Photo by  V.W. Photography

What does it mean?

Sarap = delicious in Tagalog.

What’s your story?

If you really want to go back in the day, the origins of Sarap begins in a kitchen in Chicago, where Dorothy grew up. As a young’un, she was pressed into service as her mom filled orders for her famous lumpia shanghai and empanadas. Little did Dorothy know that she would put those skills to use in a pop-up restaurant concept many, many, MANY lumpias and years later. Mom still throws down in the kitchen, and Dorothy is still trying to figure out how to make her adobo taste exactly like hers (no luck so far). Fast forward to year 2014. Pop-up dinner events -- which are temporary restaurants that take over a space for a limited amount of time -- were gaining traction in the local dining scene, with a diverse array of cuisines. Jake and Dorothy thought it was about time to bring the people of Detroit a taste of their interpretation of Filipino food by holding their first pop-up dinner at Supino Pizzeria. They were floored and amazed at the outpouring of support, showing that there is a demand for Filipino food in Detroit.

Who are you?
Sarap is a pop-up restaurant concept that serves Filipino-inspired, from scratch, farm-to-table fare in southeast Michigan at pop-up dinner events in metro Detroit. We also cater private events such as birthday parties, weddings, etc. We're adding our own creativity and spin to the childhood favorites of Dorothy while staying true to the culture. We hope that by exploring Filipino food through our dinners and events, we can bring this underrated cuisine to a wider audience. Sarap is dedicated to the vision of a healthy, sustainable food system and aims to be a collaborative, active member of the broader food movement in Detroit by using as much local and seasonal ingredients as possible in its inspired interpretations; you can check out a list of some of the producers and farmers we work with here. By day (and sometimes night), Dorothy is a journalist and Jake is a chef.

What the heck is a pop-up?

Basically a pop-up is just that — someone pops up in a space that isn't theirs thanks to generosity and hospitality of the business. The pop-up restaurateurs bring in everything except the kitchen sink (and sometimes that too), including food, dish ware, and anything they'll need to take over the space. There are a lot of different opportunities in Detroit for people like us to introduce our concept to the public. The space can be a restaurant, a store, someone's house ... there are really no spaces that are off-limits. Except a Port-a-Potty. Ewww.

Do you cater?

We sure do. Send us an email at and let us know the details of your event so we can build a custom menu for your wedding, birthday party, dinner party, etc. 

Why Filipino food?

It’s an underappreciated cuisine so our mission at Sarap is to introduce this cuisine to the Detroit area, which unfortunately does not have enough Filipino restaurants. Also, the pop-up environment in Detroit makes it possible for people with food dreams like us to test our concepts.

We don’t aim to replace your mom’s cooking, because face it — you’re biased. That’s OK (by the way, my mom makes the best palabok). We just want to reimagine and reinterpret some of those beloved flavors and create something that’s sarap/delicious.

Where can I stuff my face with Filipino food?
Wherever we are popping up! Check out the events page here for the latest updates on where you can find us. We hope to see you soon!

I made a reservation online and want my money back. How do I get a refund?

We're sorry you won't be able to dine with us (was it something we said?). Email us at sarapdetroit [at] gmail [dot] com 48 HOURS PRIOR TO THE EVENT and we can give you a full refund. Cancellations after this time period are nonrefundable. Cancellations made within the designated parameters will receive a full refund. Refunds will take 5-7 business days to process. 

What's a pop-up again?

OK, here are some examples of pop-ups/places that have pop-ups. This is one of the OGs of pop-ups in Detroit's dining scene. This Corktown restaurant specializes in breakfast, brunch and lunch, but is closed in the evenings when they allow all kinds of different pop-ups, from African to sushi to Filipino (we have been there several times) take over their restaurant. This awesome brewery, where we've done a few pop-ups, doesn't have a full kitchen so they graciously host different pop-up chefs to serve food several times a week. Basically a pop-up is when a chef temporarily takes over someone else's space.

What is the meaning of life?