59 Best Restaurants in Jerusalem, Israel


$$$$ Fodor's choice

In an old stone house with a delightful back garden, 1868 is Jerusalem's most innovative, exacting kosher restaurant, on par with the city's best. Chef Yankele Turjeman combines the flavors of the city with high-quality ingredients and exquisite cooking techniques to create an unforgettable dining experience. Most of the fruits and vegetables are organic, and the menu changes monthly to incorporate the best of the season. If it's on the menu, don't miss the charcoal-grilled veal sweetbreads, served with steamed slices of baguette and pickled onion. The duck is spectacular, served with fruits of the season. The whiskey selection is endless, as is the list of local Israeli wines. Cocktails are beautifully balanced and are also served alongside tapas versions of the menu at Zuta, a jewel box of a cocktail bar at the back of the restaurant.

10 King David St., 9410122, Israel
Known For
  • modern Israeli cooking
  • seasonal ingredients
  • changing menu that may include duck or veal sweetbreads
Restaurants Details
Rate Includes: Closed Fri. No lunch Sat., Reservations essential

American Colony Hotel

$$ Fodor's choice

This upscale hotel is an elegant 19th-century limestone building with cane furniture, Armenian ceramic tiles, and a delightful courtyard. The Mediterranean menu is very good, with twists on local favorites such as avocado-stuffed kubbeh or an Oriental mazza of local salads, as well as tourist-friendly fare that includes the hotel burger and Wiener schnitzel, harkening back to the hotel's German roots. There's nothing quite as delightful as a light lunch or afternoon tea in the cool lobby lounge, at the poolside restaurant, or on the patio under the trees, making for a well-earned break.

Austrian Hospice Café

$ Fodor's choice

This Viennese-style second-floor garden café in a guesthouse for pilgrims is a refined retreat from the chaos of the Old City markets down below. Lunch and dinner are available, and the deep burgundy walls, wooden tables, and classical music make this a lovely wintertime spot for light fare or dessert. Ask at reception about visiting the rooftop for a small fee: the views of the Old City are gorgeous.

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$$ Fodor's choice

Jerusalem is famous for its Kurdish kubbeh soup, made with softball-size meat-and-semolina dumplings, and Azura is the perfect place to try this classic dish. Tucked away in a plaza off the Machaneh Yehuda market, the cavelike kitchen is packed with massive pots simmering on kerosene burners. Try the velvety beet kubbeh soup, or the tangy hamusta soup made with lemon and chard. Delicious hummus is made daily, and on some days the oxtail stew has the pungent flavors of the market. If weather permits, grab an outdoor table to watch groups of old Iraqi men drink coffee and play backgammon on the benches nearby. The restaurant closes when the food runs out, so don't arrive too late.

4 Haeshkol St., 9432204, Israel
Known For
  • comforting Israeli home cooking
  • beet kubbeh soup
  • outdoor dining
Restaurants Details
Rate Includes: Closed Sat. No dinner


$$ Fodor's choice

On a quiet alley off the main East Jerusalem thoroughfare, this white-tablecloth restaurant in a hotel by the same name has long been popular with journalists, NGO workers, and local families, who flock here for pizzas from the olive-wood-burning brick oven and Palestinian favorites. High wooden ceilings, stone walls, and a simple outdoor garden create a lovely setting perfect for groups of any size. Enjoy a glass of wine or local beer along with the tasty mansaf, a regional lamb dish cooked in yogurt; or the mulukhiya, an earthy vegetarian stew served over rice. Save a little room for the complimentary Arabic sweets and hot tea served at the end of the meal by friendly waiters.

Cafe Kadosh

$$ Fodor's choice

This venerable pastry shop and café run by Itzik and Keren Kadosh is known for its array of airy croissants and inventive pastries, with an annual focus on doughnuts made during the Chanukah season, filled with fruit-based creams and topped with handmade confectionary.

