New York City has long been a great place to sample Middle Eastern fare, and many restaurants designated in such general terms have had overlapping menus. But gradually there has been more of an effort to distinguish between national cuisines, and identify the dishes and special presentations that make them unique.
The latest to emerge is Palestinian, partly owing to a historically challenging political climate that’s prompted changing attitudes toward the region’s future, and partly because a new generation has taken particular pride in home-style dishes like msakhan, mansaf, mahshi, and knafeh, which are among the shining stars of the cuisine.
Thanks to trailblazing 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, though some incidents of harassment of restaurant owners have been reported. Here’s a choice selection of Palestinian restaurants around town and beyond.
Health experts consider dining out to be a high-risk activity for the unvaccinated; the latest data about the delta variant indicates that it may pose a low-to-moderate risk for the vaccinated, especially in areas with substantial transmission. The latest CDC guidance is here; find a COVID-19 vaccination site here.Read More