How Pop-Ups Are Changing the F&B Landscape

Read on for a glimpse at how pop-up F&B venues are shaking up the scene, and creating a flavor all of their own!

No longer limited to fashion and PR, pop-ups have revolutionized the way brands connect with customers – and the food and beverage industry is no exception. In fact, over the past year F&B pop-ups have emerged as both innovators and pioneers of the global pop-up revolution.

A unique experience

According to Eventbrite analysts, the ‘Experiential Diner’, concept has made a serious mark. From surprise locations and exclusive ‘meet and greets’ with chefs to themed menus and underground supper clubs, the shift towards pop-up F&B venues is pushing the boundaries of the orthodox brick and mortar restaurant experience. Attendees agree, with 75% of diners confirming that they’re happy to pay a premium for a unique pop-up dining experience.

Pop-ups vs catering

Soggy sandwiches. Subpar meat. Warm champagne. These are all stigmas that the catering industry just can’t seem to shun. And for good reason. All too often, events settle for lackluster catering companies, simply because there’s nothing better on offer. But what about if pop-ups emerged as a new way to feed and water event goers? Across the globe, there’s a big push underway to replace traditional catering companies with pop-up F&B venues. Not only does this ensure that guests are treated to top quality fare, but it also brings a whole new concept to the event.

For both parties, it’s a valuable opportunity to cross-promote with well-known brands, as well as bring depth and a sense of uniqueness to the guest experience. In Dubai, pop-up cafes like Karak House and Angelina Café have been treating event goers to caffeine fixes with a difference.

Cross promotion

When it comes to cross-promotion, pop-up F&B venues are an incredible tool. Whether trying to promote the F&B brand itself or a completely unrelated party, the allure of an exclusive experience never fails to enchant.

Take the ‘cat cafe’ phenomenon for example. Across the globe, both entrepreneurs and cat shelters have caught onto the feline obsession that’s captivated the world. Largely fuelled by YouTube cat videos, there’s no denying that over the past few years, loving cats has become a trend in itself. Vancouver’s ‘Catfe’ is a fantastic example of just how powerful F&B pop-ups can be. Created in conjunction with the British Columbia Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (BC SPCA), the café serves as a satellite adoption centre. Visitors get to cuddle feline friends, and feast on artisan tea, coffee and treats. The concept created such a buzz, that when Adele came to town she made a special visit to the Catfe.


As the pop-up trend gains momentum, expect to see a huge surge in the number of F&B pop-ups making an appearance in Dubai, London and beyond. From cult cafes serving up lattes at VIP events to celebrity chefs offering diners exclusive ticketed experiences, the pop-up revolution has never tasted so sweet.


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