Issue No.
173, September 2012 Latest update 9 2014f August 2014, at 4.39 am
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     My Restaurant Experience

Bethlehem Peace Centre Restaurant
By the Phantom Diner
Ideally situated on Manger Square facing the Nativity Church, the Bethlehem Peace Centre Restaurant is an imposing presence. Its lovely covered patio is a good place for some argileh, but this isn’t the restaurant’s only attraction. The friendly staff and hearty food make for an enjoyable meal at any time of year.

What attracted me to this restaurant in the first place was its location. It sits right on Manger Square, which is always active. It would be a great place to take visitors from out of town, as they can eat and face the Nativity Church, one of Christianity’s most holy places. Bethlehem’s temperate climate also allows one to sit on the patio throughout the summer and into the winter. Not many restaurants in Bethlehem invest in spacious verandas where one can sit outdoors and enjoy the fresh air. The space is also great for private parties and big groups, as the inside of the restaurant is quite spacious with its simple but pleasantly furnished interior.

The menu has enough variety to leave most people satisfied. The owner has combined international choices with Palestinian cuisine, and the menu showcases both traditional dishes and other diverse choices. The menu delivers a delectable array of dishes that reflect a proud Palestinian heritage and an enthusiasm for modern tastes. You can kick off your meal with appetizers such as Palestinian cheese, chicken fingers with honey-mustard sauce, amazing fish sticks with lemon, or spicy wings. Each dish shows the same care and attention to detail-a garnish here, a slick of dressing there. There are also soups, salads (caesar, greek, and sumac), sandwiches (freshly made burgers and chicken), pastas, and main entrees, such as the chicken cordon bleu, delicious eggplant, or chicken parmesan. Palestinian entrees such as maqloubeh, msakhan, mansaf, tajin or qidreh are all offered on the daily menu, which is what I found quite unexpected and pleasantly surprising.

The Bethlehem Peace Center Restaurant, at its most impressive, delivers a seamless mix of the refined and rustic, combining Palestinian dishes, which are not normally found in restaurants in Bethlehem, with other common selections.
Throughout our visit, we were also charmed by the staff, who were attentive and engaged. Maybe that is why the restaurant has garnered a significant following for its food, which is made with heart and served in a charming space. The restaurant is small enough to be intimate, and large enough to accommodate large gatherings of friends and family.

Eat this: Palestinian entrees, such as maqloubeh, msakhan, mansaf, tajin, or qidreh, all for NIS20, are served daily. The fish sticks, chicken cordon bleu, and eggplant parmesan are also recommended.

Drink this: With the summer menu, try fresh juices or Palestine’s own Taybeh draft beer.

Sit here: The best spots for soaking up the familial vibe are at the tables at the front of the restaurant, which offer prime people watching in Bethlehem’s Manger Square.

Manger Square, Bethlehem
Tel: 059-5187622
Open every day from 9 a.m. until evening

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