The Times Loves Zizi Limona’s Desserts

Zizi Limona (c/o NY Times)

Mr. Mesika doubles as pastry chef. (His grandfather was a baker for the king of Morocco.) A cardamom-laced semolina cake anointed with rosewater syrup arrives in rubble around a mound of vanilla ice cream, with shavings of sesame halvah twisted up into a peak and drizzles of tahini and silan down the slopes ($7). It is an astonishingly calming dessert, the polar opposite of a sundae: there are so many flavors that you want to take your time eating it. Baklava ($6) is almost as light, with spice outflanking sugar, the pistachio-walnut paste seeded with coriander, fennel and ginger, then finished with a syrup of anise, cardamom and cinnamon.

The restaurant, which opened in Williamsburg in September, cultivates an air of unhurry. Enter and the pulse slows. Tables are set a respectful distance from one another. Empty picture frames hang on exposed brick walls, blank as the mind. The only distraction is the soundtrack, which makes jarring shifts: you might start the meal with “Stairway to Heaven” and end it with Jack Johnson. It is a long way to fall.

More information here.

Now Open: Zizi Limona and L’isola

Zizi Limona

Zizi Limona


The new Williamsburg restaurant Zizi Limona is now open in the Southside:

Sourcing fresh seasonal and local ingredients, Zizi offers updated versions of Mediterranean home cooked classics like the Cowshuka, poached eggs in shakshuka tomato stew served with skirt steak seasoned with preserved lemons & rosemary, or a 5 hour crispy filo bureka stuffed with slow cooked tender oxtail, black olives, and crushed tomatoes. Try the insanely low priced lunch starter menu as you feast your taste buds on flavors from all four corners of the Mediterranean with crazy Italian style babaganoush, North African Tershi, Israeli style stuffed root veggies, Egyptian roasted vegetable hummus, and a signature oxtail Tanzia. Finish with traditional charcoal black coffee and sweeter than sweet Basbosa Semolina cake, Malabi créme, or shaved Halva.
Zizi features a full bar with a cocktails menu drowned in Arak, Pomegranate, and Mint but also classic cocktails, wine, and beer. Like our famous matriarch, our kitchen is open for lunch and dinner 7 days a week and offer a customized takeout menu that ensures your food travels well.

More information here.

There’s also a new gourmet pizza restaurant at 128 Metropolitan Ave. called L’isola, though we’re yet to try it out. Let us know if you have in comments.