Chef Einat Admony’s Balaboosta makes its anticipated return to NYC dining today, opening in the former space of Admony’s Bar Bolonat. Originally open in Nolita, the Middle Eastern pioneer is now in the West Village at 611 Hudson St., at West 12th Street.
The original Balaboosta served dishes that spanned the Mediterranean and Middle East like shakshuka and Moroccan fish cazuela. Admony will continue to serve her inventive takes on food from that region, including a new dish that’s a play on soup dumplings, made with Yemenite soup. Chicken fesenjan, a Persian stew of chicken and pomegranate, will also be on the menu, alongside an Israeli wine list and full bar.
For the Balaboosta reboot, architect Silvia Zofio — who designed the original restaurant — revamped the Bar Bolonat space to create a bright, Mediterranean-inspired design. The space includes a 24-seat private dining room.
Admony and her husband-business partner Stefan Nafziger announced the closure of the original Nolita Balaboosta in the spring, citing an increase in operational costs and recent changes in the neighborhood as the causes. The restaurant opened in 2010 to immediate praise, including a two-star review in New York magazine and a one-star from the Times. In 2013, Admony published a cookbook of the same name with recipes from her repertoire.
Admony is a large part of the Middle Eastern dining scene in West Village. Not only is Balaboosta — her first full-service restaurant in NYC — now in the neighborhood, but it’s also the birthplace of her growing fast-casual falafel and pita joint Taïm. On top of that, she also recently opened Kish-Kash, a new couscous restaurant in the neighborhood.