Yesterday chef Tony Liu told us all about the secrets of good pizza-making and how he’s transformed the dough at Pulino’s. Today we switch gears as he gives us his take on the pop-up restaurant trend.
Pulino’s is extending its late-night menu. Is it trying to be more of a clubby destination?
No, I wouldn’t say that. It’s on Bowery and Houston and there’s a lot of clubs down the road so we’re looking for spillover. You can come here and still keep the tunes going.
Where do you hang out after a late night at the restaurant?
I usually go home, but if not, I like the Spotted Pig or I go to Fuleen in Chinatown. It’s not as crowded as New York Noodletown, but it’s still open late.
What annoys you most when you go out to restaurants?
I’m pretty easy. When I go out I try not to think about service. When you work so much, I try not to focus on it and focus on my dining partner.
What are your favorite hangover foods?
Pancakes. Usually one that comes from a box.
What do you guys have for staff meal at the restaurant?
We eat a whole a bunch of things. A lot of Mexican food. Sometimes I make Asian noodles. Last weekend for Memorial Day we had ribs and corn and watermelon for people who couldn’t go to the beach.
What’s your take on pop-up restaurants?
I think they’re cool.
If you had to open a pop-up what would it be?
It would be something where I could cook anything depending on the season. I’d pick singular items and go from there. Like tomatoes — I’d make a pan con tomate and a Filipino marinated tomato salad.
Sounds cool. So are you going to open this pop-up someday?
No. I think Morandi and Pulino’s are keeping me busy.