Israeli cuisine is having a moment in Williamsburg. Following in the footsteps of the incredibly popular Laser Wolf and K’Far, another Israeli-inspired restaurant, Mesiba (353 Bedford Avenue), opens today, March 15, in the new Moxy hotel near the Williamsburg Bridge.

The exterior of the new Moxy hotel in Williamsburg. Photo: Moxy

Mesiba, which means “party” in Hebrew, will be operated by Bar Lab Hospitality, the group behind Broken Shaker, a small chain of trendy bars with locations in Manhattan, Miami, Chicago, and Los Angeles. One of Bar Lab Hospitality’s founding partners, Elad Zvi, and his childhood memories of Israel, are part of what inspired Mesiba. 

A second part of Mesiba’s inspiration hails from the head of the kitchen. Chef Eli Buliskeria, known as Chef Buli, who previously worked under a renown chef in Tel Aviv, now brings that expertise to Williamsburg.

Chef Buli created a dinner menu that encompasses the melting pot of Levantine cuisine, which incorporates a wide range of influences from Israel, Lebanon, Egypt, Turkey, Palestine, and the Eastern Mediterranean.

Mesiba’s menu is mainly focused on sharable plates. It starts with a category called ‘nishnushim,’ which loosely refers to “snacks.” This section includes small sharable items like Frena bread, a traditional Moroccan bread topped with sea salt, sesame, and sage oil, and fluke crudo with red cardamom and carrot consomme, fermented peppers, and pickled fennel. The menu’s next section is called ‘yalla’ and includes appetizers like tuna crudo, charred octopus, salad, mushroom shawarma, and Mesiba’s take on baba ganoush. 


Next, the menu includes categories called ‘gadol,’ which literally translates to “big,” and the restaurant’s namesake ‘mesiba.’ These two sections offer larger plates including prawns, salmon, whole fried branzino, and 48-hour braised lamb neck. A unique and vegetarian option is the kreplach, which is a modern vegetarian take on a traditional Ashkenazi dish. 

Mesiba’s menu is rounded out by a small dessert section and a larger selection of beverages. There are several unique and exciting cocktail options like the Arak service that includes an anise aperitif popular in the Middle East served with grapefruit and honeydew. There are also wines by the glass, beer, and dessert wines and cocktails. 

“I am very humbled to bring a contemporary Tel Avivian restaurant to life here in Williamsburg,” Chef Buli said in a press release. “There are so many unique ingredients, preparations that reflect the diversity of the communities across the region, and flavors that evoke memories of my home that I can’t wait to celebrate and share,” the chef continued.

Mesiba currently only serves dinner. The restaurant is open Wednesday, Thursday, and Sunday 5 p.m. – 11 p.m. and Friday and Saturday 5 p.m. – midnight. Reservations are available on Resy.

The lobby bar at the Moxy. Photo: Moxy

In addition to Mesiba, the Moxy in Williamsburg is also home to Bar Bedford, an all-day cafe and cocktail bar, and Jolene Sound Room, a nightclub. LilliStar, an indoor and outdoor rooftop bar with tropical-style cocktails, Balinese barbecue and skyline views, will open on the hotel’s roof in the Spring. There are four Moxy hotels in Manhattan, but this is the first in Brooklyn.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *