Madiba Is Not Going to Close After All!

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In news cycles filled with downers and eccentricities, heart-wearmers are rare. But we’ve got one for you: Madiba, the seventeen-year-old Fort Greene South African-inspired restaurant, thoroughly adored by the community—and which ran an Indiegogo campaign late last November in an effort to stave off closure—will stay open.

Mark Henegan, Madiba’s owner and Chef, told Fort Greene Focus that after raising $20,000 and successfully renegotiating a lease with their landlord, the restaurant is once again in good financial shape, and its future looks brighter than ever.

Not only has the space been given cosmetic touchups with new paint and decorations, the restaurant—which has long doubled as a jovial community-gathering epicenter in the spirit of its namesake, Nelson Mandela—will also get a brand new rooftop garden. Furthermore, says Henegan, he will bring the restaurant off-site by hosting events in public spaces, like Parks.

Madiba is not only known and valued within Fort Greene and surrounding neighborhoods; the warm and welcoming restaurant that serves dishes from Africa and the mediterranean is known all the way on the other side of the Atlantic. Later this year, Nelson Mandela’s personal chef is set to stop in for a visit.

All of this is wonderful news indeed when, for some time, the neighborhood looked to be pricing out some of its most relied-upon restaurants and community hubs.

But now, Madiba anticipates a bright future. As Henegan told Fort Greene Focus, “We are looking forward to another 17 years.”


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