Rabbit Hole – Root is Ann Arbor’s new nightclub, 210 S 1st St, featuring over 100 drink selections, special event nights, steady roster of DJ’s and unique design, providing a vibrant ambiance rarely seen throughout the city.
If the Circ Bar was the fun-loving uncle of the Ann Arbor nightclub scene, then the Rabbit Hole – Root is the cool-hipster cousin. The nightclub is owned and operated by Krazieye Productions (Owners of the Circ bar), with siblings Roger Ahn and Grace Ahn at the helm.
What makes the Rabbit Hole Root unique is its stunning design and eccentric atmosphere. Crafted as a former speakeasy bar, this building has a wine cellar and dates over 170 years.
This historic architecture crafts the nightclub into different sections that range from a dance floor for customers to vibe to their favorite tracks, a bar area for those who want to enjoy a drink and a backway stone path with subtle lit booths for those who want to slink away to enjoy a private conversation amongst their company.
Alistar Dickinson, a manager at Rabbit Hole — Root, praised the nightclub’s design as one of their best attributes.
“This is a beautiful space,” Dickinson said. “We have the DJs and the visual set up. You can come and dance on the weekend. We have a deep liquor collection and an eclectic drink menu. You can come, have a new experience and try a drink you have not tried before. Also, we have these other nooks and crannies where you can bring a date or get together with friends and actually have a conversation. You can choose between something intimate and secluded or getting crazy on the dance floor.”
One highlight of the nightclub is its rotating list of specialty drinks. According to Dickinson, the Rabbit Hole — Root drink menu shifts week by week with the occasional event or holiday-specific drinks to align with national festivities, such as their limited-time New Year’s Eve cocktail, which featured infused strawberries on a Campari base to create a beautifully-red refreshing treat.
“We have seven house drinks that we are always going to have on the menu,” Dickinson said. “We are always rotating a list of six to seven drinks. We did drinks for Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders last month and we have Pride drinks going now. We try to keep drinks rotating and having different items for the month.”
In addition to their unique drink menu, for those feeling adventurous, Dickinson recommends asking for their omakase special, where bartenders select cocktails for the customers.
“We usually have a mystery drink with crazy ingredients,” Dickinson said. “The last one we just served used a miracle berry that alters your taste buds and makes the drink taste different. We had a drink that was too sour. But when you ate the berry, it would balance out the drink to taste like lemonade. We always try to have something interesting like that on the menu.”
Along with an impressive drink menu, the Rabbit Hole — Root maintains a consistent roster of DJs led by Todd Osborn, Dan Bain and Ben Scott who rotate nightly.
In addition to the set of DJs, the Rabbit Hole — Root recently started offering themed nights on Thursdays, such as their drag night.
“The weekends are always going to be about the DJs” Dickinson said. “We started opening Thursdays to focus on the drink selection with different bourbon deals and events. This week is drag night, but there will be different events with different themes.”
While the nightclub is still finding its footing in the Ann Arbor community, Dickinson says everyone is welcome to enjoy their music and eclectic drink selection.
“It’s a great place to end the night,” Dickinson said. “It’s beautiful in the summer, and we are open late so people can come down and spend some of the night with us. Come hang out with us and get a drink.”
Rabbit Hole — Root is 21+. For those wanting to visit the nightclub, doors open Thursday – Saturdays from 8 p.m.-2 a.m. Entry is free before 10 p.m. and $5 after.
For more information visit rootannarbor.com or call 734-780-0778.
Antonio Cooper is a freelance journalist from Detroit, Michigan. His coverage of music festivals and interviews with local celebrities appeared in The E-Current Magazine, The Detroit Metro Times, XXL Magazine, RichMagDigital, The Ann Arbor Observer, and Pop Magazine.