By Scott Etkin and Lisa Kava
Kebab Aur Sharab, an Indian restaurant, is opening at 247 West 72nd Street on December 29th. The menu pays homage to the hometowns of its culinary director Dipesh Shinde, who has worked in some of the top restaurants in India, and chef Salil Mehta, who’s known for being the chef-owner of Laut, the first Michelin-starred restaurant for Malaysian cuisine, and Wau on the UWS. “When we were growing up in New Delhi, Punjabi families would come together to celebrate meals featuring kebabs and freshly baked roti and naan from the best street food vendors,” said Mehta. “Kebab aur Sharab is a reflection of that culture and spirit, where food is made with love and served family-style.” The signage on top of the restaurant that looks like the numbers “3112” is actually the Hindi spelling of “aur,” which means “infinity of hope.” The space used to house My Most Favorite Food, a kosher bakery, restaurant and caterer that closed in early 2022 after more than four decades on the UWS. (Thanks to Joy, Rachel and Sue for the tips.)
Rocket Club, a youth educational program for STEAM subjects, has extended its pop-up at Columbus between 81st and 82nd Streets through January. Over the past month, Rocket Club has filled up its membership spots for its “STEAM Academy” program and is now using the space to showcase its math tutoring program. At the pop-up, children ages 7 to 14 will get a sense of what membership in the program is like. In one hour at the pop-up, kids do several activities including: take a math diagnostic with a “Rocket Club Math Expert”; do a “career-discovery exercise” to see how math is used by engineers, astrophysicists and entrepreneurs; demo how math is used to build and code robotics; and try a math-focused virtual reality experience. Sign-up is available for a complimentary tour and math diagnostic at the link. There are 40 enrollment spots in the math program and spots in the STEAM Academy program will open up again in February.
7th Street Burger is coming to 424 Amsterdam between 80th and 81st Streets, the former location of Oaxaca Taqueria, which closed last month. 7th Street Burger serves “classic American smash-burgers for takeout and delivery,” including cheeseburgers and Impossible burgers. There are five other locations in Manhattan (the original one is on East 7th Street). “7th Street Burger has the best burgers in the city,” an enthusiastic UWS resident and burger fan said. (Thanks to Rachel for the tip.)
Ping Pod, a self-service place for playing table tennis, is planning to open on 99th Street between Broadway and West End in the summer of 2023. Ping Pod has several locations throughout the city, where players (adults and kids) can reserve open tables, a private room, or have coaching sessions. There are no attendants at the studios, so tables are available to book 24/7. It is replacing a Dry Bar salon. (Thanks to Meg for the tip.)
Broadway Nail, a nail salon, has replaced Carnegie Nails at 2811 Broadway between 108th and 109th Streets. (Thanks to Bonnie for the tip.)
Aesop, the Australian skincare company, has temporarily closed its store on the corner of 70th Street and Columbus for refurbishment. It’s expected to reopen on December 31st. The vintage sign for Anel French Cleaners that remains above Aesop is a holdover from the store that preceded it for more than 50 years and closed in 2016.