Pop-up Events in Reno: What They Are & Why They’re Great!

A Pop-up Restaurant in Reno, we say? For the uninitiated, it might sound like something involving night-owl Chef Orville Redenbacher catering at UNR. But in the Reno food scene—and even around the world—it’s a whole lot more.

Along with highly mobile food trucks, we’ve watched pop-up events in Reno gain popularity in the last few years as fun, fresh ways to bring people together in a community setting for a day or an evening and enjoy some great food in a fun new setting!

Whether they’re in a park (like Reno Street Food), under a bridge (like Feed the Camel), in a bar patio (like the ones our pals at Pignic Pub & Patio host), they share a few things in common. They make a low impact. Their here-today-gone-tomorrow nature creates an exciting sense of urgency to draw attendees hungry for great food and a new experience. They feel spontaneous (no matter how much planning might go into them!). And they give people like us a really cool new venue to do what we love … without having to buy a restaurant!

In fact, we’ve had the honor to be featured at some really cool pop-up events in some really cool places around our region lately. A couple weekends back we had a blast serving up “farm-to-fork” bites for Urban Roots’ 5th Birthday Bash, right there in the organization’s garden.

And this Friday, we’ll be the “celebrity chefs” (how cool is that?) for one of a series of one-night pop-up events in Lake Tahoe, at the Lake Tahoe Golf Course. As part of Sample the Sierra’s region-celebrating series, we’re pretty excited to prepare four courses made from totally Nevada Grown ingredients paired with local wines. (Wanna go? Hint, hint … Great! Tickets still available here!)

You can see why pop-up events are attractive and fun for caterers like us and local restaurants on wheels. But even some food industry heavy hitters have experimented with the trend, such as when In-N-Out Burger opened a series of restaurants for ONE DAY each across Australia (and sold out of everything, every time).

And it’s not just restaurants. Retailers, music artists launching new records, even cat food vendors have popped up for ephemeral appearances around the world to create buzz, engage customers and have a little fun in the process.
So next time you hear about a pop-up event in Reno, pop over and check it out!