Manhattan is finally getting a taste of the Philippines’ favorite fast-food chain. Although it was originally supposed to open back in the fall of 2016, Jollibee’s very first location in the Big Apple's most densely populated borough will belatedly come to fruition on October 27 at 609 8th Avenue between West 39th and West 40th streets, and fans should expect Black Friday-like lines.
This spring, Toronto Life reported on the opening of the first-ever location in Canada's largest metropolis. People lined up for 10 hours in the wind and rain in below-zero temperatures for Filipino-style Jolly Spaghetti, Fiesta Noodles, Burger Steak, Chicken Dippers and Mango Peach Pie. Similar long lines were seen at the launch of the first U.S. East Coast location in Queens in 2009, and the chain is anticipating the same for its Manhattan restaurant kickoff.
According to Business Insider, 61 percent of New York State’s Filipino population lives in New York City, which makes Manhattan prime real estate for Jollibee’s newest outpost. The brand — which is often referred to as “the McDonald’s of the Philippines” — is also using this as an opportunity to introduce its version of the cuisine to other demographics, including tourists.
Those patient enough to brave the crowds on opening day have the chance of winning Jollibee swag. The first 40 customers in line will be given a year’s supply of Chickenjoy, Jollibee’s iconic fried chicken, and others will receive exclusive Jollibee Funko Pop! figures and other branded collectibles. Not in New York City? Put the Yum Burger on standby and chomp down on the best burger in your state instead.