Simple is what brothers Billy and Bobby Acon had in mind when they decided to open Pop’s. They envisioned a place where adolescents and families could gather and enjoy a moderately priced meal in a fun, relaxing environment.
The menu is short on quantity but long on quality like the Angus burger, served any way you like with the traditional crinkle fries and of course, shakes. They also offer a chicken burger, wings and ribs. Pops will be open on the 4th of July.
IN. Why did you get into this business?
BA. We were born into the business. My father migrated to Venezuela from China and open a Chinese restaurant, eventually growing to eight locations, all Chinese food. Billy and I came to the US about five years ago and opened two Chinese restaurants. This is our first non-Chinese food venture.
IN. Do you want your children to get into this industry?
BA. Don’t know, my son is only one so he has awhile. I want him to do whatever makes him happy. Billy’s older daughter is doing some part-time work in the Miami Beach restaurant.
IN. What’s the proudest moment of your career?
BA. Seeing our business grow, first in Venezuela and now here.
IN. How does food help humanity connect and understand each other?
BA. I consider myself more Latino than Asian, but in both cultures the family meal is a critical part of our culture.
IN. Should reality food shows like Top Chef be exiled and forgotten or do you believe they nurture and support a new generation of passionate chefs?
BA. It has pros and cons, but mainly pro. It shows cooking as a profession which is good as high turnover affects the quality of the industry. They also allow us to expand our knowledge, to look for new ways to prepare meals, or run our restaurants.
IN. In a few words, quickly, share your feelings about:
BA. I respect it. I actually became a vegetarian for a while to try it. There are extremes, some become hardcore, I look at it not as a diet but as a lifestyle choice.
IN ---gluten free?
AB. I know some people suffer from allergies, guess if you can’t consume it there is not much you can do.
IN --organic everything?
BA. Not necessarily. Today there is so much mass production of everything but some level of organic product is good.
IN ----food waste and disposable containers, i.e. plastics and dumped food legally prevented from going to homeless kitchens?
BA. In total agreement. We throw away too much, generate too much waste. Using disposables is more practical that we some time opt for that versus what is good for the environment.
IN ----Neighborhood farmer's markets or big chain grocers?
BA. The convenience of large food chains is hard to ignore.
IN ---Anthony Bourdain?
BA. I enjoyed and respected him. He overcame so much, he opened a lot of food horizons.
IN. What do you love most about your career?
BA. Get to know a lot of different people. A restaurant is a very social place.
IN. What is your favorite junk food?
BA. A hamburger.
IN. What would people be surprised to know about you?
BA. I have a Doctorate in Chemistry and worked as a forensic chemist.
IN. What’s your advice for someone just starting in your profession?
BA. Be realistic and well informed on all aspects of the business.
If you go:
Pop’s Burger is located in the Square Shopping Center at 260 Crandon Blvd. You can reach them at 786-401-7474. They open M-S at 11:45 am until 9 pm, 9:45 pm on Saturdays. Sunday hours are 12:30 pm to 9 pm.