Pop-Up Fatigue During Art Basel

Pop-up restaurants are becoming embedded in the Art Basel landscape of activities, it seems. Some local food lovers are feeling pop-up fatigue, as evidenced by a Twitter conversation yesterday.

Frodnesor, the blogger behind Food For Thought, is eager to recommend restaurants to Art Basel visitors (although please note, his lists are from 2011), but he notes acerbically on Twitter that he’s “tired of hearing about all the Art Basel ‘pop-ups.’ I’m all about popovers now.”

Joshua Marcus and Danny Serfer are chef-owners of Josh’s Deli and Blue Collar, respectively, thus the jokes about opening a Blue Collar pop-up within Josh’s Deli.

“Everything being called a pop-up because there’s a slight change in the business model is exaggerated,” says “Gourmandj“, another Miami food blogger. “Calling something a pop-up because you didn’t have the time to do something properly or as a marketing scheme to get people to go because it won’t be around in the future gives it a negative connotation to me. ”

However, he wonders if it’s just the terminology that bothers him, as Gourmandj is looking forward to visiting some of the pop-up versions of restaurants that he’s enjoyed in the past, like Phuc Mei! and  the Michael’s Genuine cafe in Design Miami: “I think it’s maybe that the word ‘pop-up’ is abused, maybe it’s overused. Should it be called something else?”

For some, all of this conversation about pop-ups might fall into the category of frivolous #ArtBaselProblems, but it also echoes the age old debate about the confluence of art, good taste, marketing and “selling out.”

What do you think about pop-ups during Art Basel and beyond? Are you fatigued? Are there any you’re excited to visit?

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