The spirit of Malate’s quintessential bar, Penguin, lives on at this new artists’ haven.
The universe has a way of righting itself. There’s a grand plan at work, and some may attribute it to the strict laws of science and others to the grand mysteries of faith, but either way, it’s all based on a system of beliefs. Pardon the Neil deGrasse Tyson moment of reflection, but when I first walked into Dulo, the Poblacion’s brand new multi-hyphenate venue (it’s a bar-restaurant-coffee shop-art gallery-events space-and probably more) I felt the same good vibes as I did when I first entered Malate’s Penguin a score and seven years ago.
And when I spoke with one of Dulo’s managing partners, Alexa Arabejo, a few minutes into our conversation, she mentioned, unbidden, that based on her research, the closest thing to her new establishment was the revered Penguin of yore. It was a moment of epiphany. Kindred souls separated not by distance, but by decades. Alexa and her co-conspirator and co-owner, Rae Lim Pineda, remind me of the free spirits—the artists, the creatives, the iconoclasts—who frequented Penguin. The universe heard my plea, it seems, for the resurrection of my favorite bar ever. And it even gave a bonus. Penguin was never known for its food, but its spiritual successor’s one of the best new restaurants in the area. It’s time to venture into the far end of the Poblacion, and discover the distinct, diverse delights of Dulo.
1 Entrees and Mains2 Pork Belly Rice Bowl3 Chicken Bao4 Dulo Interiors 04