The area extends from the Machaneh Yehuda market and Nachla'ot neighborhood, through the central Downtown triangle, to King David Street. The range is vast, from funky budget or takeaway joints to upscale fine-dining specialists, from Middle Eastern food to European cuisine, and several surprises in between. Nonkosher restaurants do a roaring trade on Friday night, after the Sabbath begins, when their kosher counterparts are closed and the city streets quiet.
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Café Mizrachi12 HaShezif St. 02-624–2105
Established by Eli Mizrachi, who once sold dried beans in a stall at Machaneh Yehuda, and run by his pastry-chef daughter Moran, this café started a wave of creative eateries in the city's sprawling vegetable market. The café is known for its excellent local fare, including fresh pasta with Jerusalem artichokes and leeks; four-cheese ravioli with a cherry tomato and pepper confit; and the wondrously sinful ricotta-and-raisin brioche. The coffee is also excellent. This is a worthwhile stop on summer evenings, when Mizrachi stays open late to serve drinks, light dishes, and sometimes jazz.
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