Over the hill

for The Brooklyn Paper
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The Hill Diner in Cobble Hill has closed. In its place is Miriam, a spin-off of Refael Hasid’s eatery of the same name in Park Slope. The new Miriam, named for Hasid’s mother, is larger, and, he told GO Brooklyn, “even more beautiful than the first.” In a major makeover, Hasid installed a mahogany and copper bar lit with exotic Moroccan lamps, set in an intricate limestone and wood floor and added shimmering blue and green mosaics. While the setting has changed, the Middle Eastern menu — with a twist — stays the same.

“We’re continuing to tell our story,” Hasid said. “There’s just more of it now.”

From the dinner menu, braised short ribs crusted with fennel seeds and panko are served with sautéed Brussels sprouts and a raisin noodle kugel. New additions to the menu include the popular “Israeli breakfast” (fabulous, chewy pita bread, a yogurt cheese called “labaneh,” a chopped salad and two eggs prepared as you like them, pictured) as well as other morning and lunch items.

Another thing that one-ups the original Miriam: a full liquor license with sexy cocktails like the “Arak” martini, a potent mix of dry vermouth, “arak” (a spirit distilled from fermented coconut palm sap or a rice and molasses mash) and green olives.

You’d think that with all mom contributed to the restaurant, Hasid would leave her alone. But, no. “She came all the way from Israel to sew curtains and cushions for the new place,” he said fondly.

That’s some mother.

Miriam (229 Court St. between Baltic and Warren streets in Cobble Hill) accepts American Express, Discover, MasterCard and Visa. Entrees: $15–$19. The restaurant serves breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Brunch is available on weekends from 10 am to 4 pm. Subway: F to Bergen Street. www.miriamrestaurant.... For information call (718) 522-2220.

Updated 4:00 pm, November 10, 2010
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