We went to Mezza in Livingston for the first time tonight. This restaurant is owned by the same owners as the one in Westwood. They have only been opened for a short period of time. The restaurant itself is beautiful, and the food was pretty good, but the service was very slow and amateurish. I was going to name my waitress Mrs. Houdini because she would disappear for 20 minutes at a time. I would guess the more established Mezza in Westwood has more professional service.
We started off with 3 appetizers. We had ‘crispy’ cauliflower with raisins, toasted pine nuts, scallions, and an herb infused tahini. It was pretty good, but I like the crunchy cauliflower at Mishmish better, although I did enjoy this presentation. This was more roasted than fried and crunchy.
We also had Israeli Fish tacos, with marinated branzino, Israeli salad, Jerusalem spiced yogurt, & dukkah, served on a crispy toasted pita. This was very good and was almost like a tostada. I like this taco version better than Mishmish, which is softer and harder to pick up.
Our last appetizer was the best one. We had Persian shrimp, with lime, zaatar, aromatic herbs, yogurt, turnips, and pomegranate. The sauce really complimented the shrimp very well.
For entrees, Mrs. P had the excellent sauteed crispy skin branzino with fingerling tomatoes, spinach, capers, olives, sherry wine, & lemon.
I had the braised Colorado Lamb shank with an excellent creamy orzo, garlicky spinach, and lamb jus. The creamy orzo was the hit of this dish.