Chef Michael Solomonov has brought great buzz to several restaurant locations in Philadelphia. With his latest entry, steeped in the milk and honey and hummus and lamb of his native Israel—as well as the cultures that have left a mark on that Promised Land—he's done it again. Taking advantage of its dramatic perch above one of the city's oldest streets, the stripped-down Zahav relies on architectural features such as picture windows and soaring ceilings to create spectacle.
The open kitchen, on view behind leaded glass, is the true stage. There, a small staff mixes and matches a melting pot of flavors for a modern Israeli menu whose highlights include house-baked laffa (flatbread), kebabs of impossibly tender chicken cooked over hot coals and served with sumac onions and Israeli couscous, and addictive florets of fried cauliflower served with a lemon- and dill-spiked lebneh (yogurt cheese). Cap off your meal with truly innovative cocktails and desserts like pistachio baklava.