Ibby’s Falafel – Doomed in Hoboken

Ibby’s Falafel barely lasts a year in Hoboken, NJ

Looks like Hoboken’s love affair with Falafel is showing signs of fatigue. A few days ago, Ibby’s Falafel at 614 Washington Street called it quits. The reason for their demise could be one or more of the following:

  • Exorbitant rent
  • That location is cursed
  • Falafel sandwiches not really low carb enough (pushing almost 100g per sandwich)
  • Other places (like Maoz) are that much better

Perhaps it’s even the block they’re on – because Hummus Bar a few doors down also seems to be suffering a bit these days as well.

Why do you think they crashed?

Falafel overload in Hoboken: Ibby’s Falafel coming

3/20/2011:

For the longest time – Hoboken had Ali Baba and The Pita Grill. Then came along the Two Pitas in a Pod Lunch Truck. (We also had the Kebab “Pimp” House for a little while, before the owner got busted for his prostitution ring.)

But that sounds like a fine selection of healthy Mediterranean places for a Mile Square, right?

In less than six months – the Hummus Bar, Maoz Vegetarian, the Hoboken Cottage (which now serves Turkish Cuisine) Mamoun’s (coming soon), and now Ibby’s Falafel also set to open up shop at 614 Washington Street (f.k.a. Dino Sandwich Cafe).

Do you think this is Falafel overload? Or just way overdue?

For me – I’m sticking with Two Pitas (see review). Still the best in my opinion!

Description: Mediterranean / Middle-Eastern Cuisine. Stuff like Falafel, Hummus, Baba Ghanoush, Tabouli Salad, etc., et. al, yadda yadda yadda.
Address: 614 Washington Street
Web: www.ibbysfalafel.com
Phone: TBD

16 Responses

  1. iforgotmymantra says:

    Another falafel joint? Well, I wish them luck but it’s going to be hard with all the recent competition. Then to make the situation even less promising, we know from Dino’s experiences that a place needs to be very busy to cover the rent. I only want falafel, eh, maybe 1-2 times a year – so hopefully others out there crave it more.

    • tgoose says:

      Ibbys is so great in JC, that when they posted a Hoboken uprising, everyone was excited. They were renovating forever. In the time it took to get running, Mamouns posted a we are coming sign, and opened up before Ibbys. Atleast 2 months before. They lost 2 months of that loyalty. Mamouns has a massive following from NYC location, hard to beat that. Ibbys JC following is not as big. Also, Mamouns had Ibbys beat on falafel sandwich by $0.50 i think. Times are tough.

      Ali Baba is the best. But just not as short order as Mamouns…think we are talking different markets altogether[quote comment=”204690″]Another falafel joint? Well, I wish them luck but it’s going to be hard with all the recent competition. Then to make the situation even less promising, we know from Dino’s experiences that a place needs to be very busy to cover the rent. I only want falafel, eh, maybe 1-2 times a year – so hopefully others out there crave it more.[/quote]

  2. trueqwest says:

    This falafel war is interesting. I remember the first time I went to Ibby’s on Grove Street, reading an article on the wall about how Ibby is Mamoun’s nephew. Was there a family falling out, or is this a case of “Come on in, the water’s fine” between the restaurants?

  3. hobores says:

    Ibby’s is great stuff! we go there quite often. This will save us the trip.

    looks like the middle east falafel wars are heating up in Hoboken.

    Falafels….Not Oil!!! :)

  4. trueblue11 says:

    Mahmouns and Ibbys ARE related , I agree that something, or some kind of falling out, must be the case. In any case, Hoboken is the BIG winner. These 2 places are awesome. in NYC, the lines run down McDougal St. for Mahmouns. Ibby’s in J.C. is incredible as well, the shawarma is AMAZING. My prediction, Hummus bar, Maoz, et al, will all close. They all may be located on Washington street, but they’re not even CLOSE to being in the league of an Ibbys or Mahmouns.

  5. brklyn812 says:

    I agree with trueblue11. Even though Mamoun’s and Ibby’s are last to the party, they’ll outlast the others. Funny thing how Ibby’s has been in Jersey City for well over decade and as soon as his uncle (Mamoun’s) announces they are crossing the river to Hoboken, Ibby’s need to find space in town as well. I started going to Ibby’s when it opened. At the time, I lived in Hoboken but worked at Grove St. I kept telling him “you need to open in Hoboken”. Finally, the day has come.

