It's pronounced ee-mah, means "Mom," and is named for the owner's Kurdish-Jewish mother, who inspired many of the excellent traditional Middle Eastern offerings. At the end of Agrippas Street, in walking distance from Machaneh Yehuda, the restaurant has a more diverse clientele than the fast-food places up the street—you'll rub shoulders with diplomats, lawyers, and politicians. The century-old stone house, with its arched doorways and niched windows, create different-size dining areas that bestow a feeling of intimacy. Avoid the glassed-in terrace during the summer. The modest array of salads includes hummus and baba ghanoush, as well as stuffed grape leaves and the wonderful kibbeh (seasoned ground meat deep-fried in a jacket of bulgur wheat). A selection of stuffed vegetables is an excellent choice if you're sharing. The tangy kibbeh soup full of dumplings is almost a meal in itself. Entrées are often accompanied by majadra (rice and lentils).
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