611 Hudson Street
212.390.1545 / OpenTable
If you know me, you may know that after peanut butter I have an undying love for and allegiance to Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cuisines. The ingredients are fresh and simple, so there’s no hiding overcooked meat and tasteless veggies behind heavy sauces to trick people into thinking they’re eating good food – the food has to actually be good. I’ve always been a huge fan of Chef Einat Admony’s Balaboosta and Taim restaurants in Soho, so I was elated when she opened Bar Bolonat earlier this year. I have to say, I think Balaboosta is better, but nonetheless Bar Bolonat serves strong modern Israeli plates.
If you can, try to get a table downstairs in the private dining room/wine cellar. The upstairs section is a pretty combination of modern and rustic, but the downstairs is so much more unique. Looking to impress a date or your picky, slightly uptight but still a little cool parents? Here’s your shot.
Start your meal off right with the Jerusalem Bagel, large enough for 4 to share. Warm and doughy, you’ll be in heaven already. The japanese eggplant and baby artichokes are also great calls, but skip the fried cauliflower, which was a little flavorless and is much better as a side at Balaboosta.
The zabzi tagine and branzino essentially brought tears to my eyes. The short rib in the tagine is tender and flavorful, definitely a better call than the tough and too chewy minute steak entree. The poussin and branzino are lighter, but well prepared and also great options if you want to save room for dessert.
Speaking of, the best options are the moroccan tea gelato (with baklava) and the halva creme brulee. Boom, you’re happy, full and done.
*Images from GrubStreet