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Za's Brick Oven Pizza, 2930 Devine Street: January 2015 (temporary)   no comments

Posted at 10:53 pm in closing

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I've always liked Za's, though I go there less since they stopped being open to 11:00 on Thursadys. The only things I would change would be to make the individual pizzas a little larger, and to brew stronger tea. I suspect, however, that more than that is slated to change as the place is now closed for revamping as The New Za's. Commenter David suggests that it will then be under the same ownership as Cantina 76, a place I have somehow never gotten around to.

(Hat tip to commenter Dennis)

Written by ted on January 18th, 2015

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Momo's Bistro, 2930 Devine Street: Late May 2014 (closed again)   4 comments

Posted at 11:57 pm in Uncategorized

I was at Za's and noticed that Momo's Bistro in the same strip was dark, so I went over to take a look and snap a few pictures (the flash worked better than I expected). After that, and a bit of googling around, I'm not entirely sure of the status of this place.

The sign on the door suggests that they will "hopefully" be back at the start of August while the message on their answering machine says the end of August while their facebook pagedoesn't commit them to anything specific. On the other hand, this site (which I would expect to be pretty careful about what goes out under their logo) seems to imply that they are gone for good.

I would say that the phone still being connected and the website still being up are good signs, but it sounds very iffy at best.

UPDATE 16 November 2009: Open again!

UPDATE 27 May 2014 -- Momo's is closed again, this time for good. According to The State, an Eggs Up Grill will be opening there soon. Eggs Up started in Litchfield Beach in the same building as Latte Litchfield (and they originally shared ownership). Currently their flagship store has moved to the old Piggly Wiggly shopping center a bit north on US-17 and they have several other coastal locations for the breakfast and lunch concept.

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Written by ted on July 23rd, 2009

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Al-Amir, 2930 Devine Street: 23 December 2007 (name change Sept 2012)   14 comments

Posted at 8:38 pm in closing

To my mind, Al-Amir was the best Middle Eastern restaurant in Columbia. My favorites were the falaffel with fresh tabouli salad and the fresh seeded Damascus bread hot from the brick oven. The inside dining area was distinctive with its wraparound bench seating, strewn with pillows. My four year old neice loved how she could walk all the way around the table. It was like a little play-area with dining for her.

In mid-December, I noticed a banner outside noting that the restaurant would be closing on 23 Dec. I don't know what happened as they always seemed to be doing a good business to me. Perhaps they were over-extended. They had opened a satellite site on Clemson Road a few years back which didn't last long, and had recently (I believe) opened a location on St. Andrews Road. That location will continue. If I had to speculate, I would guess that the site rent is lower there.

The Mediterranean Tea Room remains an option for Middle Eastern food on Devine Street, but I find its hours to be really odd.

UPDATE 3 July 2008:

The new restaurant in the Al-Amir space, Saffron is open and has been for some weeks now. The Free Times is ambivalent.

UPDATE 12 April 2010: Added full street address to post title.

UPDATE 19 September 2011 -- Well, after the failure of Tabouli (which followed Saffron), Al-Amir is coming back. Did not see that one coming! Hat tip to my sister:

UPDATE 23 October 2012: Well, it is getting kind of complicated keeping track of the history of this building. First it was Al-Amir, then that closed (which was when I first made this post, the first ever closing on Columbia Closings!), then it was Saffron, then it was Tabouli, then it was Al-Amir again, and *now* it is Arabesque Mediterranean Cusine.

In this case, I think it is simply a name change. The phone number remains the same, as does the staff (who are still stumbling over the new name). I suspect this latest sobriquet can be explained by the yellow ABL Notice in the window. It's always been pretty clear that the Al-Amir restaurants would not serve alcohol.

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Written by ted on December 30th, 2007

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