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214 Mulberry St. New York, NY 10012 | Nolita | 212-966-7366

Location Description:

Mulberry Street was once a Little Italy stronghold, but Soho has swallowed all but a couple of blocks of that now-touristy enclave, and new restaurants from other parts of the globe have usurped territory. One of those celebrates a different — and less ubiquitous, at least in New York — Mediterranean region: Balaboosta pays homage to husband-and-wife owners Stefan Nafziger and Einat Admony’s native Israel, building on the success of their tiny West Village falafel shop, Taïm. Admony maintains a bright menu of staples — fried olives with labne and harissa oil, crispy cauliflower with pine nuts and currants — as well as a daily list of specials, noted on a chalkboard and worth perusing for treats like lamb loin braised until it submits, quivering, to the touch of a fork. Her food is soulful: This is a dinner you want to eat with a celebratory red wine (which you can do without breaking the bank). Balaboosta is Yiddish for “the perfect housewife,” and the restaurant is so named for its aspiration to do it all and do it well. That spirit is perhaps most evident at Passover, when Admony collaborates with fellow chefs to prepare a Seder, connecting more deeply with a neighborhood that has already embraced its non-Italian neighbor.

Related Stories (6)


  • Cuisine(s): Asian, Dessert, Dim Sum, International, Vegetarian
  • Hours: Sun, Sat 11am-3:30pm, Sun 5:30pm-10pm, Mon-Thu 5:30pm-11pm, Tue-Fri 11:30am-3:30pm, Fri-Sat 5:30pm-11:30pm
  • Price: $$$
  • Serving: Brunch, Dinner, Lunch
  • Alcohol: Full bar
  • Reservations: Accepted, Not Accepted
  • Parking: No Parking
  • Payment Types: All Major Credit Cards
  • Features: Takeout

Related Stories

  • Fork in the Road: Eating
    Passover began last night, and if you've ignored the holiday until now, there's still plenty of time for redemption; lucky for all of us, this city is filled with great Passover options for...
  • Fork in the Road: Interviews
    When Einat Admony and her husband Stefan Nafziger first opened the doors to their West Village falafel shop, Taïm (222 Waverly Place, 212-691-1287), in 2007, Admony didn't feel proud. "I was...
  • Fork in the Road: Lists
    2013 will go in the culinary books as the year of the Cronut, of Isaan fare, of dialed up Asian flavors, of one-item fast casual restaurant concepts, and of a return to vegetables -- the...
  • Fork in the Road: Food News
    Harold Dieterle has a schnitzel at The Marrow... Among Manhattan restaurants, at least, schnitzels are on the upswing. While you may think that the pounded-thin, breaded-and-fried cutlets...
  • Fork in the Road: Where Am I Eating?
    These off-the-menu (but on almost every table) yucca chips are deep-fried and dusted with paprika and salt before being served at Nolita favorite, Balaboosta. Served alongside the...
  • Dining: Reviews
    Until recently, dining on Mulberry Street meant suffering through bland penne alla vodka or lackluster veal Marsala. But then quietly over the past year, the stretch of pavement between...

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