By the time Hy Vong closed on October 30, partners Kathy Manning and Tung Nguyen had had quite a week of ups and downs. The restaurant owners announced they were closing their Calle Ocho restaurant after over three decades of service, only to be issued a last-minute reprieve by the landlord. Then, the deal fell through and the closure was imminent.
By that time, Manning had made peace with the situation, telling New Times, "We are really going. Tomorrow we are moving the equipment out, and we are going to reopen [somewhere else] if it works."
There was never any doubt in the partners' minds that Hy Vong would go on, with Manning saying, "I don't want to retire, I like what I do and I'm not ready to quit. I don't want to sit down. I'm a really good waitress, that's what I'm really good at."
While awaiting a permanent address, the duo are doing anything but resting on their laurels. The Hy Vong website has just listed a catering section, where the restaurant can come to your home or office. There are also Hy Vong pop-ups, with the next one being held next week.
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From Friday, December 18, through Sunday, December 20, the Bookstore in the Grove will host the Hy Vong pop-up. The hours of the pop-up are 6 to 10 p.m. nightly. The bookstore is also home to an organic coffee shop and is equipped with a small kitchen. Although the menu hasn't been announced, Manning posted on the Hy Vong Facebook page that it will be a full menu, noting, " I am excited about this —I am not much for being without a home!!!"
More importantly, if the pop-up is successful, Manning hopes the bookstore will serve as a permanent weekend host to the restaurant — at least until Hy Vong gets a new home. There is no set seating and reservations are only accepted for parties of five or more. Now is a good time to get a group together so you can ensure a spot. Reservations can be made at hyvong.com.