Skip To Content

Support the Forward

Funded by readers like you DonateSubscribe

Is The Hummus Bubble About To Burst?

New York has long been fascinated with the mashed chickpea dip, reminiscent of the Middle Eastern table, with all the disagreements about who gets to sit at it. But is this fascination dissipating?

Recent hummus-related closures include Dizengoff, celebrity chef Michael Solomonov’s short-lived Chelsea Market venture, Gourmet Food Solutions, the maker of Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods staples, and Hoomoos Asli, gone kaput after eighteen years of making New Yorkers pronounce hummus the correct way. There was Hummus Place, once a hummus-selling behemoth, now relegated to a single, minimalist Upper West Side eatery. And on 14th Street, Mimi’s Hummus didn’t make it to 2019, not to mention the Hummus Brothers company, now suffering hummus-related financial problems.

Perhaps this turnover is simply a very New York case of out with the old, in with the new, as newcomers Vish, Mama Ghannouj and Mint Kitchen all vie for the fleeting attention of New York diners.

But perhaps something more insidious is at play: Has New York reached maximum hummus capacity?

There’s dessert hummus, which is trending, and perhaps the last gimmicky attempt at keeping hummus a household name. Because hummus is just a dip, and to expect it to shoulder the weight of Arab, Jewish and Middle Eastern identity, while remaining a party staple, seems absurd. Perhaps the time has come to allow some younger, fresher ingenues to take the stage.

If you like hummus, maybe you’ll like mujaddara. Maybe you’ll like sabich, or labneh, or fattoush.

Don’t know what they are? Google them.

Shira Feder is a writer. She’s at [email protected] and @shirafeder


Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.