Top 10 Downtown Jerusalem Restaurants Open on Saturday

Jerusalem has a reputation for shutting down Friday evening until Saturday night for Shabbat (the Jewish day of rest), so many visitors get a little bit nervous about finding a place to eat during that time.

However, in reality there’s no need to fear. There are plenty of great restaurants around Jerusalem open on Shabbat, especially in the vibrant city center.

So if you’re looking for a place to eat on Friday night or Saturday, here are 10 restaurants where you can’t go wrong…

Where to eat on Shabbat in the City Center

Dolphin Yam

Photo: Sea Dolphin restaurant

Photo: Sea Dolphin restaurant

With nearly five decades of experience, Dolphin Yam restaurant is now a proper Jerusalem food institute specializing in fresh and high quality fish, seafood and meats.

The restaurant is located in a beautiful ancient building which complements the cultural and culinary atmosphere in the place.

On the menu you will find barramundi fillet in tomato & baby shrimp with a hint of cream, homemade lamb kebab on piquant tomato sauce, fried soft shell crabs, and a large variety of shrimps, calamari, and scallops.

The indulgent dishes, exquisite atmosphere and homely service are your recipe for a relaxing Saturday. Don’t forget to try their changing menus of wines and desserts.

Where: 9 Ben Shtach St., Jerusalem

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Focaccia Bar


Photo: Mushkie Haskelevich

Focaccia Bar is a Friday night and Saturday afternoon hotspot for locals, expats and tourists alike.

The affordable, something-for-everyone menu boasting everything from Italian and Middle Eastern cuisine to Asian, burgers, steaks and more makes it a popular choice for groups and families.

Meanwhile, the lively bar and friendly bartenders attract their fair share of 20-30’s drinkers and diners.

Where: 6 Rabbi Akiva St., Jerusalem

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Photo: Courtesy of Mantra Restaurant

Wine-lovers won’t want to miss out on the cozy Mantra restaurant and bar, known best for its extensive wine list and menu tailored to suit it.

Also located in the Feingold Courtyard, Mantra offers 2 dining options — the spacious restaurant with indoor and outdoor seating and the cozy bar.

Check out the bar for its special menu of tapas-size dishes chosen specifically by the chef to pair with various wines from the cellar.

Where: 14 Rivlin St., Jerusalem

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Photo: Courtesy of Barood Restaurant

Sure, you have many options for dining out downtown on Shabbat, but you’re not going to find a restaurant with a better combination of delectable cuisine and atmosphere than Barood.

Located in the charming Feingold Courtyard, Barood serves a variety of Middle Eastern, Balkan and Mediterranean dishes alongside a fine selection of Israeli and imported wines.

Grabbing a table in the courtyard for some drinks and a meal during the summer is a popular choice for locals and tourists alike, and in the winter, the warm, intimate restaurant is the perfect place to escape the chilly Jerusalem nights.

Depending on the week, you can also catch a free live concert on Friday and/or Saturday afternoon featuring local musicians playing Jazz, Middle Eastern or Balkan music.

Where: 31 Jaffa St., Feingold Courtyard, Jerusalem

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Captain – Hamburger At The First Station

The First Station Complex in Jerusalem is where food and culture meet and become an unforgettably enjoyable culinary experience. A new burger stand has recently opened in the First Station and it soon became one of the most popular food destinations in Jerusalem: The Captain.

The Captain’s speciality is well made fresh burgers in sweet and soft buns with crispy onion rings. Bonus: free refills of soft drinks. The best part though is that you get all of that deliciousness for a great price too. The Captain is also vegetarian and vegan friendly.

Where: Captain, 4 David Remez St., The First Station, Jerusalem

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Photo: Mushkie Haskelvich

If you’re an ardent fan of authentic Italian food, then Cielo is the perfect destination for an intimate Friday night dinner or Saturday afternoon lunch.

Don’t expect to find any pizzas here. The menu is strictly authentic pasta, meat, fish and seafood dishes made fresh from only the best ingredients.

The space is rather small and intimate, so you’ll have to make reservations early to get a table during peak dining times.

Where: 18 Ben Sira St., Jerusalem


If you’re looking for fine-dining-level cuisine at affordable prices, then Menza is an absolute must-go during your visit to Jerusalem.

The bistro-style menu offers a pleasant balance of Mediterranean-inspired and continental crowd-pleasers executed at a gourmet level and creative concoctions that you’d expect at a high-end chef restaurant, as well as original and classic cocktails and wines for every budget.

Where: 10 Betsalel St., Jerusalem

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Photo: Courtesy of Mona Restaurant

Mona is fine dining cuisine at the highest level — perfect if you’re looking to impress or treat yourself.

Located in the Jerusalem Artists House building, the interior is exquisite, and the ever-changing menu offers some of the best and most creative fusion cuisine made using only the freshest locally sourced ingredients.

Where: 12 Shmuel Ha-Nagid St., Jerusalem



Photo: Courtesy of Link Restaurant

Link has been a weekend haven for secular locals and expats since before it was cool for restaurants to be open on Shabbat.

The resto-bar-style menu is has a little something for everyone — pastas, steaks, fish, salads burgers and other bar food items — and the atmosphere is lively and open, whether you’re sitting outside on the terrace or tucked away in the back-room bar.

Where: 3 Ma’alot Road, Jerusalem

Notre Dame Rooftop Wine & Cheese Restaurant

Photo: Courtesy of Notre Dame Restaurant

Last but certainly not least, you absolutely must check out the Rooftop Wine & Cheese Restaurant at the Notre Dame Center of Jerusalem, if not for the delectable food, then at least for one of the best views in the city and a lovely atmosphere.

Where: 3 Hatsanhanim St., Jerusalem

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