Pops of vivid colour, aromas of smoky chorizo and the hiss of craft beer cans cracking. The new Stomping Ground La Boca pop-up at Arts Centre Melbourne is the perfect embodiment of everything that’s great about summer.
The pop-up beer garden brings a small slice of Argentina to Melbourne, coinciding with the premier of Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s EVITA. La Boca, named after the famous Buenos Aires neighbourhood at the mouth of the Riachuelo River, is a multisensory delight. With craft brews from Melbourne’s Stomping Ground Brewing Co and snacks from restaurant, Asado, guests are taken on a journey to this vibrant part of the world.
Colourful and bright, the pop-up beer garden allows you to sit back in a deck chair, and take in the casual, yet stimulating surrounds. The beer list is full of floral and fruity concoctions. The La Boca pilsner, brewed especially for this summer pop-up, goes down a treat. The Watermelon Smash is a lip-smacking fruity sour that will wash over you like a gentle wave.
The culinary offering from the team at Asado is equally moreish. Smoky, salty and delicious, each dish celebrates the true essence and passion behind Argentinian cooking. The choripán, an Argentinian sandwich where a fluffy white baguette is wrapped around a lightly charred hunk of chorizo and dressed with tangy chimichurri, is a perfect accompaniment to the easy-drinking La Boca pilsner. Likewise, the slightly sweet cheese and corn empanadas are enhanced with every sip of the mouth-watering Guava Smash from Stomping Ground. For private events, this type of menu is sure to be a hit with guests – choripan in one hand, craft brew in the other. After all, life is all about balance.
The La Boca beer garden is a destination within itself, coming alive every night with musical and cultural performances and dance. The ambience, with the festoon lighting strung overhead and the distant lapping of the National Gallery fountains in the background, centres you in this multicultural experience. And for semi-private events or meeting breaks, you could treat guests to exclusive use of the space, creating an instantly casual yet fun atmosphere they’re unlikely to forget.
Arts Centre Melbourne is a venue for all seasons, and summer is no exception.