Citi Test Kitchen Welcomes Meryenda to Urbanspace Vanderbilt


Along with our partner, Citi, we’re pleased to announce Meryenda and budding restaurateur Edie Ugot as our next chef-in-residence at the Citi Test Kitchen in Urbanspace Vanderbilt. Meryenda, which means "snack" or "pick-me-up" in Filipino, is based on the homestyle cooking and flavors on which Edie grew up. Yes-- there are spicy-sweet marinated pork sliders, crispy veggie spring rolls (lumpia) and Chicken Adobo Bowls in your very-near future!

Chef Edie attended culinary school after securing a Business degree and has always had aspirations to open up her own restaurant. Citi Test Kitchen allows her the opportunity to pursue her passion for food and fulfill the path that she mapped out from the start.

While at the Institute of Culinary Education, Edie found herself externing for one of her food idols, Anita Lo of Annisa and Iron Chef America. That quickly led to a job where she turned out refined Asian-French food from a tiny kitchen for 3 years. In dramatic fashion, a devastating electrical fire wiped out the kitchen and forced her to find a new place to plate. Enter an opportunity cooking for April Bloomfield, another influential woman-from-afar for Edie. Her kitchen was “fast paced, intense, loud, crazy, intoxicating- all in a great way,” according to Edie.

Never one to sit still, Edie has taken leadership positions in several of Bloomfield’s restaurants in recent years. She’s even attempted to get her own concepts off the ground. With Citi’s support and Urbanspace’s platform for connecting chefs to curious diners-- we’re eager to see what she cooks up with Meryenda.

Meryenda represents the debut of Citi Test Kitchen at Urbanspace Vanderbilt, our original food hall.

The kitchen opens on Monday, September 23rd - we’ll try to save some pancit for you!


About the Citi Test Kitchen:
As part of its commitment to supporting the growth of small local businesses, Citi launched the Citi Test Kitchen to help up-and-coming chefs connect with customers without having to raise startup capital, accrue a solid customer base and lock down a prime location. By lessening the barrier to entry for these culinary entrepreneurs, Citi and Urbanspace are also providing NY market customers with what they crave most: the newest ingredients, the most exotic flavors and exciting taste combinations.