According to the National Restaurant Associate’s “What’s Hot Chef’s Survey, ” Pop-up restaurants are the sixth most popular restaurant concept trend.1 While pop-up restaurants are trendy, they are an influential force in the food industry regarding creative freedom, generating revenue, and creating buzz.
What is a Pop-Up Restaurant?
Pop-up restaurants are temporarily open in various spaces, such as bars, arcades, parks, and theatres. Some pop-up restaurants may already be a part of an existing restaurant or a catering or delivery service. A pop-up restaurant can be open for months, feature itself for a few days, or even as little as a few hours.
This limited availability creates buzz and a sense of urgency for potential customers to try and snag a few items from the menu before the pop-up restaurants disappear from a location close to them.
Purpose of opening a pop-up restaurant
If you’re a chef or restaurateur looking to test the market for a new restaurant concept, gain money for charity, offer lower-cost gourmet food, or just looking for more creative freedom, opening a pop-up restaurant may be a reason to consider.
Pop-up restaurants help restaurateurs and chefs solidify their restaurant concept or test the waters of a new menu item without losing money. Setting up a pop-up restaurant can cost from $2500 to a high of $35,000, depending on the space, concept, and equipment. Examples of some pop-up restaurants that you may have heard of include Otaku Ramen in Nashville, Lazy Bear in San Francisco, and Bruno Pizza in New York.
Pop-up restaurants offer growth opportunities and money-saving solutions for chefs to experiment and see where to focus. Suppose food items or concepts need to be doing better in one city. In that case, moving to another destination is accessible without a financial burden.
Pros of opening a pop-up restaurant
- Ability to test out a new restaurant concept or menu
- Lower startup costs, less overhead costs, and labor
- Culinary creativity
- Flexibility on location and ability to move from city to city to expand customer-base
- Strong marketing power and ability to form a built-in audience
Cons of opening up a pop-up restaurant
- Having to operate with limited resources, equipment, and new territory
- Heavy reliance on PR, marketing, and social media
What are your thoughts on pop-up restaurants, and would you consider opening one? Let us know in the comments.
Goliath Consulting Group is a restaurant consultancy group based in Atlanta, Georgia. To learn more about menu development, digital training, and restaurant operations, contact us to find out more to help grow your restaurant: http://www.goliathconsulting.com or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
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