The impermanence of a pop-up is half their joy, right? It pairs well with the fleeting, gregarious days of summer before everyone bunkers down into their caves for the winter again. Make the most of these long days with our pick of unmissable pop-ups to try this August. But book now, because soon they’ll be gone…
Photo: Bun House
1 Issho-Ni sushi pop up at the Madison Rooftop Terrace, City
The hip east-side Izakaya-style food joint has teamed up with Madison to launch a summer sushi pop-up on the Manhattan-inspired restaurant’s rooftop terrace. It is serving up sashimi and sushi, as well as cocktails and a cracking view of St Paul’s Cathedral and London’s cityscape beyond. To ensure you enjoy the warmer weather in style, the Madison Rooftop Terrace has been transformed into a boho oasis complete with rattan daybeds, sofas and chair and a swathe of greenery. Open Thursday to Sunday 3pm to 9pm.
One New Change, EC4M 9AF; madisonlondon.net
2 Chef Joo Won at Bun House, Chinatown
Fresh from a recent sell-out residency at Carousel, Won takes over the top floor of this Chinatown fave along with his wife and pastry chef Sujin. The pair will serve up a selection of sharing plates that bridge Asian and western cuisine and are made with wonderous flavour combos. Try the kimchi and cheddar risotto (it’s a fact – the kimchi and sharp cheese combo is a treat) topped with a poached egg and crispy seaweed. There’s also a take on stew, in the form of slow-cooked lamb in pear and soy sauce, seasoned with cucumber and goji berries. Won’s signature JFC (Joo’s Fried Chicken) also makes an appearance, as does an array of umami, sweet and salty dishes.
Running from August 5 to until October 4; 26-27 Lisle Street, WC2H 7BA; book via the website; bun.house
So this one isn’t a pop-up. Rather, it’s a final farewell to a year long enterprise that was engendered by the pandemic and the need to find new ways to connect yet stay well away from each other too. A reprieve from the forced working from home, as well as a bang-up kitchen, The Tramshed Project is now closing its doors with a flame-grilled send off. Chefs Andrew Clarke – who was at the helm of the dynamite London Fields Courtyard BBQ pop-up – and Kirk Haworth have a cook off of sorts – meat vs veg; Clarke vs Haworth. Diners choose from a three-course meal which is either meaty or plant-based.
Sunday August 8, although the restaurant is open for regular service until then; 32 Rivington St, EC2A 3LX; tramshedproject.com
4 Summer Sunset Series Searcys at The Gherkin
One of the best things about summer is a sunset, enjoyed at leisure with a drink in hand. The only thing that makes this better is a killer view. Guests are treated to a five-course dinner of seasonal dishes, a cocktail on arrival and two glasses of wine as well as cracking view of London as the sun winds down for the day.
On every Friday evening throughout August; £119 per person; 30 St Mary Axe, EC3A 8BF; searcysatthegherkin.co.uk
5 Sam’s Riverside at Phoenix Farm, White City
For those of you wishing to escape the city but don’t really have the time, Sam’s Riverside heads to Phoenix Farm for four alfresco dinners in August that are both bucolic and urban. The farm has more than 40 varies of edible things, and diners will eat among the vegetable patches, tables lit up by candles and decorated with freshly cut flowers for rustic goodness. The five-course menu which is cooked on-site boasts seasonal and local flavours – think courgettes, elderflower, horseradish, cured Cornish halibut and Hereford aged ribeye steak
7pm start, £85pp which comes with a glass of Gusbourne English Sparkling Brut on arrival, add another £27.50 for wine pairing; vegetarian and vegan menu available; book at email@example.com; hega.org.uk
6 On Special at Larry’s, Peckham
For August, hipster all-day diner Larry’s partners up with a handful of the most buzzy chefs about to create a ephemeral, collaborative menu that lasts just a week for each chef. Guest culinary wizzes are invited to do their take on Larry’s New-York inspired grub. James Cochran from Islington’s 12:51 kicks off the pop-up with a buttermilk fried chicken sandwich and Selin Kiazim of Oklava draws on her Turkish Cypriot heritage with a crispy pomegranate glazed lamb breast. Also making an appearance are dishes by Nud Dudhia, co-owner of Breddos Tacos, and Ixta Belfrage who co-authored Ottolenghi’s best-seller Flavour.
Starts Tuesday, August 3 and continues into September; featured chef changes each week; booking advised; Unit 5, 12-16 Blenheim Grove, SE 15 4QL; larryspeckham.co.uk