The ICE CAGE is a glass freezer room located in the lower level of the infamous Mehanata Bulgarian Bar.
Descending the staircase you'll be transported from the Eastern European wood-paneled pub to a Siberian drinking den paradise. A ceiling bursting with snowflake silhouettes and icy white branches looms overhead as you approach the blue glass-topped bar and the madness occurring on the dance floor, the stripper pole, the stage.
To your left you hear festive screams, glasses clinking, raucous laughter: the ICE CAGE is open and a parade of Soviet-uniform clad friends are emerging from the frigid box, grinning like morons.
And then, you realize - it's your turn.
A heavy uniform jacket is thrown over your shoulders and a military cap is placed on your head. In your hand, a shot glass coated in a thick layer of ice materializes. You're shoved inside and the door is locked behind you. There's no escaping now.
You look around - rows and rows of vodka bottles shimmering in the light, you don't know which one to pick first, but you grab one and pour. No time to waste - only a precious two minutes. You take a shot. The crowd outside is cheering you on. A small window slides open. A camera flashes. More cheering - you're feeling brave. You pour another. More cheering! Another! More! Switch bottles, pour, drink! Pour, drink!
Then, just as you're downing your last drop of victory, the door unlocks, a burly hand reaches in and yanks you back into reality, out of the affectionate, frozen arms of the ice cage. But you're warm inside. And the crowd is high-fiving you. Yes, you survived... you're an ICE CAGE survivor.
Covered by television networks, magazines, and nightlife websites alike, the ICE CAGE is an endeavor in NYC drinking you'll never forget (...or maybe just the opposite).