With authentic Arabic and Eastern Mediterranean culture at the root of its concept, Moona, the newest endeavor for restaurateurs Mohamad El Zein formerly of Masa Restaurant Group and Radouan Ouassaidi of South End Pita, opens its doors on October 24th, 2016, in Cambridge’s Inman Square.
Located at 243 Hampshire Avenue in Cambridge, MA, Moona, slang for the Arabic word meaning “storing” or “pantry,” is a 30 seat Eastern Mediterranean-inspired restaurant that specializes in hot and cold mezzas (small plates) by integrating locally sourced seasonal ingredients with house made aromatic spices, dried herbs and jams.
In the past, especially in remote villages in the Arab World, the moona was prepared during the bountiful harvest for consumption during winter’s harsh days. The moona provided fundamental nourishment for the daily meal, and transformed perishable produce into food with a long shelf life. Today, Moona pays homage to this culinary tradition of purity and celebrates local food by incorporating their own house-made moona ingredients such as seasonal local apple marmalade and walnut stuffed pickled baby eggplant into each dish.
With a modern, rustic interior finished off with Mediterranean accents, the restaurant boasts a 10 seat bar and an intimate 20 seat dining room. Reminiscent of Arabic design, colors of bright blues, greens and whites are used throughout the space and are complemented by modern touches that include exposed brick and pipes, copper accents and mosaic tiling.
In addition to a highly evolving, seasonal menu, Moona’s bar will feature a carefully curated wine and craft beer list, with two seasonally rotating beers on draft. Additionally, house-made spice blends, jams, pickles and preserves will be available for purchase, and the team will offer monthly cooking classes that will focus on teaching Bostonian’s in the art of classic Eastern Mediterranean practices, such as making fresh cous cous and rolling grape leaves.
Dinner will be served seven days a week, Sunday to Thursday from 5PM to 10PM and Friday and Saturday from 5PM to 11PM. The bar will also be open seven days a week, Sunday to Thursday until 11PM and Friday and Saturday until 12AM.
For those that want to get a sneak peek of Moona, the restaurant is hosting a special 20% off friends and family event from Monday, October 17th, 2016 through Sunday, October 23rd, 2016. The restaurant will offer its full menu before it opens to the general public, and in exchange the bill will be 20% off for this limited time. For more information or to make a reservation please call Moona at (617) 945-7448 or visit www.moonarestaurant.com.