Thursday, October 13, 2022

Nomad is closed for now on 2nd Avenue while owner takes a 'much-needed break'

Photo by Kevin Frech

Nomad, the low-key Mediterranean and North African restaurant at 78 Second Ave., has gone dark in recent days. Someone has removed the sign and paper covers the windows here between Fourth Street and Fifth Street. 

The restaurant's website now notes that it has closed "until further notice." 

Owner Mehenni Zebentout shed some light on the situation in an Instagram post from Monday: 
A heartfelt thank you to everyone who has raised a glass and joined me for a meal — either at Cucina Di Pesce, Belcourt or Nomad…or all three! You became part of my family, and you helped me realize my dream of bringing the food and culture of my country to live here in NYC. 

After 33 years in this industry, I am taking a much-needed break to visit my family, regroup and plan my next chapter. This is not goodbye; more like stay tuned for what's next. As David Bowie once said, "I don't know where I'm going from here, but I promise it won't be boring."
I look forward to sharing my next adventure(s) with you soon.

In June 2020, writer Richard Morgan had this to say about the place: "Nomad radiates a defiant truth: It is the coolest, tastiest, truest restaurant that New York's galloping gourmands have no interest in letting anyone know about (if they themselves even know about it at all)."

Nomad first opened in 2006. 


Anonymous said...

understood, but i will miss this place :(

Anonymous said...

That break was needed a long time ago already, as the place, and especially its service, had deteriorated immensely since its wonderful glory days.

OlympiasEpiriot said...

I hope he has a great break. I haven't been getting out to eat often these days (for obvious reasons) but, I was definitely worried when I saw Nomad dark.

Anonymous said...

Nomad no more

This is a rant
Of a world laid to rest
A cultural hub
That was one of the best!
Inside was pure art
In every detail
An oasis of love
On which I set sail ~
I met my wife here
Perhaps it was fate
We both worked to make it
A place ultimate…
She was ‘The Best Server’
As well as the First
I ate as payment
Most everyday with a thirst
For great food and drink
And that good looking crew
With magical meals
The next thing I knew
I walked down the isle
With Carol Marie
As we had begun
Our small family
Mehenni had catered
And man was it grand
He knew how to party
Great food made by hand
But Uncle Mehenni
Was always on point
Feeding his people
In this North African Joint
Lamb Tagine, Cous Cous Royale
Harrisa flavors from exotic locale
Chicken Briwats and Haloumi Cheese
And let’s not forget
Salima’s famous cookies!
Seventeen years
He served this town well
Hosting events
Too many to tell
Musicians and Dancers
Shaking their hips
Singers and poets
All with pursed lips
Nomad was a place
With happy good vibes
An East Village gem
Home to it’s valuable tribes
It will surely be missed
By me and many
We’re grateful for the time
Long live Mehenni!

Steel Neal

Bert S said...

Steel Neal said it best in his comment. The place had it all from the superlative decor to the superlative food. The spices were so sophisticated and so straight from North Africa. Let's hope Mahani launches another venture and does so soon. Too soon won't be soon enough.

Bert S