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Top of the Pops

Top of the Pops

Pop-up restaurants are out to prove that they’re no flash in the pan.

By: Eve Thomas

Chefs are the rock stars of the foodie world and pop-up restaurants are their sold-out shows. Like pop-up shops – those temporary venues that offer emerging designers an affordable start-up space, and established brands a hot spot in which to sell their limited editions – pop-up restaurants are a guaranteed way to build buzz. Sometimes a pop-up is the perfect way to mark a special occasion. To celebrate The Fairmont Hotel Vancouver’s 75th anniversary, the hotel reopened The Roof Restaurant + Bar, a 15th-floor dining venue that debuted in 1939 and was a humming social hub well into the sixties. The restored space pays tribute to its past with a retro menu (think prime rib and classic cocktails) and will stay open through fall 2014, when the hotel’s new restaurant and lounge is set to open.

Other pop-ups are purely seasonal. In Montreal, Canada, urban sugar shack
La Cabane salutes spring in the city’s Old Port with a month of maple-infused menus. Once summer hits, hungry visitors can head to nearby Muvbox, an upcycled shipping container that sells buttery lobster rolls and creamy clam chowder until October (weather permitting).

While the concept of a pop-up restaurant implies an expiry date, some are just destined to stick around. What was supposed to be a temporary treat for fans of Nobuyuki “Nobu” Matsuhisa’s award-winning Japanese-meets-South American cuisine turned into a permanent location – Nobu Fairmont Monte Carlo – last December due to high diner demand. Proof positive that once you pop, you can’t stop.


Photo: Johannes Abeling/Hollandse Hoogte/Redux


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