Café Yehoshua

$$ Fodor's choice

Locals flock to Café Yehoshua at breakfast, lunch, and dinner for its Israeli take on American diner food. The menu includes everything from tahini pancakes to spaghetti tossed with shrimp. A laid-back yet vibrant atmosphere and a location just a few minutes' walk from the prime minister's residence make it a great spot for quality people-watching in one of Jerusalem's quaintest neighborhoods. In good weather, the rooftop dining area lets you enjoy the fresh air. Evening is a great time to stop by for a drink and a bite-size burger.


$$$$ Fodor's choice

Despite being one of the city's best-known restaurants, Chakra still feigns anonymity: its name is nowhere in sight. It draws a lively thirtysomething crowd of hip Jerusalemites who appreciate the tasty fare from the open kitchen. The tables are arranged around the striking semicircular bar, and the patio enjoys a park view. Daily specials enhance the expansive menu, which changes every three months. Some good starters include focaccia, calamari with labane, or black tiger shrimp with chili. Try the sea bream, grilled to perfection on a mound of mashed cauliflower and wild mushrooms. The well-stocked bar includes Israeli boutique beers and bitters, along with a list of expertly balanced cocktails.


$$ Fodor's choice

Locals rejoiced big time when this casual kosher spot opened, bringing with it a menu of creative street food (not to mention Jerusalem’s best artisan bread and meat purveyors). It's all complemented by craft Israeli beers and signature cocktails in a vibrant and loud "America in Israel" atmosphere. Get the duck fries, sliders, and a range of options on the "taco bar" menu, and then chomp in disbelief that the food is so delicious and kosher at the same time.

1 Hashikma St., 9432301, Israel
Known For
  • gourmet street food
  • lively atmosphere
  • duck fries, sliders, and a "taco bar"
Restaurants Details
Rate Includes: No dinner Fri.; no lunch Sat.


$$$$ Fodor's choice

Chef Moshe Basson, repeated winner of international couscous contests, has mined the kitchens of older Jewish and Arab women to revive nearly forgotten recipes and ingredients. Grab a seat on the outside patio, adjacent to the Old City walls on one side and overlooking the picturesque Hutzot Hayotzer artists colony on the other. The appetizers are all tasty, but try the crepelike pastilla filled with duck confit and pumpkin jam, or the extraordinary stuffed mallow leaves (instead of the more conventional grape leaves). Two exquisite mains include traditional makloubeh with chicken and rice, and the clay-baked lamb with okra. Vegetarians will find plenty of options, and there are a few tasting menus if you want to try it all. Finish with unusual desserts and herbal tea. If you're in the mood, ask Basson to share some of his culinary lore. 

14 Hativat Jerusalem St., 9411714, Israel
Known For
  • one of the most acclaimed restaurants in Jerusalem
  • traditional makloubeh with chicken and rice
  • tasting menu
Restaurants Details
Rate Includes: Closed Fri. No lunch Sat., Reservations essential

Hasandwich Shel Rachelle

$$ Fodor's choice

This Tunisian hole-in-the-wall offers pillowy hand-rolled couscous, slow-cooked stews, and zingy tuna and egg sandwiches, served outside on tiny tables or packed up to go. There is no menu, just whatever owner Motti Hadad is cooking in the closet-size kitchen.


$$ Fodor's choice

Consistently ranked among the country's best burger places, Iwo's was founded by a butcher and serves expertly grilled patties on pillowy rolls. Black-and-white-tiled walls evoke American diner traditions, but this is a sleeves-up, self-service destination. You can top your burger with sunny-side-up eggs, crispy bacon, grilled onions, and a rainbow of sauces. The veggie portobello option is just as good, and there are several salads as well. It's a great place to start or end an evening with a burger and a beer.

Jacko's Street

$$$ Fodor's choice

This is where Jerusalemites go to have a loud, raucous good time and eat great Israeli food all in one fell swoop. It's all about the twists on local meat dishes, especially the meat-stuffed ravioli and asado risotto. Be sure to check out the hidden bar, Jacko's Son, behind the "fridge of Tequila bottles." It's tough to score a reservation, so call way in advance.

Jaffar Sweets

$ Fodor's choice

Jaffar specializes in kunafe, the Nablus sweet made of goat cheese topped with syrupy semolina crumbles. You may be tempted to split your first plate, but the treat soon grows addictive. Jaffar also makes sheets of golden baklava topped with nuts. It's a landmark, visited by locals and tourists alike, so anyone in the Old City can help you find it.


$$$$ Fodor's choice

On the edge of its namesake market, this restaurant is considered one of the best in Jerusalem, possibly the country. Celebrity chef Assaf Granit grew up in Jerusalem and pays homage to the city's colors and cacophony in his elegant dishes. You can wait for your reservation across the street at Yudaleh, a lively cocktail bar by the same owners. Once in, grab a seat at the bar to watch the exuberant chefs slice, dice, and sauté while banging on the pots and pans to the beat of zippy music. The menu changes twice daily, but nearly always includes chamshuka, a fusion of chopped meat and hummus; a creamy polenta topped with crisp asparagus, mushroom ragout, and shaved Parmesan; and a raucous dessert ceremony of ice cream flung on tables covered in aluminum foil. To enjoy the full range of flavors, order the tasting menu. Reserve at least one month in advance. 

