Get ready for authentic Filipino cuisine at Earthbound Beer throughout 2020. The Fattened Caf, a Filipino barbecue pop up and catering company, has announced a monthly residency at Earthbound Beer.
Starting Jan. 31, you can find Los Angeles transplants and husband-and-wife duo Darren Young and Charlene Lopez Young serving up their authentic Filipino food at the Cherokee Street brewery once a month. While their specialty is Filipino barbecue, guests can also expect a Filipino brunch in February and other specialties like a Kamayan-style dinner and possibly Filipino baked goods. They hosted a pop up at the brewery one other time last year.
Charlene says that the collaboration came together pretty simply; the couple lives on Cherokee Street with their eight-month-old daughter. The owner of one of the street's shops, The Bricoleur, suggested that they collaborate with Earthbound. At the time, they thought the brewery space was too big for then, until someone else suggested it a few months later.
"And then we were walking by Earthbound one day with our stroller and just said, 'Let's talk to whoever's in here.'"
After some emails and conversations, The Fattened Caf hosted a one-time pop up at the brewery.
"It was chaotic," Charlene says. They had 300 plates and sold out in three hours.
After the success of the first pop up, Earthbound asked if Darren and Charlene were interested, and they said, "Let's do it."
Charlene, who is Filipino, says that the pair is trying to replicate food that you would find on the streets in the Philippines.
"We stick to authentic flavors, and what you get on the corner of the street in the Manila," she says.
Darren explains that Filipino barbecue is different than American barbecue. Instead of meat being cooked low and slow, it's instead cooked with direct heat using charcoal. Charlene makes all of the sides: garlic rice, cucumber salad, pickled papaya (which is her grandmother's recipe) and pancit, their vegan option, which is rice noodles with stir-fried vegetables.
The two do not consider themselves chefs – they both have very different jobs working at nonprofits during the day – but through their food, they are trying to foster a sense of community, especially for those who are Filipino.
"I want Filipinos in the St. Louis community, or in Missouri, to have a place where they can find themselves, to feel like they're at home, to feel like they belong here," Charlene says. "When I feel like I miss my family in the Philippines, I know that I could cook myself some food and be right there with them."
Besides the residency at Earthbound, The Fattened Caf is planning other pop ups, so keep an eye on their Facebook page to see where to find them next.
The Fattened Caf, facebook.com/TheFattenedCaf
Earthbound Beer, 2724 Cherokee St., Cherokee Business District, St. Louis, Missouri, 314.769.9576, earthboundbeer.com