While the Boston area doesn't yet have anything quite as elaborate as Austin's Container Bar, the idea of using refurbished shipping containers for food- and beverage-related purposes is slowly picking up steam. First there was Churn 2, a liquid nitrogen-based ice cream purveyor that put down semi-permanent roots on the Harvard campus last summer and the summer before. (Now, the container is over in Los Angeles and doesn't appear to be coming back here for the summer.)
Over in Somerville's Assembly Row, Somerville Brewing Company's American Fresh Taproom features counter-service food and beer, along with a variety of local products for sale, in a ring of shipping containers surrounding an outdoor beer garden. (In colder weather, it's all inside a big tent.)
And in a construction zone in Kendall Square, there was a proposal to put up either a temporary shipping container marketplace or a set of unique vending machines, but it looks like the area will be used for food trucks instead.
Cinquecento, an Italian restaurant in the South End, is the latest to jump into the container game, having debuted a 12-seat shipping container bar, dubbed the Rosso Patio Bar, on the restaurant's patio over the weekend. The Aquitaine Group, the company behind Cinquecento, intends for it to be an "art installation" as well as a bar, according to a press release. It was designed and built in about a month in collaboration with Brian Quick from Mini Warehousing Inc., a Mansfield-based company that deals with containers for storage purposes — as well as various customizations.
Seating at the new bar is first-come, first-served, and the full restaurant menu is available.