10 Beit Yaakov St., 9432316, Israel
Known For
  • top restaurant in Jerusalem
  • exuberant chefs
  • changing menu that may include chamshuka, a fusion of meat and hummus
Restaurants Details
Rate Includes: No dinner Fri. No lunch Sat., Reservations essential


$$$ Fodor's choice

Sink into one of Menza's retro-style banquettes or take a seat around a robust wooden table for a deliciously prepared meal in this lovely café between downtown and Machaneh Yehuda market. Israeli breakfast or brunch dishes like croque monsieur are served as late as 1 pm, but be sure to stop by again in the evening to try the creative versions of bistro classics such as seared tuna niçoise salad. The menu also lists vegan options.


$$$$ Fodor's choice

Nestled into a stone-walled garden, Mona has a working fireplace and a tree growing through the indoor section, creating a rustic setting for eminently modern Israeli cooking. Start your night with the light red tuna sashimi with chili or the award-winning crab bisque. Do not miss the beautifully prepared beef fillet with sweetbreads and purple cabbage. Vegetarians will seek refuge in various thoughtfully prepared salads. For dessert, try the sour cream and Szechuan sorbet over nectarine compote. Wait until later in the evening if you just want to order cocktails based on homemade liquor at the excellent bar. Brunch on Saturday is particularly decadent. Reservations are essential on weekends. 

12 Shmuel Hanagid, 94592, Israel
Known For
  • beautiful location
  • equally stunning food
  • decadent brunch
Restaurants Details
Rate Includes: No lunch Sun.–Thurs., Reservations essential


$$ Fodor's choice

Nadi has great food all day but shines in the morning, when the breakfast plates come crowded with mouthwatering spreads of sun-dried tomato, olive tapenade, local cheeses, tuna, and tahini, all meant to be slathered on fabulous sourdough bread. Other offerings are delicious, colorful salads; earthy asparagus and spinach pasta; shakshuka made out of tomatoes, spinach, or beets; croissant sandwiches; quiches; and fresh coffee.


$ Fodor's choice

When aficionados of local standards like garlicky hummus, skewered shish kebabs, fried chicken schnitzel, and bean soup argue hotly about the merits of their favorite eateries, Pinati—which means "corner" in Hebrew—comes up as a leading contender. It's now a chain, but this simple downtown spot remains a convenient place to rub shoulders with locals while eating expertly prepared food. Not for long, though: your table will soon be in demand, and you will have to share at peak times.


$$$$ Fodor's choice

On the top of the Mamilla Hotel, this open-air restaurant lays claim to one of the best views of Jerusalem, and you can enjoy it from a cushioned chair as you sip spiked iced tea and dine on seared sea bass or grilled lamb chops with Swiss chard. The extensive wine list features more than 20 local boutique labels. During the Sabbath, the Rooftop serves a cold menu of salads and fish. The atmosphere is lovely and the view is unbeatable, so advance reservations are a must in summer.

Sarwa Street Kitchen

$ Fodor's choice

Mo Tahhan opened this cheery café in the space that was once his father's travel agency with the vision of creating a gathering spot as comfy and as fun as your living room at home. Staff often joins patrons for a chat on the bright blue couches and encourages them to add or take from the in-house library stocked with a selection of English-language books. Changing daily specials include maqloubeh, a Palestinian rice and chicken dish, or the bright orange knaffeh, the traditional cheese pastry soaked in syrup, for dessert. Excellent coffee, pastries, Wi-Fi, and in-house printers create a kind of coworking vibe during the day, but the wine list and excellent pastas also attract more serious diners later on.


$$$$ Fodor's choice

Just under the Jerusalem Theatre, Talbiye is a cozy neighborhood restaurant and wine bar specializing in French--Israeli cuisine. The soundtrack of classical music during the day and jazz at night, as well as the rustic-chic decor, provide a sophisticated atmosphere for a solid clientele of politicians, judges, and Jerusalemite intelligentsia. Don't miss the moules frites (mussels served with french fries) or the sea bream cooked in white wine, and finish off the rich meal with a baba au rhum, a small bundt cake doused in sweet rum.

