Project Description

In Tel Aviv, there are way too many bars, restaurants, and shops that have hilarious translations from Hebrew to English. Here’s a list of places in Tel Aviv that are sure to make you laugh.

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1. Minzar – מנזר

Photo courtesy of Minzar Bar.

This bar name can meet two things. First, there’s the literal translation: monastery.

And then there’s a slightly dirtier version. Did the owners make fools out us by combining the words מִין (meen), which means sex (like gender), and זָר (zar), which means foreign or strange.

We’ll let you be the judge.

Keywords to know: מִנְזָר (monastery)

Transliteration: meen-zar

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2. Rosa Parks – רוזה פארקס

Photo courtesy of Rosa Parks Bar.

This bar was named after American civil rights activist Rosa Parks, who famously refused to get up from her seat at the front of the bus. The average Israeli is pretty unfamiliar with her and her story, but oddly enough, it still is a Tel Aviv local hit.

Keywords to know: צֶדֶק חֶבְרָתִי (social justice)

Transliteration: tze-dek che-vrah-tee

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3. Par Derriere – פר דרייאר

Photo courtesy of Par Derriere.

French for “from behind,” the name of this bar would literally translate to מֵאֲחוֹרָה (meh-ah-kho-rah) in Hebrew. This romantic garden wine bar is located on the border of Jaffa and Tel Aviv. We’re still trying to figure out why it’s called that though…any ideas?

Keywords to know: בַּר יַיִן (wine bar)

Transliteration: bar ya-yeen

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3. Goodness – גודנס

Photo courtesy of Goodness.

This vegan restaurant clearly thinks highly of itself. Nonetheless, they’ll having you saying אִמָּא’לֶה (eemaleh) once you take a bite of their amazing vegan dishes.

Keywords to know: אִמָּא’לֶה (slang for “oh my goodness”)

Transliteration: ee-mah-leh

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4. Ozen Hashlishit – האוזן השלישית

Photo courtesy of Ozen Bar.

We’ve heard of the third eye, but what’s a third ear? The magic of this place is that it goes from a record shop during the day to cool dive bar at night.

Keywords to know: אוֹזֶן (ear)

Transliteration: oh-zen 

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6. Nehama Vahetzi – נחמה וחצי

Photo courtesy of Nechama Ve’Hetzi.

Literally meaning “consolation and a half” the name is a spin off of a Hebrew proverb חצי נחמה (cheh-tzee neh-chah-mah). In our opinion, there’s no going wrong eating here, with an unbeatable view of The Bima.

Keywords to know: חֵצִי נֶחָמָה (Israeli proverb meaning “If everyone’s doing something wrong, it’s only half as bad as everyone else did it too.”)

Transliteration: cheh-tzee neh-chah-mah 

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7. Metzitzim – מציצים

Photo courtesy of Metzitzim.

Named after the beach it’s located on, we hope no one’s actually “peeking” as the name suggests.

Keywords to know: חוֹף (beach)

Transliteration: chof

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8. OCD

Photo courtesy of OCD.

Yes that’s right…this bar is named after the Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, probably because guests are served all the same dishes all at the same time. Given the fact that famous Israeli chef Raz Rahav chooses the menu daily, we don’t think anyone is complaining.

Keywords to know: לְהִתְלוֹנֵן (to complain)

Transliteration: le-heet-lo-nen

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9. Zakaim – זכאים

Photo courtesy of Zakaim.

Feeling זַכַּאי, or “deserving”? Well you do deserve this amazing vegan menu whipped up by a famous Israeli chef. The food is so good even meat-eaters will walk away happy.

Keywords to know: טִבְעוֹנִי (vegan)

Transliteration: tee-voh-nee