Maharlika (a.k.a food so good, I was dancing in my seat)
I have had food that has made me sink back into my seat. I’ve had food that’s made me stop the waitress not just for more water, but to exclaim how in love I was with everything I was chewing at that moment. I’ve even had food that’s made me moan a little.
I don’t think I’ve ever had food that literally made me dance in my seat. Thank you, Maharlika.
Last night, after scouring countless menus, providing several (and by several, i mean far too many) options to QA and AP for dinner, we democratically decided on Maharlika, which is a Filipino restaurant on 1st, between 6th and 7th (right around the corner from the New York version of Brick Lane/Indian food row). Here’s what I (and the group!) thought:
First impressions: For a shabby exterior, make way for a cozy, semi-hip interior. Plenty of seating at 8 on Monday night. Friendly bartender. Not too cramped space-wise for an ethnic food hotspot. Why are 80s jams playing? Makes no sense, but I’m digging it regardless.
The drinks: I had read too much about Pacquiao’s punch not to try it. And WOW am I glad I did. I’m not sure why this works…pineapple, ginger, and absinthe spray are among the ingredients, but I’m not complaining. I was in cocktail heaven, and getting tipsy after a third of the drink. They’re not kidding when they say this drink packs a punch. AP joined me on that round, and then he and QA both tried other random cocktails with ingredients like cardamom and cucumber, which were delicious and weird as well.
The food: We’re all big eaters, which I’m happy to say, the waiter gauged to a tee, and helped us order just the right amount of food. Well done, waiter, well done. He also recommended the Pork Confit which ended up being one of our favorite dishes (and I don’t even like pork usually!) Falling off the bone good. The Lonnga hot dog knocked my socks off. Seriously, if you go and don’t order it I will disown you. Eating this hot dog was what spurned my dancing to 80s jams while chewing. Had. To. Happen. Sorry, Asiadog, this one wins (the Mel & Steve is a close second). Moving on, the Arroz Caldo was as good of a porridge as I’ve ever had. And the Filipino fried chicken…well this is going to seem like a high compliment, but it tied with Thomas Keller’s pop-up fried chicken/BBQ stand in Napa. Not joking, that good, that perfectly cooked. In comparison to all of these dishes, the Puqui Puqui (roasted eggplant, pureed with egg and tomato) was slightly disappointing. But tasty nonetheless.
The dessert: Plantains, deep fried in a wrap, sitting in dragon berry coulis. I think the perfect way to end a meal is something banana/plantain.
The conclusion: Get there already. Get the punch. Get the hot dog. Get something with pork. And invite me to come?
P.S. If you don’t believe me (blasphemy), listen to the Immaculate Infatuation guys. Their review.
"It’s not just for landing your next job anymore. In the event of a natural disaster, LinkedIn has a new service—LinkedIn For Good—that will connect people in need with people with the skills to help them. It’s all part of their desire to increase volunteerism, and create social change with human capital."
…too cool. What an idea. Interested to see how this takes off.
If I could keep my eyes open long enough, I’d be writing all about my dinner tonight, as it was fairly epic. And by epic, I mean I was dancing in my seat humming along to 80s jams while alternatively chewing and sinking back into my seat with satisfaction. I’ll reveal where I went tomorrow, when I can do it justice.
I am so curious to see how Joanne, the new restaurant by Daddy Gaga and Art Smith, is received. Wonder if it will be any good. It’s a funny combo…the Gaga family’s traditional Italian cooking with Art’s Southern specialties.
Grubstreet describes the menu like this:
…dishes like a Caprese salad with fried green tomatoes and grits instead of polenta, Grandma Germanotta’s zucchini fritters, wedding soup with liver dumplings, homemade pastas, oven-roasted chicken, rosemary-focaccia bread, and, according to Smith, “a lot of pies and tarts and things of that sort” for dessert.
n. the habit of forgetting how important someone is to you until you see them again in person, making you wish your day would begin with a “previously on” recap of your life’s various plot arcs, and end with “to be continued…” after those will-they-won’t-they cliffhanger episodes that air just before the show goes back into months of repeats.
EA & JG finally drove north to nyc, which made for a fantastic weekend. Seeing the tree at rock center, walking the highline, strolling through the holiday market, browsing at strand, sushi at the loop, 80s night with rubix cube at the canal room…I am definitely tired out and not ready for the work week, but super psyched that I’ll see them again next weekend in baltimore.
It’s nice to have two big cities that feel like home.