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  • Writer's picturePaige Nathan

Pop-Up Restaurants are Pop-ular

Pop-Ups are badass. No, we’re not talking about those ads that pop up and block half the screen when you’re trying to watch the corn kid video; We’re talking about pop-up restaurants, which are taking over the food scene!


What is a Pop-up Restaurant?


A pop-up restaurant is a temporary restaurant hosted in an unexpected space, such as existing restaurants on their off days, bars, brewpubs, chef’s home, event spaces or event an office building. People learn about it by word-of-mouth from those who are already in the know - bloggers, Instagram, Twitter.

Pop-up Restaurants

Why is the idea of a restaurant that’s here today, gone tomorrow so appealing? Because it gives us a thrill to have exclusive and fleeting access to a unique, short-term experience that only some people know about. It’s almost like a secret, which adds to the fun and edginess. Foodies who are looking for a unique and adventurous dining experience follow the underground pop-up food scene.


Established and aspiring restauranteurs love the format, which enables them to test out new concepts or cuisines before making a huge financial investment. The barrier to entry is much lower than with a full-fledged restaurant, which allows new and upcoming chefs, who might never otherwise have the opportunity, to cook and share their own food. Like chef Roy Choi, who launched the food truck phenomenon with his Kogi Korean BBQ Taco truck in LA and now has five restaurants, a book, a TV show, and a line of products at Williams Sonoma, many new and established chefs who do pop ups go on to open some of the most beloved restaurants.


Pop-up Restaurants Atlanta

Pop-ups have become such a popular trend that even Netflix is getting in on the action, popping up inside LA’s Short Stories Hotel with Netflix Bites to market its culinary content.



What Kind of Food Do Pop-Ups Serve?


Because of the lower startup costs, there’s a huge opportunity for chefs to exercise their culinary creativity, and you’ll find pop-up restaurants serving a wide variety of different types of foods. From Ellison Brothers BBQ to HD Prep’s Waygu Smashburgers to GorditasATL’s flavors of Guanajuato, Mexico, there is no end to the types of cuisine you can find at local pop-ups. Sam Flemming calls his up and coming business, Punk Foodie, a love letter and fanzine for the incredibly vibrant Atlanta underground dining scene with a  database of over 800 active

underground chefs and 300 venues.

Punk Foodie Atlanta
Punk Foodie

Why Pop-Ups Are a Great Idea for Corporate Events


Pop-Ups are a versatile choice for group events and can be a great option when you have limited space or are restricted to indoors. They can be adapted for any budget, big or small. Plus, they’re an exciting and interesting way to highlight local chefs and ethnic cuisine and a great way to show appreciation for your employees.

“People always get excited when they see our food truck or when we come out for a pop up event,” says Will Ellison of Ellison Brothers BBQ.

“We’re catering to the needs of those employees, and they know we’re there just for them, as opposed to when we take our truck or tent out to festivals or neighborhoods. For a company of forty or four hundred or four thousand, it’s a huge convenience for employees when they don’t have to get in their cars and go somewhere else for lunch. Whether it’s to kick off a holiday or just because, employees love it when they get a delicious homecooked meal at work.”


Create A Pop-Up Chef Experience for Your Team


Simply Food Trucks is passionate about great food and helping deliver worry-free events. No matter what you’re planning, we are your one-stop-shop for an amazing event. Reach out to us today for more information on a pop-up chef experience for your group!

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