Openings & Closings: Leyla, Arba, Elysian Fields, Island Burgers

A new Turkish restaurant called Leyla plans to open at 108 West 74th Street near Columbus Avenue on March 6. “Conceptualized by Huseyin Ozer [of Bodrum] and his business partner Berna Erbilgin Gundogdu, LEYLA brings a piece of the duo’s home to New Yorkers,” a press release says. They plan to serve Turkish and Mediterranean dishes” including breads, salads and meat — lamb and braised beef tongue are each on the menu. There will be a bar, a main dining room and a garden room dining area.

Arba, a restaurant on Columbus and 83rd Street we wrote about a few weeks ago, is actually co-located at the new gluten-free kosher bakery Modern Bread and Bagel, The Times of Israel notes. “Both Gottesman and Zook see the restaurant as being a space where diners come to relax. In the morning customers can choose from babka bread pudding, lemon ricotta hotcakes, a bagel with in-house smoked salmon — or perhaps order a sandwich to go. In the evening diners can enjoy one of 200 kosher wines, 20 of which will be available by the glass. They can order a la carte from Arba’s menu, or enjoy a six-course tasting menu featuring locally sourced vegetables and fish.

A Mediterranean restaurant called Elysian Fields opened on Amsterdam between 119th and 120th in January.”They are doing everything right — great, reasonably priced Greek food in an attractive, comfortable space with good lighting, great music, and sweet service,” writes our tipster Nancy. “A meal at Elysian Fields will run you upwards of $25, drinks not included,” the Columbia Spectator reported. Mezedes, or small plates, vary in price from about $5-$16, and some large plates, like the Seafood Pasta, go for $23. The portions are generous, but be warned that a $12 salad from the menu will not fill you up.”

Island Burgers & Shakes at 422 Amsterdam appeared to be closed as of a few days ago, with a “business opportunity available” sign on the window. No one has been picking up the phone and the owner did not respond to an email message. Thanks to Gavan for the photo.

FOOD, NEWS, OPEN/CLOSED | 19 comments | permalink
    1. Juan says:

      I’m glad that Big Daddy’s, one of the few truly family friendly restaurants in the neighborhood, is changing to a Mediterranean restaurant. There clearly are none of those in the neighborhood…

      • Beverly says:

        Ha! What’s with all these new Mediterranean spots?

      • Stuart says:

        I am truly sad that Big Daddy’s is changing to a Mediterranean restaurant. If parents planning a kid’s birthday party had a choice of serving Mediterranean food, or burgers and shakes, I think they’d choose the latter, because it’s what kids prefer. I know my kids would prefer it. We were there on Saturday afternoon, and there was a small birthday celebration at the next table. It would be inconvenient to travel to Big Daddy’s other location near Gramercy Park. Hopefully, they won’t be changing their cuisine…

      • Mark Moore says:

        “Mediterranean” is not just perceived as trendy and healthy, but it equals low food costs and high alcohol sales.

    2. Ken LeClair says:

      Any news on why Westend Hall closed?

      • scott says:

        Has it closed? didnt’t hear that

      • Izzy says:

        west end hall closed??!! I don’t understand why restaurants and bars can’t stay open on that block. That place and Macchina were both great spaces and there is lots of foot traffic, especially now with Mama Too’s becoming the toast of the town. I hope some good places come and take their spots!

      • Scott Schaffer says:

        Did West End Hall really close?

    3. Food Gimp says:

      Modern Bread’s bagel and schmear was such a good treat for me. I got diagnosed as wheat intolerant a couple of years ago and losing bagels was a bummer. That said, $15 for a bagel, lox, and some cream cheese felt like this will be a biiiiiig treat. I know that the lox are done in house and that the bagels are special ingredients etc., but being sick is hard enough without the implicit food tax. 😲

    4. Daryl says:

      WOW .. Island Burgers gone i am sad

    5. BMAC says:


    6. Nick says:

      Who has the best General Tso’s chicken in the Upper West Side? Been getting a lot a fake stuff from places around my apartment.

    7. Peter Meyer says:

      Just passed by West End Hall on 106th st and Bway and it is closed with everything inside in an upheaval.