WE’RE PRETTY SURE the harder it is to pronounce a restaurant’s name, the more amazing the experience is guaranteed to be. At least that’s the case with Silverlake’s Mh Zh – an Israeli restaurant that quietly snuck into the ultra-hip Sunset Junction, and then casually blew our minds.
The name of this neighbor-hoody new haunt is a shortening of the Hebrew phrase “mah zeh” which roughly translates to “what is it?”. The quick answer is “a hotspot worth the hype”, but to really understand you’ll have to dine there yourself. In the mean time, check out what LA lady and foodiue extordinaire, Celeste Wilson of the True Spoon, thinks of it…
You know you’re in Silverlake when the hottest restaurant on the block has no sign, no phone, takes no reservations and has a name nostalgic of Prince’s unpronounceable symbol. Mh Zh is a new contemporary vegetable-forward Israeli restaurant using local ingredients, with an open kitchen and outdoor seating on Sunset Blvd. All the vintage-clad creative kids on the Eastside have discovered this elusive spot, and the people watching alone is worth the trip.
WHAT I ATE: Mh Zh’s hummus with pickled veggies, served with an Eastside favorite, Bub and Grandma’s bread, frisée salad with duqqa and aged English cheddar, grilled beets with hazelnut and labneh, potato with charred lemon, and lamb ragu. I ate it all, but didn’t drink a drop (insert sad face emoji). Mh Zh has not been approved for a beer/wine or liquor license yet – fingers crossed.
WHY I ATE IT: This sliver of a restaurant in one of Silverlake’s most walkable pockets has created a total rubber-neck effect. Everyone who passes by foot or wheel, is enticed by the unassuming metal sidewalk tables and floor to ceiling windows, exposing a tiny kitchen filled with local lemons, herbs and freshly baked bread. The handwritten recycled paper-bag menu is small, in the best way, offering a handful of thoughtfully simple food. The painter’s palate of fresh vegetable dishes are accentuated by rustically torn herbs, satiating the eye before the first bite.
WHY YOU NEED IT: You need a night at Mh Zh primarily for the ambiance; the alfresco dining space transports you to a Tel Aviv-esque dreamland. The waitstaff was incredibly helpful and low key, happily answering all of my questions about the exotic ingredients. I am normally a low-carb kind of girl but my absolute favorite menu item was, shockingly, a white potato dish?! I don’t know what kind of culinary magic was happening behind the scenes with this one, but I need the recipe!