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Pop-Up King Eric Rivera of Addo Secures Permanent Space in Ballard

He’ll be working out of coffee shop Royal Drummer

Eric Rivera
Bookstore Bar/Official

Seattle pop-up royalty Eric Rivera has locked down a second permanent space in Ballard for Addo, his form-shifting Seattle pop-up series.

So does that mean Addo is going to be a brick-and-mortar restaurant? Not quite — Rivera says it’s to be more of a miscellaneous testing site for people with grand food designs — an “incubator”.

“Whether it’s people at home who want to bring something to market or test something, or...a friend of mine who’s got a daughter who’s a Girl Scout, she’s going to be perched in front of Addo one day for brunch.”

Addo will be sharing a space with Australian-leaning coffee shop Royal Drummer, who Rivera says wanted to focus on coffee in the morning and open the space to something else at night (the cafe’s hours will shorten slightly, so it will close around 5 p.m.). He also wanted to get into Ballard and offer something that fits the neighborhood’s vibe, so that means keeping it relatively casual and offering a range of approchable prices for ticketed events.

“Maybe some tasting menus but nothing too crazy,” Rivera tells Eater. “Work with some chefs in town who’ve been laid off or fired, or who want to do their own thing, get their own name and get them up and running.”

That means this iteration of Addo won’t be as formal as the space that Rivera currently uses (and will continue to operate) on East Madison, in the same space as Coffee Flour Lab.

Rivera says he doesn’t want to just offer a space to people, but he wants to bring in restaurant and food pop-ups and help them find their feet, and possibly move on to greater things.

“I want to figure out a way with Addo as a brand to help bring those things together and incubate people, not [to] be this thing like, ‘Here’s my restaurant blah blah blah,’ but to work on logistics with people....trying something so you don’t have to blow thousands on a restaurant?”

Rivera’s crispy Puerto Rican lechonera pork is also set to be offered out of the Ballard Addo periodically — yet that pop-up, Lechoncito, is eventually set to get a the full brick-and-mortar treatment elsewhere; the same goes for a more formal Rivera dining project Silva, which will set up in the Snoqualmie/Snohomish area.

The Addo space is set to open by the beginning of March — tickets for the early pop-ups and events in the space are already available online, too (note that some tickets on the site are for the Capitol Hill Addo).

Royal Drummer Cafe

6420 24th Ave NW, Seattle, WA 98107 (206) 420-7723


6420 24th Ave NW, Seattle, WA 98107 Visit Website