Food pop-up stalls and trucks have evolved from late night greasers to a growing cult craze that has people following in their herds via social media.
It seems people want to diversify from lengthy and expensive sit down meals to a ‘dabble your taste buds’ experience that won’t break the bank.
This has been shown through the recently announced QV Market Space to include both day and night offerings of street food, the success of the recent International Street Food Festival (http://www.isff.com.au) to the growing subscribers at ‘Where the Truck’, who have created an online guide to where to find your favourite offering.
Nicolas Hanson former café owner and now Head Fryer Guy of Mr.Calamaro, says life has never been busier with a weekly stand at the Queen Victoria Night market as well as other events such as the Formula One, Hanging Rock and more.
Asked about the benefits of a pop-up compared to dedicated space of a café he says, “It gives me the flexibility to try new things in new places constantly. I’m passionate about creating fresh food offerings and that’s what customers come back for”. There are also the obvious benefits of lower over-heads and no long contractual agreements but it’s the involvement with food and Melbourne CBD and country Victoria that has him flipping.
Nic’s energy is synonymous with Carl Casper in the 2014 film Chef. To be able to show your true talents you have to let your creative juices run free - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mLuixZwiIdU
Staple restaurants have even turned their hand to the Pop-up with ‘400 Gradi’ and ‘Hammer&Tong’ joining the line up.
So why now? Social media has been the biggest reason for the growth as it allows people to find and track their favourite pop-ups and trucks at events they are attending. They can share in the experience of the brand even if they could not attend the event.
Nicolas Hanson insists “Branding is key to success given the frenetic atmosphere of festivals with only a few seconds to grab customers attention”. It seems whether at POS or music festivals branding is king.
Some food or thought: