Financial Woes

The Tangled, Troubled Web of Once-Promising Boston Restaurants

Photo: OM

Bad news for embattled Bombay Club and Masala Art restaurateur Vinod Kapoor: He’s bankrupt. According to a report in the Boston Business Journal, his Sai Restaurants Inc. owes $1.9 million to Needham Bank and $100,000 in state and federal taxes. Kapoor filed for bankruptcy yesterday. But he’s not alone in his misery. More ahead.

Foreshadowing problems to come, Kapoor shuttered his Bombay Club restaurant in the South End several weeks ago. It was part of a spate of high-profile closings in that neighborhood, which included other formerly heralded spots like Rocca and Ginger Park. Bombay Club seemed to be on solid enough ground; a few months before it closed, Herald critic Mat Schaffer praised the Club’s “fab fare.” It should be noted that Bombay Club took the place of Pho Republique, a popular Southeast Asian scene that was slated to reopen in a new location … and hasn’t.

Before its fateful South End move, Bombay Club was located in Harvard Square. But that stint didn’t go so well, either. And here the plot thickens further, so bear with us. Ex-Ginger Park chef Patricia Yeo is now cooking at OM. OM, meanwhile, was once named to Esquire’s list of “Top 25 Best New Restaurants.” (Not that we always trust what they have to say.) Anyway, a couple years after winning that honor, the buzzed-about spot filed for bankruptcy, too. OM’s landlord, Raj Dhanda, was also the Bombay Club’s landlord, and he’s the guy who evicted Kapoor from his original Cambridge digs for failure to pay rent.

One hopefully happy footnote to this saga: We’ve just gotten word that Maharaja Indian restaurant opens today at Bombay Club’s Cambridge address, 57 JFK Street. Here’s hoping they stick around!

Prominent Restaurateur Files for Ch. 11 [BBJ]

Related: In the South End, Does Restaurant Death Come in Threes?

The Tangled, Troubled Web of Once-Promising Boston Restaurants