Visitors to the Eastside Beltline visitors can now get a taste of Israel at Atlanta spot Rina.
The restaurant, which opened today in the Ford Factory Lofts, comes from Tal Baum, whose Oliva Restaurants group includes Italian eatery Bellina Alimentari in Ponce City Market and recently-opened West Midtown spots Aziza and Falafel Nation.
The restaurant is named for Baum’s grandmother, who “instilled a passion for cooking in Baum,” according to a press release.
“I wanted to expose Atlanta to the fun, lively, delicious part of my culture that is not always the focal point. I want everybody to know what a magical and beautiful place Israel is and share the recipes that were first served at my family’s falafel stand in Israel in the 1950’s,” Baum said in a prepared statement. “It means so much to me to continue to expand the flavors of this city and be a part of this Atlanta’s tremendous restaurant scene.”
Executive chef Brandon Hughes, who oversees culinary operations all of Oliva Restaurants, was inspired by traditional skewer houses (or shipudiya) when developing the menu for Rina. Look for classic Middle Eastern dishes such as pita sandwiches, skewers, seasonal mezze, hummus, salads and Israeli-inspired milkshakes.
“After 6 months at the helm of Aziza, Israeli culture and cuisine continues to excite and inspire me. I can’t wait to share this concept with Atlantans,” said Hughes in a statement. “This concept takes more traditional Israeli food offerings, and brings things up a notch, adding in an element of fun and color.”
On the beverage side, offerings will include frozen drinks, draft cocktails, boozy milkshakes, and house-made sodas from Demario Wallace, who also oversees the bar program at Aziza and Rina. Several cocktails will be made with Middle Eastern ingredients such as harissa, tahini, turmeric and tamarind.
The 2,700 square-foot space was designed by Atlanta-based designer Smith Hanes and features an outdoor patio with Beltline access and traditional Israeli textures.
In addition to Rina, Vietnamese street food spot Lady Ha will open in the Ford Factory Lofts next year.
This week, Rina’s hours will be 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Monday-Thursday; 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Friday; 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Saturday; and noon-8 p.m. Sunday.
After this week, the restaurant will stay open until 9 p.m. Monday-Thursday.
699 Ponce de Leon Ave. NE, Atlanta. 404-343-0362, rinakitchen.com/
Scroll down to see the menu for Rina
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