Jimmy's Falafel Is Merivale's New Middle Eastern Restaurant on George Street
You'll find takeaway pitas at the front and $16 cocktails out the back at this bright orange CBD spot.
Merivale's latest George Street addition is already attracting (socially distant) crowds, which is, in part, thanks to the talents of Lebanese Australian Head Chef Simon Zalloua (The Collaroy, Rockpool).
Jimmy's Falafel was set to open back in March, but plans changed when COVID-19 restrictions came into place. Now, the Ivy Precinct eatery is open — for both takeaway and dine-in — slinging mezze-style share plates, $16 cocktails and pitas aplenty.
The Middle Eastern eatery boasts a late-night takeaway kiosk at the front and a lively bar at the back, both of which take design inspiration from kebab stores of the 1960s and 70s. The menu pulls influence from countries all across the region, including Egypt, Israel and Lebanon.
As the name suggests, falafel is the star of the show here. Zalloua spent weeks travelling across Lebanon researching his recipe, which he then perfected over about three months (and 50 kilograms) of trial and error. The rest of the takeaway menu is especially vegetable heavy, too, with pitas filled with za'atar cauliflower, eggplant and falafel varieties (all $15) — as well as a late-night edition with lamb kafta, sumac onions and toum.
Meanwhile, in the bar, share plates are the name of the game. Expect mezze dishes like slow-cooked beans, barbecued eggplant salad, harissa-spiced fries and cabbage rolls. Another specialty is the kibbe nayeh, a Lebanese dish of raw beef, bulgur, seven spices and toum (garlic sauce). Off the charcoal grill come more Middle Eastern dishes, including chicken shawarma, za'atar calamari with pistachio and lamb kafta with hummus and aleppo peppers.
For drinks, the wine list focuses on Lebanese and Greek drops, while the cocktail list offers six classics for just $16 a pop — including a spicy watermelon margarita, a rose old fashioned and a cobbler made using Havana Club rum, fino sherry, pomegranate and mint.
Jimmy's Falafel is part of Merivale's latest plan for the Ivy Precinct, which has also included the openings of Little Felix and Bar Totti's. For those who want to give Jimmy's a try but aren't prepared to brave the CBD crowds just yet, you can also order a box of the restaurant's best dishes for $95 via Merivale's new delivery platform.
Find Jimmy's Falafel at 312 George Street, Sydney from 11.30am–late Monday–Friday and 12pm–late Saturday.
Images: Nikki To
Published on July 14, 2020 by Marissa Ciampi