After the planned March opening was delayed due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, chef Kameel Srouji finally opens the second location of his popular downtown Atlanta Mediterranean food stall. Aviva by Kameel opens Friday, June 26, at the Collective food hall on the ground floor of the Coda complex in Midtown’s Tech Square.
A grand opening celebration takes place outdoors in the plaza on Friday evening, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. The socially distanced soiree includes a few of Aviva’s most popular dishes like its falafel, chicken shawarma, baba ghanoush, Nazareth salad, and baklava. Srouji asks that people attending Friday’s grand opening make a donation to the Atlanta Community Food Bank or the Yemen Foundation or purchase a gift card.
Srouji, who hails from Nazareth, Israel, opened Aviva by Kameel in 2012 at the food court inside Peachtree Center mall. The congenial chef is known for his warm smile and engaging his customers, asking if they’re happy and telling them “I love you.” The downtown location reopened for takeout in May, adding online ordering, contactless pickup, and delivery to the mix, and even opening on Saturdays. Takeout and contactless pickup are also available at the Midtown stall.
Aviva by Kameel joins chef Hector Santiago’s El Burro Pollo burrito stand and ceviche bar, which opened in early March prior to the statewide dining room shutdowns. The 25,000-square-foot “chef-driven” food hall flanking the Crum and Forster building at Coda, also includes additional locations of Seven Chan and Ken Yu’s prolific sushi and poke bowl restaurant Poke Burri and Wildleaf salad.
Burger and sandwich shop SmoQue Burger, a second location of Buford Highway Malaysian restaurant Mamak, and a bar called By Weight and Measure, owned by Johnny Martinez and Brandon Ley (Joytstick Gamebar, Georgia Beer Garden) and Ian Carlson, plan to open at the Collective later this fall.
Seating at the Collective is communal, with most stalls operating as full-service restaurants.