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As New York returns to some level of normalcy after 24 months of COVID-19, the streets and avenues of Hell’s Kitchen are saying goodbye to some businesses and welcoming others to the neighborhood. Here’s a brief roundup of what’s coming to town and what’s departed!

OPENING

Welcome to Thonglor at 789 9th Avenue, which has taken the location occupied by Mi Nidito between W52nd/53rd Street on the west side. Thonglor “serve familiar, traditional, and unique Thai food with new, modern twists and recipes.”

Some of the dishes on offer at Thonglor.
Thonglor Thai restaurant on 9th Avenue. Photo: Phil O’Brien

A little further up the road at 813 9th Avenue, a new Indian restaurant has arrived this month, replacing Yuqi’s Thai Cuisine. Jaz — named after owner Jaz Rupall —will serve northern Indian cuisine. Rupall was born and raised as a second-generation British-Indian in England and always dreamed of opening her own restaurant. During the pandemic she created at-home cooking courses — which she intends to hold at the restaurant in the coming months. Jaz has hired Co-Executive Chefs Bachan Rawat (Bukhara Grill) to cook the restaurant’s curries and Arif Ahmed (Bombay Grill, Sapphire) to operate the tandoor oven at the new establishment.

Jaz Indian Restaurant on 9th Avenue. Photo: Phil O’Brien

CLOSING

Fans of Badshah are disappointed at the closure of the popular Indian restaurant on 9th Avenue — perhaps they will find solace at nearby Jaz. Owner Abhishek Sharma did not respond to a request for comment. During the pandemic, he generously offered the opportunity for the chefs of Mikey Pomodoro to run a lunchtime popup from the eatery. Sharma is the chef at another Indian restaurant on the Upper West Side — Swagat.

Badshah kept going through the early months of the pandemic with service out of their front window. Photo: Phil O’Brien

Over on 10th Avenue, the signs have gone from the front of 123 Burger Shot Beer. The bar was known for its famed combination of $1 burger, $2 shots and $3 beers. “123 Burger Shot Beer gives way to the new breed collegiate while paying homage to those who pine for the days of cheap beer and great burgers,” said owner John Greco III on their website. 123 Burger Shot Beer’s other location in Harlem at 125th Street remains open.

123 Burger Shot Beer still has its flags flying, but there are no other signs of life on 10th Avenue. Photo: Phil O’Brien

COMING SOON

We will be getting a new Brazilian restaurant at 688 10th Avenue in the coming months. Chef Carlos Inacio, who has been running Rice X Beans in Woodside (and up until the pandemic had an outpost on 9th Avenue), is coming back to Hell’s Kitchen. The restaurant will be called Rice X Beans and will take the place where Havana Social, Madrock and Lamano Tapas restaurant used to be between W48/49th Street.

Lamano Tapas Bar closed on 10th Avenue during the pandemic. Photo: Phil O’Brien

Just across the street at 691 10th Avenue is a new pizza joint getting ready to open. Called Royal Napoli Pizza, the new eatery is sandwiched between 5 Brothers Gourmet and Ñaño Ecuadorian Restaurant in a place that many locals will remember previously as Bab Marrakech.

Royal Napoli Pizza on 10th Avenue. Photo: Phil O’Brien

El Cartel is currently recruiting staff to open a new South American-inspired tapas bar at 613 9th Avenue. The location is in the former Lenwich space in between W43rd/44th Street. They are promising “an emphasis on Colombian flavors and small plates” including fresh octopus with paprika, mixed ceviche with shrimp and tilapia, and grilled chicken breast in a creamy mushroom sauce.

The interior of El Cartel on 9th Avenue. Photo: nycrestaurant.com

Join the Conversation

5 Comments

  1. There is still Gossip – the best. Happy to have Nelore Grill in place, also – great beef stew, fish chowder, desserts, (and music!). Missing Uncle Mario’s – that was good Italian; also Mont Blanc (an early casualty.) And what of Chez Napoleon? Mon Dieu!!?? C’est tragique!

  2. With a never ended supply of Thai food options on 9th Ave, Thonglor really stood out to us. They were so nice when we visited and the food had so much flavor. Great addition to 9th Ave.

  3. Seriously missing Uncle Marios :((
    When is the georgian place replacing uncle nick’s going to open? And does anybody have any information on PF Changs to go on 8th ave??

  4. There is no other restaurant I miss more than Uncle Nick’s! It was the BEST in out neighborhood!!!!!! The food was incredibly fresh, the staff was wonderful and the owners were the kindest in the hood!!!!!! Nothing will ever come close to Uncle Nick’s!!!!!!!

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