DTLA: Bavel is Now Open in the Arts District

lamb neck


The long awaited second restaurant from chefs Ori Menashe and Genevieve Gergis, Bavel, is now open. The husband and wife team also have the nearby highly acclaimed (and delicious) Bestia. While Bestia is Italian, Bavel pays tribute to the chefs’ Middle Eastern roots. The food is inspired by cuisines of Israel, Morocco, Turkey and Egypt.

Davi and Caleb

I dropped in a few days after the restaurant opened. We really lucked out grabbing a couple seats at the bar. By the time we left, there was a huge wait for any seat in the restaurant.

My friend ordered the Davi to start and I had the Caleb. We both really liked my drink which I found unusual by combining brandy and the agave spirit, sotol. Plus the bonus olive was really nice. I can’t wait to try more drinks.

Davi – Japanese whisky, Jamaican rum, tea

Caleb – Cognac, sotol, cassis, lemon, soda water

baba ghanoush


If there were more of us, we would have gotten all the dips. As it was, we opted for just the baba ghanoush. Now I am a huge eggplant fan but much prefer hummus over baba ghanoush any day. As it turned out, I just haven’t had the right one. This one at Bavel is amazing. But what was really awesome was the mini fried pita. We had to get another one to scrape up all the delicious spread.

lamb neck with condiments


Shown above is a close up on the lamb neck. I haven’t had lamb neck in a while but I’m going to declare this one as my favorite ever. Served with creme fraiche tahini, fermented cabbage, pickled turnips and laffa, the idea is to make yourself small bites with a little bit of the condiments.

oyster mushrooms


The stinging nettle cardamon puree with the oyster mushrooms rivaled the baba ghanoush as our fave sauce of the night. Real talk, we also ordered that second mini pita to scrape up this sauce. We had to brush aside several attempts to take away our empty plate while we waited for the arrival of that pita.

The mushrooms themselves were also very good. Three dishes, three winners!

As I was signing the check, I was already checking my calendar to see when I could go back. I want to try the foie gras halva, the duck liver and hearts flatbread, grilled prawns, the Wagyu beef cheeks. I also heard good things about the fish, the dorade.


500 Mateo St., Los Angeles, CA 90013  —  (213) 232-4966
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