Filipino pop-up Maharlika’s debut at the DeKalb Market in the first week of August (the market opens tomorrow, but some vendors aren’t ready yet) isn’t the restaurant’s only upcoming project. Cofounder Nicole Ponseca tells us she has two more locations in the works, including a planned six-month pop-up at 111 First Avenue in the East Village where brunch will be offered beginning July 30 and dinner will be slowly phased in, with a full bar offered for both meals. On the brunch menu, look for favorites like sizzling sisig and new dishes such as champorado and tuyo, chocolate rice porridge with dried fish. When the evening meal is introduced, you’ll find dishes like goat adobo, sweet longganisa sausage sliders, and short rib kare kare, which you might have tried if you caught one of Maharlika’s Sunday night dinners at 5 Ninth. The East Village finished space will resemble a “Pinoy home” circa the seventies or eighties, says Ponseca; for warm days, there’s a back yard with garden.
Ponseca also let slip more details on the DeKalb Market shipping-container housed outpost: That’ll be a “siopao shack,” offering the steamed buns with “non-traditional pinoy fillings,” and a “sari sari store,” a roadside convenience store with produce and snacks. And starting the first weekend in September, Maharlika will pop up Saturdays and Sundays at the new Kinfolk Studios space at 90 Wythe Avenue, offering brunch and another sari sari store. To help with all of this, the team has hired a new sous-chef, Lordfer Lalicon, who’s previously worked at Blue Hill and Morimoto. Between these developments and the newly opened Sa Aming Nayon on First Avenue, things are looking up for Filipino food in New York after all.