Tmol Shilshom

$$ Fodor's choice

The name—a Hebrew literary phrase that translates roughly as "yesteryear"—is a clue to the character of the place. A tiny passageway leads to a rear courtyard and an iron stairway, which takes you up to this funky restaurant and bookstore in two separate rooms on the top floor of a 19th-century house. Hosting Hebrew (and occasionally English) poetry readings, lectures, small art exhibitions and modest book parties, T'mol Shilshom has long been a popular spot for folks who enjoy lingering over a novel. No meat is served, but choose from a tempting selection of salads, pastas, and fish dishes. Desserts are luscious, and the array of hot drinks served in chunky ceramic mugs is always welcome on a rainy day.


$$$$ Fodor's choice

On a hillside opposite Jerusalem's Old City, this is one of the best spots to dine when the stone walls reflect the golden sunset. The menu is heavy on meat and draws from Mediterranean influences. For starters, try the leek patties or the earthy bean soup with truffle oil. Ceviche is served with grated tomatoes, a nod to Yemenite kitchens. The standout dish is shpondra, or thin rib, cooked for seven hours. Vegetarians will find grilled artichokes or black risotto with mushrooms. Desserts are tasty, and the extensive wine list features local and foreign bottles. Look around while you dine; Touro is underneath the Jerusalem Press Club and is frequented by prominent local and foreign journalists.

2 Nachon St., 9411012, Israel
Known For
  • views of Hinom Valley and Mt. Zion
  • gorgeous 150-year-old building
  • shpondra, or thin rib, cooked for seven hours
Restaurants Details
Rate Includes: Closed Fri. No lunch Sat.


$$$ Fodor's choice

In this elegantly clubby version of the 24-hour diner, you can enjoy a wide variety of breakfast options, from the traditional English breakfast of bacon, sausage, baked beans, and a sunny-side-up egg, to the classic Israeli breakfast of eggs, cheeses, and fresh vegetables. Later on you can sample the house-made pumpkin tortellini or the famous French toast. There's a discount when you dine on weekday afternoons. There's a good kids' menu that's served fast to keep little ones happy.

Abu Shukri


In the heart of the Old City, this place has some of the best hummus in town, served fast to locals crammed around rickety tables under fluorescent lights. Enjoy the excellent falafel, eggplant salad, and labaneh (a slightly tart yogurt drizzled with olive oil and spices). Eat family style and don't order too much, as you can get additional portions on the spot.

63 El-Wad Rd., 9750072, Israel
Known For
  • light on the wallet
  • colorful salads
  • family-style dining
Restaurants Details
Rate Includes: No dinner, Reservations not accepted



The name means "red" in Hebrew, referring to the 150 kinds of wine that decorate every wall in this large yet cozy restaurant. The menu has roots in Mediterranean kitchens, and includes loads of meat and seafood options. Try the fantastic Jerusalem mixed grill—it's a gussied-up version of the city's famed street food. Desserts include tahini ice cream and a dark chocolate, gluten-free "Nemesis cake." If you're seated at the bar, look up: when Adom moved to the First Station complex, the old restaurant's plates were converted into intricate light fixtures. Don't arrive Friday evening without reservations.

Al Mufti Espresso Cafe


This excellent authentic coffee shop in the Muslim Quarter serves traditional brewed coffee alongside a sesame cookie, as well as freshly squeezed pomegranate and other juices.

12 Via Dolorosa, 9762612, Israel
Known For
  • fresh squeezed pomegranate juice
  • sesame cookies
  • traditional Arabic coffee



This popular eatery with a geometric mirrored ceiling is steps from the King David Street hotel district. The steaks are among the city's finest, as are the desserts, including dark-chocolate mousse and fresh fruit over tapioca pudding. The staff is helpful and friendly, and the knowledgeable sommelier will guide you to unusual Israeli vintages.

4 George Washington St., 9418704, Israel
Known For
  • inventive combinations
  • top-notch desserts
  • unusual Israeli vintage wines
Restaurants Details
Rate Includes: Closed Fri.–Sat., Reservations essential



At this East Jerusalem bistro, the stone walls are hung with local art and antique musical instruments. In summer, you can enjoy your meal on a lovely patio. The menu emphasizes salads—the tabbouleh is a refreshing mix of parsley and cracked wheat—simple pastas, and heavy-hitting meat dishes. The service is efficient and unpretentious, and the well-stocked bar includes local Palestinian Taybeh beer and wine from Bethlehem, along with European imports. Most Thursdays feature live music.

11 Shimon Hatzadik, 9725011, Israel
Known For
  • authentic tabbouleh
  • open on Friday night
  • hidden gem