In August of 2018, I met a chef working for a high-class gastronomy. We were having drinks at a lodge of a friend of ours in Austria. We were chattering about how we both had some spare time in a couple of months and how cool it would be to open up a restaurant for a limited time – I saw these concepts during my time in London all over the place. And I was in Japan the year before and loved to have a cold beer and Ramen, these soups with noodles and meat or fish and veggies – what’s not to like?
So we said, if we find a suitable location in Mannheim, we should try to cook and sell Ramen & Beer in our own way.
After some time of preparation and quite some struggle finding the right place with the right conditions, we could say: We are opening our own restaurant in November 2018! We were excited, proud and a definitely a little bit scared – how many people would come? How will they like the food?
Swipe forward: January 14th, 2019. Two days ago, we had our last opening night from „Ramenstube“, the popup restaurant. We are totally exhausted, but absolutely happy to have made this decision. We were open for 7 weeks, in the first week 4, in the other six weeks only 3 nights from 5pm until 9pm. What happened:
We sold more than 1.600 Ramen in 22 days! We got 95% positive customer feedback! We had an experience, that we will always appreciate! And more than 200 people asking us: so why does it stop now? What are you going to do next?
I always responded in the same way: nothing! It’s a popup. And this is the main point of such a concept: it stops at some point. We never had the intention to sell soups for the rest of our lives – we wanted to get this experience, get the feedback, have fun – and of course make some money with it. And everything turned out to work 🙂