Mazel Tov’s Mediterranean fusion kitchen redefines the ruin bar concept by bringing the magic of the Middle East to Budapest. Learn more on JustBudapest.
When you’ve done it all from thermal water dipping through river cruising to pálinka tasting, it’s time to explore the concrete jungle downtown. Walking through the 7th district of Budapest, you might feel like you’ve got lost and somehow turned up in a hipster commune filled with ruin bars, tiny coffee shops, and street food vendors. You might’ve already heard of the ruin pubs of Budapest, but have you ever heard of a ruin restaurant? Mazel Tov is truly one of a kind: a Mediterranean restaurant with live music, hypnotizing interior, mouth-watering dishes, and drinks – all situated in the run-down hall of an early 1900s residential house.
With a name like ‘Mazel Tov’ (Hebrew for ‘Good luck), it probably won’t come as a surprise that the venue is in the heart of the Jewish Quarter in Budapest. From the outside, it looks just like a regular neglected downtown building – except for the shop sign and (more often than not) a long line of people, which indicates that something exciting hides behind those walls. Following the lightbulbs of the hallway, you find out pretty quickly what all the fuss is about. The interior design of Mazel Tov displays the well-known ruin pub charm, but it has a much more sophisticated feeling to it. Sporting clean shapes, yellow lights, white color, wooden walls, and a plethora of greens, this place has really brought a touch of Middle Eastern magic to the garden of an old residential house. Looking up, there’s a see-through rooftop with impressive wooden carpentry that gives you the feeling of open space, still the venue is rainproof throughout the whole year, while the many windows allow it to be airy in the summertime and heated on chilly winter days.
As you already know, Mazel Tov means ‘Good luck’. But in Jewish culture, it is used in many situations and is often associated with entertainment, eating together, and recreation. The ‘amusement garden’ (as the owners define their venue) aims to embody all these things creating an open-minded, gastronomically and culturally flourishing place where anyone can feel comfortable whether they’re visiting for a big dinner, a few friendly drinks, or just a refreshing lemonade. One of Mazel Tov’s key cultural goals is to provide space for everyone who believes in an open and inclusive world. This obviously includes dogs as well, so if you’re planning to visit a restaurant with your four-legged bud, this is your place to go. If you take a look at their usual schedule, you’ll notice that no matter when you visit, you’ll never be bored: from afternoon children’s activities, through exhibitions, to evening concerts and DJ sets, Mazel Tov has it all on its plate. And since we’re already talking about plates, and eating together is very important in the Jewish culture, let’s see what the culinary pleasures Mazel Tov has to offer.
Reimagining the cuisine of Israel and fusing it with dishes and spices from all the Middle Eastern area, Mazel Tov created something entirely new and exciting. It’s important to point out that they do not serve Jewish (kosher) food here, so keep that in mind when inviting your religious friends. On the food menu you can find Lebanese dishes like babaganoush, Turkish shawarma, Moroccan lamb soup and Yemen style chicken soup as well. Besides the national meals you can taste countless variations of the Middle Eastern superstars, hummus and shakshuka. To be honest, all their meals are out of this world, so we recommend you visit Mazel Tov on multiple occasions and eat yourself through their menu. Their favorite spices are coriander and tahini, but you can order everything without the former if you’re the “cilantro tastes like soap” kind of person. After all these spices, you’ll be in the urgent need of thirst-quenching, so it’s time to pull up the drink’s menu. Soft drink-wise, they serve the essentials of all the ‘hip’ places, such as Fentimans, Fever Tree, and Old Jamaican, but it’s best to try their homemade lemonades, even if they’re a bit pricey. Being true to the traditions of Arabic nations, they offer a wide variety of hot teas and being true to Hungarian ones, they have a number of local craft beers as well.
As you might have already suspected, this place is not your usual cheap ruin bar, so you’ll need a bit thicker wallet when coming here. But don’t be afraid – it’s far from expensive, and if you take into consideration the atmosphere and the quality of the food and drinks, Mazel Tov’s prices are more than fair. A main course ranges from 2300-5500 HUF (6-15 EUR), their lemonade is 1150 HUF (3 EUR), a draught beer is between 550 and 1450 HUF (2-5 EUR), and wine prices vary in a wide range, but still without going through the roof.
- Are there any good Jewish restaurants in Budapest?
- Yes, there are a couple of traditional Jewish restaurants with kosher food in Budapest. But if you don’t insist on eating kosher, Mazel Tov is your place. Situated in the heart of the Jewish Quarter, they take what’s best in Middle Eastern gastronomy and create the perfect Mediterranean fusion kitchen experience in the garden of an old residential building.
- Are there any ruin bars where you can eat?
- Of course, most of them serve street food and buffet meals, but if you’re looking for something extra, you have to try Mazel Tov. It’s more of a restaurant than a bar, and their Middle Eastern fusion kitchen is famous all around the city for offering mouth-watering dishes and quality drinks in a peculiar atmosphere, all at fair prices.
tuesday 12:00 – 00:00
wednesday 12:00 – 00:00
thursday 12:00 – 00:00
friday 12:00 – 00:00
saturday 11:00 – 00:00
sunday 11:00 – 00:00