There are many benefits of having a pop-up restaurant, that are similar to having a traditional brick and mortar restaurant but without the high cost of opening. A pop-up is a great way for a chef to show off their culinary skills, whilst expanding their culinary careers. This is as well as levelling the dining field and being able to offer gourmet food at an affordable price. Below we have listed the 7-step guide that will help you to launch your very own pop-up restaurant.
There are a number of different reasons for opening a pop-up restaurant. Which not only include building a culinary reputation but allowing a chef to have total freedom and creativity in the kitchen. It is also a great way of testing a restaurant concept, as well as enticing investors and getting the public to try it out. Think about why you want to open a pop-up and focus on this throughout the planning stages.
The location of your pop-up can be anywhere, as long as it meets certain requirements of health and safety. When you are considering locations, think about the size, logistics and dining room. As well as access to electricity, sewer and running water. Another option is to consider an existing restaurant space. Perhaps one that only serves breakfast and lunch. You may have to pay a percentage of the profits to the owners but you are getting a ready-made space and clientele.
To avoid any potential legal troubles, it’s a good idea to apply for public liability insurance, as well as permits and licenses. Check with your local council to check on the licensing laws for your area, as they tend to differ from council to council. Also check the regulations for late-night licences, the sale of alcohol, health and safety and live music or entertainment licence.
People that go to a pop-up restaurant are looking for a food adventure. So ensure your menu is unique and creative. Something that is a little different from anything in the local restaurant scene. It is most likely that you will be providing a prix fixe menu because of the limited amount of space for storage and cooking. Which also means that you will be able to fix an amount per head for the menu.
- Mobile Kitchen
The heart of any restaurant, sometimes home too, is the kitchen. The design of the kitchen within your pop-up will depend on space and whether electricity and water are available. The perks of renting within an existing kitchen are that you don’t have to worry about that! A pop-up allows you to learn the skills of knowing where and when to prepare and serve the food. Which is a great way to test out whether you enjoy the hospitality industry as much as you thought you did. As well as figuring out whether the time is right to open up your own place.
- Temporary Dining Room
When you are setting up your temporary dining room, there are several factors to consider. Should you rent tables, chairs and linens or buy them second-hand? This will most likely be dependent on the longevity of the pop-up and the size of the room. When considering the design of the room, it is a good idea to strike a good balance between having a welcoming atmosphere and a comfortable seating capacity.
Next, it is time to decide whether your restaurant will be open or closed to the public. If it is closed that will mean that it will only be open to the people you invite. Once you have decided this, a great place to advertise your pop-up is on social media. Perhaps sharing your specials and images of the food to entice customers to come to the restaurant.
Now you are equipped with the foundations of how to launch a pop-up restaurant. It won’t be easy but we are sure it will be worth it. Good luck!