When thinking of Jerusalem, its holy sites and rich history immediately come to mind. Did you also consider the vibrant food scene bursting with delicious tastes and flavors? Due to Jerusalem’s mixture of cultures, restaurants have popped up all throughout the city ranging from cheap eats to fine dining. Follow our culinary journey as we break down the best places to try in Jerusalem so your next visit will be filled with unique dishes and experiences!
Start at the shuk for high-end cuisine: Machneyuda
10 Beit Ya’akov
This meat-centric restaurant is the brain-child of friends Uri Navon, Assaf Granite, Yossi Elad. The vibe is modern with an open kitchen and interactive, funny bartenders pouring drinks and entertaining diners. The energy is high throughout the Machneyuda, with music turned up loud in a party- like atmosphere, full of dancing and singing. In addition to an exciting ambience, the food is top-par and there is a highly-recommended chef’s tasting menu which costs around 300 shekels. To secure a spot, make sure you reserve in advance since the restaurant is quite busy and table space becomes rare.
For a quick lunch bite, hummus is a necessity: Hummus Ben Sira
3 Ben Sira
This restaurant’s name says it all - hummus is all you need to know and what must be ordered at Hummus Ben Sira. Enjoy their creamy, fresh hummus dishes inside or by taking in the views of Jerusalem while dining at their outdoor tables. A typical order includes two pitas, a large bowl of hummus, some raw vegetables (such as: onion, pickles and tomato) and three falafel patties. It is recommended to order mushrooms on top of the hummus for a true Ben Sira experience. Their pita is fluffy and tastes fresh out of the oven, which is vital in a Middle Eastern establishment. Since Ben Sira is extremely popular among locals and tourists alike, there may be a line but it is overwhelmingly decided that this restaurant is worth any wait!
If you want a scenic meal, head to: Rooftop
11 King Solomon St., Mamilla Hotel
Another restaurant that exemplifies it’s name, Rooftop is situated on top of the Mamilla Hotel, overlooking Jerusalem’s Old City as well parts of modern Jerusalem. Rooftop is known for both it’s spectacular view as well as for it’s delectable wine. A sommelier is on staff who can help you pair the perfect wine with your meal so all flavors of the food will be experienced. Rooftop is open for both lunch and dinner and features large portions of dishes such as: fish, meat, cheese and steak. Diners rave about the desserts, with special regards to the lemon curd pie. This restaurant is also certified Kosher and serves cold dishes on the Sabbath.
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Looking for a low-key night? Grab a drink at: BeerBazaar
Rehov Ets Khayim 3, Mahane Yehuda
Located at the entrance of the Machane Yehuda market, BeerBazaar offers many beers both on tap and in bottles. The infusion of a bar plus a restaurant makes for a lively space with friendly service and an upbeat atmosphere. Although BeerBazaar is considered more of a place for drinks, their snacks are considered extremely tasty and it is worth trying the South African Biltong jerky. For a sweet craving, the chocolate brownie is served in individual pans. To try a sampling of the BeerBazaar’s best beers, order the the roulette which is their a low-cost beer flight.
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