever dream by the same team that wanted to make the Silver Spring Piratz Tavern into a corporate themed nightmare. Oversized novelty playing cards, oversized novelty connect 4, adult twister, and other "games" litter the bar. The new concept seems to be trying to cash in on the board game / adult gaming moment, but misses the mark so completely as to be parody. On offer are not games for you and some friends to socialize around while drinking your favorite cocktails, these are showpieces to take instagram pics of and post ironically. And the bar expects you to pay to play. Gone too is the great staff who crafted the cocktails that I would evangelize to friends. Now the cocktail list comprises your standard bar fare (an old fashioned, a manhattan, a martini, etc.) with a twist. The twist apparently being that they are mixed poorly. We ordered two drinks off of the "strong" menu and were served overly sweet, watery, riffs on classic cocktails. I think the most painful part of this new direction is the tone deafness of the entire affair. In this #metoo and post Charlottesville moment the owners have opted to revamp the bar with overtly misogynistic (who the hell names the back room "the casting couch") theming and dismiss (or perhaps they wisely chose to leave) the consummately professional and talented existing staff and replace them with a pair of bros. The new bar staff didn't know what went in their drinks, weren't sure how to use the payment system, but were willing to incorrectly correct other patrons on the pronunciation of their off brand movie themed cocktails. Aside from the customer always being right, it actually is pronounced recall (n. ˈrēˌkôl) when talking about the Schwarzenegger movie, not recall (v. rəˈkôl) unless you need constant reminders on what goes in that drink.

Oh, and I'll put the lack of 20% off for your grand opening down to not knowing how to work the payment system, but the free shots of flavored liquor as an attempt to offload product you don't have the expertise to make actual drinks out of was insulting.

dbrighthaupt said...

Anonymous writes in a familiar tone ~ interesting. It’s been my experience that anonymous type folk are just the type to be there at the peek of happy hour. But it will be alright �� seriously folks-
It’s a cool zen bar. For any one opiated soul who ops not to check it out for themselves, there’s been quite a few who have. I noticed groups there enjoy this cinnamon fireball and this extremely high caffeine coffee infused original (I think that’s called ‘Usual Suspect’ one of my favorite movies), and were enjoying a game of Jenga and an old fashioned cookout style card game. The diverse crowds were striking conversations of nostalgia over classic grooves.
Check it out before settling on a final 3rd Party opinion ��
Sincerest peace in these troubled times y’all

dbrighthaupt said...

First time here. If I can edit - ‘ opinionated’. Oh well humblest thanks.

Anonymous said...

if you don't want to play mysognist patriarchical drunken twister, you don't have to. don't blow Aziz Ansari and scream rape.

Anonymous said...

The owner is a big fat looser. There is no way I am ever going near this bullshit and I live a few blocks away. As a man with a girlfriend, I could see and hear the concern and frustration in her when she was telling me about this place. I would never want her to feel even remotely unsafe or disrespected when she is just trying to have a good time. Its not funny, cool, or commercial and the owner should not be taking these subjects so lightly. Im sure he thinks he is right in his use of sexist theme to make money, most chauvinists do.

Lyndsay Webb said...

It's like you transcribed every thought I had about this place directly from my brain! I think we must have been there at the same time?! Those free shots were garbage, and if Ron and Marquise no longer work there, I'm not even interested in seeing if the place improves.
And I was ALSO corrected on my pronunciation of Total Recall, but I figured the dude was just trolling me.
This stings almost as bad as losing Red Palace.

Mojotron said...

And I was ALSO corrected on my pronunciation of Total Recall

That detail cracked me up. Any chance it was this guy?