The Upper East Side dining scene is getting a little more Latin flavor, thanks to a seasoned Long Island restauranteur set to bring authentic South American cuisine to the neighborhood later this year under the name Maria Mulata Colombian Restaurant.
Named after a bird indigenous to Colombia, the new 540-square-foot 50-seat eatery will soon be under construction on the ground floor of 1007 Lexington Avenue, a landmarked building between East 72nd and 73rd Streets, a representative for Maria Mulata told Community Board 8’s Street Life Committee, while seeking a liquor license recommendation Tuesday night.
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Maria Mulata owner Diana Carrillo previously opened the Chicken Coop Colombian Restaurant on Rockaway Avenue in Valley Stream in 2010, which not only survived the pandemic closures but will celebrate its 13th anniversary this fall.
As for what to expect from Maria Mulata, Carrillo tells Upper East Site the menu will be “similar, but distinct” from that of Chicken Coop, which features an assortment of traditional Colombian eats, such as grilled steak, chicken and fish, plantains, rice and beans, ceviche and tamales made the Colombian way.
Due to the building’s landmark status, the planned renovations — including new kitchen equipment — need approval from the New York City Landmark Preservation Commission, which was already underway, according to the restaurant’s attorney Luis E. Rodriguez.
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“We’ve already received some comments, and our architect is reviewing them and getting back to the Landmark Preservation Commission,” Rodriguez explained to the Street Life Committee, “So, we’re hoping that everything goes well with the renovations.”
Upper East Site has learned that Maria Mulata hopes to start serving hungry Upper East Siders this fall, with October eyed for the restaurant’s grand opening.
Once that happens, regular hours will be 11:00 am to 11:00 pm Monday through Thursday, with the restaurant staying open an hour later Fridays and Saturdays. Maria Mulata will close at 10:00 pm on Sundays.
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