Where to Enjoy Palestinian Food in New York

Mansaf, a common dish with lamb, rice and almonds with fermented yoghurt sauce, at Ayat.
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Robert Sietsema / Eater NY

New York City has long been a great place to try Middle Eastern dishes, and many restaurants designated in such general terms have had overlapping menus. But over time, there has been a greater effort to distinguish between national cuisines and identify the dishes and special presentations that make them unique.

The latest that has emerged is Palestinian, partly because of a historically challenging political climate that has prompted changing attitudes towards the region’s future, and partly because a new generation has put a special pride in homemade dishes like msakhan, mansaf, mahshi and knafeh, which are among the shining stars of the kitchen.

Thanks to groundbreaking restaurants, beginning with Tanoreen in 1998, and culminating in 2020 with the arrival of Ayat – both in Bay Ridge – New Yorkers can increasingly enjoy Palestinian food in its cultural context, although some incidents of harassment by restaurant owners have been reported. Here is a selection of Palestinian restaurants around the city and outside.

Health experts consider eating out is one high risk activity for the unvaccinated; the latest data on the delta variant indicate that it may constitute a low to moderate risk for the vaccinated, especially in areas with significant transmission. The latest CDC guide is here; find a COVID-19 vaccination site here.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

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