PufferFish is a tiki bar pop-up store opened in the Bay View tent in 2020. It is the last operation after the Lost Whale bar. It was closed on Saturday, and the tent that served as its home was demolished on November 1.
In other words, this is the last few days of the pufferfish in the tent, which is the savior of the bar pandemic. But it may be more like "see you later" than "goodbye". Its future is yet to be determined, but possibilities include other pop-up windows in Lost Whale or elsewhere, or even its own physical store.
PufferFish will be open from Thursday to Saturday at 5 pm, serving classic and modern tiki cocktails. The Halloween party of the Lost Whale is held at the same time, but will last until Sunday, indoors and in tents. (One Halloween drink will be red rum: Banksy and Bacardi aged rum, lime, cinnamon raspberry syrup and vegan foam, with a red splash on top, in homage to the "shining" movie.)
The tents must be dismantled as ordered by the city government-officials allowed the ventilated tents to be raised during the first few months of the pandemic as a way to allow customers to be served more safely and to keep the bar open.
"They were very, very kind to us," said Tripper Duval, who worked with Daniel Berez at Lost Whale, 2151 S. Kinnickinnic Ave. In particular, he said, because the bar did not apply for a permit first-it did apply for a permit. It's too late.
Duval recalled that this was a "we need to complete this work and complete it immediately, otherwise we will have to close". He said that the permit is usually valid for six months, and now the tent has been set up for one and a half years.
Related: Behind Lost Whale, the Bay View bar, a tiki popup called PufferFish is under development
JC Cunningham, the bar manager who helped guide PufferFish, said that announcements about the next steps will be made in the coming weeks.
Cunningham said that Duval and Berez recently purchased the Lost Whale Building, opening up more possibilities.
He pointed out that the PufferFish pop-up store was planned to only run for a few months until Lost Whale could stand up again during COVID-19, but the Milwaukee accepted it.
"The pop-up window lasted for more than a year. I feel very lucky," Cunningham said.
Related: Lost whales at Bayview are a great way to toast to the passing days of summer
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