It was long in the making, but the wait seems to be well worth it. Bavel, the second restaurant of the husband and wife duo who brought us Bestia, opened to rave reviews at the end of April. Bavel Restaurant DTLA Downtown LA
Highly anticipated since the announcement of its inception in 2013, Bavel takes inspiration from a wide range of Middle Eastern cuisines, all merging together perfectly.
The namesake of the restaurant is taken from the Hebrew word for “Babel,” the Judeao-Christian tale referencing a unified Middle East torn apart through the confusion of language.
But rest assured, there is no confusion when it comes to the quality of food at Bavel.
The menu is undoubtedly inspired by chef and owners Ori Menashe and wife Genevieve Gergis’ diverse background in Middle Eastern culture, with some European culinary techniques. Countries like Israel, Egypt, Turkey and Morocco make up the taste palettes in the dishes, while Spanish and French cooking techniques tie it all together. Bavel is a representation of all of these distinct cultural backgrounds.
A total of 30 items make up the hearty menu at Bavel, including hot and cold appetizers, spreads and charcuterie, flatbreads, entrees big enough to share among your table, with a unique cocktail menu to boot.
The standout of the entire menu has to be the Slow Roasted Lamb Neck Shawarma. Tender, fatty and lean morsels of slow-roasted lamb are served with fresh Laffa bread, delicious Tahini, pickled cabbage and turnips, along with a Habanero and mango sauce.
Another entree to try is the Confit Tumeric Chicken Leg, served with a Yemenite pancake and fennel salad. The chicken is cooked until it is unbelievably tender, making it easy to pick up with a piece of the pancake as a hands-on dish.
Lastly, the Wagyu Beef Cheek Tagine is another sharable option on the list of entrees. Made with braised cheeks, chilies, preserved lemon, turnips and green garbanzo, and served with couscous.
For appetizers and spreads, the Grilled Prawn, with a harissa marinade and eggplant tzatziki is must, while the Duck ‘Nduja Hummus brings a spicy Italian twist to a Middle Eastern staple.
There are four flatbread options to choose from, with the lamb and chicken liver variations being standouts. Bavel Restaurant DTLA Downtown LA
For dessert, try the Rose clove chocolate doughnuts made with Bar au Chocolat ganache and served with sherry diplomat cream. Or the licorice ice cream bon bon, made with sour licorice caramel, muscovado cake, caramelized white chocolate and Maldon salt.