Al Ajami

One can’t help but feel nostalgic for the classic fine-dining restaurants of yesteryear when at Al Ajami, located across the street from Ramlet el-Bayda beach. Perhaps it’s the combination of white tablecloths, leather seats, and attentive black-suited waiters, but there’s definitely nothing dated about the flavors on its menu. Here, simplicity reigns supreme, starting with the ceramic plate of fresh vegetables, olives and Lebanese breads that land on your table as soon as you sit down.

Unknown image

Al Falamanki

This Beirut institution is a café/watering hole that was built as a son’s homage to his father. The owner Amis adored his father Khalil Al Falamanki, who was a wrestler before becoming the personal bodyguard of an Egyptian business tycoon with whom he traveled around the world. In this role, he met many movie stars from John Wayne to Frank Sinatra, and memorabilia adorns the walls of the original outpost near Beit Beirut, which has tables outside under olive trees. As those around you smoke shisha pipes, you will forget you are in the middle of the city. What Lebanese regulars and their guests come for is the old world atmosphere and the delicious Middle Eastern food, including some of the best mezze in the city. For a great lunch with a view head to the newer branch Al Falamanki Raouche, facing the sea by Pigeon’s Rock.

Editors' Picks
Unknown image

Em Sherif

A restaurant so popular, it has spawned three additional locations in Dubai, Doha, and Kuwait City, the original Em Sherif takes diners on a culinary journey across the finest flavors of Lebanon. It’s got exceptional mezze (and perhaps the world’s airiest hummus), delicacies like kibbe nayyeh (a beef tartare of sorts), and expertly grilled meat and seafood platters. Despite the culinary perfection and flawless service, Em Sherif manages to stay unpretentious by hosting live music performances on weekend nights.

Em Sherif Sea Café

The newest restaurant in the Em Sherif empire, this location in the Zaitouna Bay Marina serves the same reliably delicious Lebanese food (traditional mezzes and fish) as the original outpost in a slightly more casual atmosphere.


Enab greets your senses with a mix of souvenirs from the past and the present. With an exquisitely designed interior that recalls the glamour of old-world Beirut and a menu that perfects traditional Lebanese dishes, Enab is a winning choice for a relaxed, yet sophisticated lunch. Named after the Arabic word for grape, this is is where you’ll want to order all the classic mezze, from hand-chopped tabbouleh salad to (of course) stuffed grape leaves. On a warm day, eat on the back terrace, a true oasis in hectic Beirut.


Head to Hamra, a popular nightlife district, to grab a bite at Ferdinand. This sophisticated gastropub has dim lighting, dark wooden fixtures, and boozy cocktails to match, with a staff just as warm and inviting as the ambience. Go big on well-executed comfort items like brisket bao buns, truffle fries, and a burger with blueberry jam, bacon, and cheddar. You won’t soon forget it.

Hanna Mitri

At Hanna Mitri, be prepared to indulge in the best ice cream in Beirut—maybe even the world. Founder Hanna Mitri has been freshly churning bouza, Arabic-style ice cream that has a satisfying stretchiness to it, for over 60 years. This hole-in-the-wall ice cream parlor is a sweet-tooth landmark for visitors and locals alike who’ve fallen in love with flavors like apricot paste, caramel croquant, and rose water.

Hotel Albergo Rooftop

The Hotel Albergo has a charming rooftop restaurant with views over the city and lantern-lit tables. Have a drink in the charming upper floor bar that was decorated by Jacques Garcia, with a 1930s colonial vibe, and then head up the stairs to eat under the stars.

Joseph Restaurant

There’s nothing at all fancy about Joseph Restaurant, a shawarma institution by Al Saydeh church in Sin el Fil, but that’s the point. A local favorite for its succulent beef and chicken pita sandwiches, the rotating spits of meat seem to call out your name. Glistening with just the right amount of fat and protein, it’s that special combination that give the shawarma here a standout flavor.

Unknown image


With an interior as glamorous as its clientele, Liza also hits it out of the park with its refined menu of classic Lebanese dishes. Highlights include kreidess bel arak (shrimp with fennel and tomatoes), fattit battenjane bel habak (eggplant and yogurt stew), and ashta (Lebanese rose water pastry cream) with grapefruit and hazelnut for dessert.

Editors' Picks

M. Sahyoun

Ask any local about M. Sahyoun and they’ll likely confirm its status as the best falafel in Beirut, maybe the world. Family-run since its opening in 1935, this tiny joint prides itself in selling one thing: its signature falafel sandwich. The vegetable fritters are crunchy without being greasy, tucked within a warm pita and appointed with parsley, radish and tahini sauce.

Unknown image


Tucked in a quiet corner of the buzzing Mar Mikhael neighborhood, Tawlet was founded by Kamal Mouzawak, creator of the country’s best-known farmer’s market, Souk el Tayeb. Possibly the most recommended restaurant in Beirut, Tawlet’s daily rotation of freshly prepared dishes, presented buffet-style, features regional recipes from women home cooks around the country. For a flat price, you can fill your plate with the spread du jour, presented by the chef-of-the-day herself. A holistic representation of a Lebanese family meal, the buffet also includes a separate section for desserts. The dining room is bright and airy, with hanging plants and a section of artisanal products for purchase.

Editors' Picks

The Gathering

Anchored by a majestic olive tree within a shared courtyard, The Gathering is comprised of three distinct restaurant concepts: an Italian cantina, a bar/cellar, and a grill house, each situated within stately 18th-century houses. Tucked away from busy Rue Pasteur, The Gathering is a wonderful al fresco meeting point with plenty of outdoor space that’s exclusively non-smoking, a rarity in Beirut.

All Results


Indagare employees walking up stiars

Enjoy 30 Days On Us!

Start your Self Planner
membership trial today.

Unlock access to 2,000+ first-hand hotel reviews, 300+ Destination Guides and the most up-to-date travel news and inspiration.

Already a member?

Welcome back,
log in to Indagare

Not a member?

Forgot Password

Enter your email and we’ll send you a link to reset your password.

Type the first 3 letters to begin