Pop Up Cafe
620 O'Farrell St. (between Hyde and Leavenworth)
Phone: (510) 815-5643
The short-lived Acme Burgerhaus in the Tenderloin has new life in the form of Pop Up Cafe, a space that now hosts a rotating offering of chefs and cuisines throughout the week. General manager Brian Tran filled us in on the new spot, which quietly opened a couple weeks ago.
Now in full swing, it spans weekday breakfast and lunchtime hours with a streamlined menu of dishes like classic eggs and bacon, omelettes and French-inspired sandwiches like the Croc' Mister (ham, cheese, mushrooms, bechamelle) and Croc' Lady (bacon, cheese, egg, bechamelle). Then, it launches a different evening service altogether, with dinner seven nights a week spanning Southern barbecue, Cambodian cuisine, Cajun and more.
On Monday night, look for Cambodian and Laotian food from chef Sal, who'll be serving up specials like grilled lemongrass chicken, steak with spicy lime anchovy sauce and fried pork spare ribs. Tuesday brings San Diego-style Mexican food from Fritas Shack, who will have dishes like carne asada fries, tacos, and California burritos on offer. On Wednesday and Thursday, it'll be barbecue from Lux Kong of BBQ@Lux, who'll be bringing his brand of Texas-style meats like 18-hour smoked brisket, pulled pork sandwiches, sticky garlic ribs and more to the new spot. And on Friday-Sunday, look out for The Crawfish Spot, which will have Cajun crawfish, shrimp, clams and mussels on the menu.
The rotating menu allows for an energy that Tran says has been his dream. "I invite chefs that love what they do," he told us, and because they don't cook all week in the same space, "these chefs come in and they're excited every day."
Tran also has a solid beer lineup in place, with 13 taps boasting brews from Lagunitas, 21st Amendment, Faction Brewing and more, plus a display fridge stocked with over 30 bottles. They also have red and white house wines available, plus special mango or lychee soju cocktails.
The space has standing room for 50 people, with stools that seat about 25. They're now open 7am-2pm for breakfast and lunch, and are open for dinner (per the schedule above) from 5pm-10pm nightly.
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