Nestled in the Armenian Quarter of the Old City Jerusalem you will find an odd door. The door sets a little lower than then rest and you have to duck your head as you wind down the steps into an eclectic collection of authentic lamps, pictures, hammered silver pieces, embroidery, tapestry and a huge wall mural with the eye of God watching over it all.
This door at first, provided a small alcove where you can literally jump out-of-the-way of the traffic that shares the old, uneven paving stones with the myriad of walkers, baby strollers, bicycles etc. It is one of the few places on earth you can find such a diverse group of orthodox Jews, Muslims, Americans, Asian, Africans, Europeans, Latin Americans: yes people from every continent come to the Holy Lands.
When you step into the dining area you are warmly greeted by a minority group called the Armenians. What a rich history these people share. They are Christians that survived a silent genocide that can be read on the tunnel walls in the Armenian Quarter of the Old City. The Promise, a 2017 movie, has just recently braved the political arena to tell the story of the senseless slaughter of the Armenians by the brutal Ottoman Empire. The Turks took the opportunity to unleash their hate in the shadows of the first World War and still today deny the atrocities ever took place. Even a the critical review of the NYT misses the mark… calling the characters muffled. This displays a clear ignorance of the artistic expression of the muffled cries of a suppressed and strangled story of blood shed among the peaceful innocent people born Armenian.
The Armenians continue to display warm hospitality as was always their nature. Nothing displays this better than an amazing dish they have called sinyeh! Sinyeh is an amazing combination of ground beef in a rich, thick sesame sauce with tomatoes, potatoes and more. This warm, rich stew-like dish is comfort food to the max. The pottery bowl against the wood tables served with a side of pita bread take you to a far away land with a far away dream. A dream to live in peace in the Middle East.
Worth your visit!
79 Armenian Patriarchate Road,