Located on Rechov Ben Sira, near Mamilla, there is a little hole in the wall hummus shop, appropriately named Ben Sira.
There aren't many seats in the restaurant, a few at the bar and a couple of tables with a few tables outside, until the weather gets bad. When you walk in you can smell the hummus and falafel and it smells great!
One of my favorite things about the hummus is that it comes to you still a little warm and the bring you warm pita, pickles, onions and tomatoes on the side. The texture is perfect. They serve a smooth, creamy hummus that has some whole chick peas on the top as well. At a very reasonable cost, you can also get a fresh side of Salat Israeli.
Not only that, but the meal also includes a few falafel balls. The most recent time I ate at Ben Sira, it took me a while to get to the falafel, so it was a little cold. The taste was still great though. Crunchy but not flakey, with a good mixture of seasoning.
You might be asking, "What is so exceptional about the hummus here?"
Well, aside from the hummus itself being very tasty and smooth, they put various toppings on the hummus. I have only ever had their Hummus Basar (Hummus with Meat). They take ground beef and brown it on a griddle. Then put it on top of the hummus adding another texture to the hummus. Off the top of my head, I know they have a mushroom one that is really good, so I've been told. Unfortunately I do not remember what some of the other ones are.
In the end, you get way too much food for just one person. Yeah, it is possible to finish off a bowl of it yourself. Or you can get the food lakakchat (to take away), and it keeps really well for a day or two. Instead, I like to bring a friend. Hummus and a salad is more than enough for a light lunch and it tastes fantastic! If you're headed towards Mamilla, headed in the direction of Ben Yehuda, or even making your way towards Yamin Moshe, Ben Sira is a good place to stop in for lunch. However, get your "Israeli attitude" ready. When it's busy, the space is cramped and you need to make it to the front to be served.
It's absolutely worth it.