  6. Stinkin says:

    Ali Baba’s reigns supreme over all the middle-eastern spots. Maybe the best food in all Hoboken.

  7. dirtyjerseyhobo says:

    Got to agree with you, blue. Ibby’s is absolutely fantastic. They deliver to our office in JC and we get them a couple times a month. Shwarma, kefka, and falafel/hummus sandwiches and they have some of the spiciest hot sauce Ive ever had at a middle Eastern restaurant.

  8. TrustThis says:

    Mamouns is the original. In Nyc for 40 years. Mamoun gave jobs to nephews and cousins who learned the family business. These cousins left to start their own (extremely similar) falafel shop called Ibby’s.

    None of the others will last. These two shops will. Expect a Pat’s vs Geno’s type rivalry to drive interest in both Mamouns and Ibbys Hoboken locations.

    PS: nice knowing you Maoz.

    • HobokenMich says:

      Ibby’s has a place in Freehold NJ and is amazing! I wish I knew all along that they had a place up here in JC but I am so excited they are coming to Hoboken. I remember last fall when I was saying there is no falafel (eh, good falafel) in Hoboken and that I just wish Ibby’s would move up here. 😆 [quote comment=”205569″]Mamouns is the original. In Nyc for 40 years. Mamoun gave jobs to nephews and cousins who learned the family business. These cousins left to start their own (extremely similar) falafel shop called Ibby’s. None of the others will last. These two shops will. Expect a Pat’s vs Geno’s type rivalry to drive interest in both Mamouns and Ibbys Hoboken locations. PS: nice knowing you Maoz.[/quote]

      • spgdental@gmail.com says:

        SORRY… BUT I ATE AT MAMOUNS AND NOT ONLY MY FOOD WAS COLD AFTER I WAITED ALMOST 40 MINUTES FOR IT… MY CHICKEN WAS BEYOND DRY.. WENT THERE ONCE AND NEVER AGAIN…

        NOW IBBY’S IS A DIFFERENT STORY, MY EXPERIENCE WAS GREAT FROM DAY ONE.. THEY WERE VERY NICE AND POLITE AND THE CHICKEN IS VERY TENDER AND MOIST.. I’M A VERY PICKY EATER AND I JUST LOVED THEIR FOOD.. BEEN THERE A FEW TIMES ALREADY AND MY HUSBAND AND I WILL DEF GO BACK SOON..[quote comment=”206304″]Ibby’s has a place in Freehold NJ and is amazing! I wish I knew all along that they had a place up here in JC but I am so excited they are coming to Hoboken. I remember last fall when I was saying there is no falafel (eh, good falafel) in Hoboken and that I just wish Ibby’s would move up here. [/quote]

  9. foodcritic411 says:

    I absolutely love Ibby’s Falafel. So happy they finally came into Hoboken. I’m a current a resident here in Hobo and made the trip over to Ibby’s (jc) just for a falafel. The food is Definitely Genuine. The atmosphere is Hoboken is very Welcoming especially being greeted by very good looking men 😉 love the Chicken Kabobs always very MOIST…. The Hummus is on point and the Desserts are to die for.

    “brklyn812- Mamouns should’ve stayed across the river where they belong with a population of over 8 million. It makes you think “TrustThis” the true definition of Greed (is an excessive desire to possess wealth or goods with the intention to keep it for one’s self. Greed is inappropriate expectation.)

  10. klaatu says:

    Mamoun’s doomed Ibby’s. They opened first and were less expensive. If Ibby’s had opened first I would have tried them out, but by them being more expensive than Mamoun’s, there was no reason to give them a try.

  11. nbm3 says:

    Too many restaurants in hoboken all fighting for the same clientelle, and when you take it to a specialty food such as falafel, how many you think will make it. Although i doubt Mamouns is making a killing maybe the are just weathering the storm a little better to snuff out the competition Ibbys. They both have decent sandwhiches, its probably just not enough room for all of them in Hoboken, now mamouns business should thrive.

  12. HomeTeam says:

    This place was plain awful. I was told by my JC friends how good it was, but after the second trip I scratched it off the list and stuck with Mamouns.

  13. Mitch Ultimato says:

    I liked Ibby’s more than Mamouns but the best falafel in town is still Ali Baba.

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