Former Babalu space to be replaced by new Asian restaurant in Lakeview

new Asian restaurant coming to lakeview
UMAMI, a new sushi and Thai restaurant, will occupy the space previously housed by Babalu. Photo via Jacob Blankenship for Bham Now

Lakeview has the drinks, the dancing and now the area will have a staple we’ve all been missing. The owners of Nori Thai and Sushi and Shiki are moving into the 29Seven mixed-use development with plans to open a new Asian restaurant, UMAMI.

Investing in Lakeview’s growth

new Asian restaurant coming to lakeview

The restauranteurs partnered with Retail Specialists’ Lyndsy Yim to find the ideal spot for UMAMI. Its new home is the former space of Babalu. The Mexican restaurant. which specialized in tapas and small plates, closed in March of this year.

While we were sad to wave goodbye, we can’t help but be excited to hear the news something delicious is filling the space (and our stomachs).

“The Lakeview area has been missing an Asian concept and UMAMI fits perfect into our overall strategy to bring unique concepts to the development.”

Mead Silsbee III, CFO, Retail Specialists

The joint Thai and sushi restaurant is set to be a hit and we’re already texting the group chat for dinner plans. Have you eaten at Nori or Shikki before? I think it’s safe to say we can trust the talent from those kitchens will be carry over to Lakeview.

More to come

But, it’s just the beginning for what Retail Specialists, the local real estate firm who owns the property, envisions for the growing neighborhood. The team recognizes Lakeview as a unique part of Birmingham that welcomes families and young professionals alike. So, their focus aims to cater to both sets of people.

“Our focus is on bringing concepts that will bring consumers to 29-7 during the day and after work during the week—we want it to be a destination seven days a week

Lakeview is in such a great part of Birmingham positioned closed to Avondale and Downtown. It’s perfect for families during the day to have lunch, but poised for happy hours and nightlife as well for young professionals.”

What else is happening in Lakeview? 🙌

Lakeview has been on a roll lately and it doesn’t seem like that’s going to stop any time soon. The Purple Onion brought its Mediterranean eats to the area just this month. Also, Magic City Wellness moved into space previously occupied by Baptist Health Systems.

Not every addition has been accompanied by a roof and four walls. Crosstown scooters made Lakeview go mobile with its motorized scooters that are now available at Nail’s Convenience Store. 

In the meantime…. 🍽

Birmingham, NORI Thai and Sushi. new Asian restaurant
Something to hold you over until UMAMI opens in Lakeview. I can promise this sushi won’t disappoint. Photo via NORI Thai and Sushi

While we not-so-patiently wait for UMAMI to open, swing by Nori Thai and Sushi or Shiki for takeout or dine-in and get a preview of what we might see on the menu. If there’s one thing I’m sure can solve anything, it’s a bowl of Panang curry.

Are as pumped as we are, Birmingham? 🌟 Share your thoughts and what you hope to see on the menu with us on social @BhamNow on Facebook and Instagram, or @Now_Bham on Twitter.

Irene Richardson
Irene Richardson
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