Modern Israeli restaurant Golda will serve its last feast this month after a rocky first 18 months of business. (Joe Armao)

‘We did something special’: Modern Israeli Prahran restaurant Golda is closing

Prahran restaurant Golda has announced it is closing this month, drawing to an end a short but sweet chapter for fans of vibrant Middle Eastern cooking in Melbourne.

With their Commercial Road lease up for renewal, co-owners Adam Faigen and Rotem Papo had to make a call on committing to another five years on the restaurant. For Faigen, a hospitality entrepreneur with 20 years’ experience, the uncertainty for the industry while the pandemic continues to play out was too much.

“Golda is a solid business but in this climate there’s no certainty of revenue and income. My decision to shut is because I need to move into a new career,” he says.

Papo, Golda’s chef, agrees. “It was just really hard for us to trade consistently and put some financials behind us, and feel confident about where the business is going.”

Both partners said the business is solvent, but Faigen needs more income security than what restaurants can offer right now. He is leaving hospitality to pursue a career in real estate and property development.

The Israeli-born Papo would like Golda to continue, but is not in a financial position to back the business solo. He hopes to revive Golda with another partner if the right opportunity comes along.

Read the article by Emma Breheny in The Age.