Jessi and Jennifer Singh opened their East Village contemporary Indian restaurant Babu Ji after departing Australia, where the restaurateurs had three businesses they've since closed, one of which was, according to an article in Eater NY, considered the best Indian restaurant in all of Melbourne. After conquering the dining public in New York, now the Singhs' have their sights set on San Francisco, where they'll open another Babu Ji, as Eater SF and others have announced.
In the fall, they'll be on Valencia Street, as Zagat San Francisco was the first to report in a tweet a few days ago. The spot: 280 Valencia, which we learned in March was for sale, with Nostra Spaghetteria departing. That restaurant was — and is, as it's not closed quite yet— a reboot of Plin from chef Alexander Alioto of the noted political and culinary Alioto family. The space, though it's been tweaked several times lately, has proved difficult for many establishments, with basically nothing lasting more than a few years. It was originally designed by Stanley Saitowitz and housed restaurants Conduit and Another Monkey before Plin.
Eater calls Babu Ji "Momofuku-like" to indicate a creative, even daring menu in a contemporary space. Meanwhile, SFist sister site Gothamist explains that Babu Ji gets its name from "the Hindi equivalent of what we'd call 'The Mayor of [insert street name]'" and that, in Alphabet City, it's been busy and convivial since it opened. As "the food is (mostly) outstanding," perhaps Babu Ji will live up to its name on its strip of northern Valencia.
And Dosa should be a little bit worried.