Debbest: June Foodie Roundup

I am pretty sure this is the busiest roundup I have written so far. With summer in full swing, new restaurants are opening up all over the country. As always, if you like this post, please share it with your friends and let me know what else you want to hear about.


Tourists are always looking for pre-pay kosher restaurants for Shabbat meals.  While some exist in cities around the world, the only option in Israel is in hotels, which is an expensive option. The owners of Carousela in Rehavia are trying to change that by opening Bab Al Yemen on Azza, which is open on Shabbat serving dairy food, following the rules of Shabbat and payment is made either in advance or after Shabbat.  They do not have an official kosher certification, but they will soon have private supervision from Avivit Rabi’a, an experienced kashrut supervisor. Friday night dinner costs NIS 70 and Shabbat lunch is either vegetarian Hamin (NIS 45) or Jachnun (NIS 36).

There is finally a place to get a good slice of pizza in the Jerusalem shuk! Craft Pizza opened a few weeks ago and serves pizza by the slice, with a great flavor and lovely sourdough base. As well as traditional options, they also other tasty toppings like grilled zucchini, beets, kalamata olives, pineapple and chili, and a great spicy salsa on the side. A slice of margarita is NIS 14.

Steakiat Hakirach has opened on Yafo, opposite the open-shuk. The traditional style grill restaurant serves a variety of skewers and other fresh meat on the grill, as well as shawarma, fresh salads and home-made, thin and crispy fries.

Sushibox (Mehadrin) has opened a branch in Mevaseret Zion serving sushi, stir-fry and cocktails. I am excited to try it as there are not enough good kosher sushi places in Jerusalem.

Mixi Salad Bar (Rabbanut) just opened in Sarona Market with a great selection of fresh vegetables, grains and toppings. The medium is NIS 38 and large is NIS 42, both include bread. They also serve toast for NIS 32.

Hadar Market has finally opened in Hadar Mall with 20 food stalls that include Teeras (flavored sweetcorn and baked potatoes); Tostada (meat toast); Bagel Café (Mehadrin); Spaghettini; Burgers Bar; Knafeh Ir David; Burekas; Pizza Pushka; HaSalatia (Badatz); Mexicana; Matilda Ice Cream, Fish and Chips and more. It is open until 10pm on weeknights and to 2am on Thursday and Saturday nights.

Mono Restobar, a Greek Tavern in Airport City, has recently become kosher. Traditional Greek dishes include Pargit, Veal Kebab and Vegetarian Souvlaki, Moussaka and Tarama.

Posa (Badatz) has opened in the industrial park in Yokneam. The street food restaurant is only open for lunch and serves pita filled with various options, such as chraime, Arais and chicken liver.

Gusto di Nonna (Mehadrin) is a local-style rustic Italian café in Mora, Lower Galilee near Karmiel, serving simple Italian dishes.

Azura Tel Aviv is now open in the evening and they have partnered with celebrity Chef Rafi Cohen, former owner of Raphael in the Dan Tel Aviv. Cohen has added some of his signature dishes to the menu, like his cigars, veal kebabs and his pistachio marzipan. Rafi Cohen and Azura owner, Elran Schrefler grew up together in Jerusalem and they are rumored to be opening a new restaurant together.

For those heading to Eilat this summer, check out Jasper 08, a new restaurant-bar in the Isrotel Agamim Hotel, jointly managed by Jasper Johns of Tel Aviv. The spacious lounge bar has a dairy bar menu and varied cocktails and drinks menu.

#eilat#pub #club#israel#photographer #photoshoot #jasper

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Bakshish in Jerusalem has closed after just a year in business, it is a shame as the place had potential but it was badly managed.

Not Kosher

The restaurant in Gan Haatzmaut in Jerusalem has changed ownership and is now an Italian restaurant called Tiamo. Although it is open for lunch, the restaurant is more of an evening destination and is open until 2am on weeknights and 3am at weekends, with a bar atmosphere in the late evening.

Rama’s Kitchen in Nataf is finally reopening after it was burnt down 18 months ago in a forest fire. The new restaurant is the same farm-to-table concept as the previous one but half the size it was before. Rama herself is in charge of the culinary side and her daughter Ella will manage the restaurant. For now, they are only open for private events but will open to the public sometime this summer.

French style restaurants and bars are opening all over the place, especially in Tel Aviv and Hotel de Ville is the newest offering on Dizengoff, where Café Michal used to be. The gastro bar is from the same owners as Bell Boy and 223. The menu includes French delicacies such as Smoked Tuna Croque Madam, Veal Sweetbread Croissant, Ratatouille Sandwich, Beef Tartare and French Charcuterie, as well as an interesting cocktail menu.

גבירותי ורבותי, Tartare de Ville

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Zada restaurant has opened in The Drisco Hotel, a member of the Leading Hotels of the World in a 19th-century building. The cuisine at Zada is inspired by the traditional meals cooked for the Sultans of the Ottoman Empire with modern and local influences.

Another French restaurant, Nizza, has opened where Luca e Lino once stood. The menu includes traditional food from the French city of Nice, like Salad Nicoise and Pissaladière, (focaccia style bread topped with anchovies and olives), as well as other dishes including zucchini flowers, rotisserie chicken, pasta arrabiata and 60-days aged prime rib.

The owners of Bar à Vin and Da Da & Da have opened Café Nordoy in Hotel Nordoy. The menu includes classic European food, like beef tartare, oysters, cacio e pepe pasta and sirloin steak. For now, breakfast is for hotel guest only but it is open to the public for dinner

Anina Italian restaurant from Ramat Aviv has opened a second branch in Shuk Hazafon, serving pizza, pasta, meatballs and other Italian specials.

Faro Italian Eatery opened on the coastal road (kvish hahof – Route 2) in Bet Yanai, just north of Netanya serving pizzas with tomato or cream base, pasta, as well as fish and meat dishes. An Italian style Buffet brunch is served on Friday and Saturday 8:30 to 12:00.

Nanuchka closed at the end of June and The Bun in Carmel Market will close at the end of the year, but the owners will be opening something else in its place, but they have not yet announced what it will be.

Coming Soon 

Naya, a kosher Asian restaurant will soon open in Moshav Beit Nakofa in the Jerusalem Hills. This restaurant is from the owners of Derech Hagefen in Moshav Beit Zayit.


Recent New and Updated Posts

  1. Debbest: Two Nights in Haifa
  2. Debbest: Kosher Sarona
  3. Debbest: Tasting Tour of the Shuk
  4. Debbest: Street Food in the Shuk

 To read previous monthly roundups, click here.


Debbest: Two Nights in Haifa

Last year, I had the pleasure of spending a few nights in the northern city of Haifa. Although I have written posts reviewing the hotel and restaurants, I thought it would be helpful to combine it all into one post as a guide of things to do during a short visit to Haifa.

As soon as we arrived, we headed straight for a food tour of Downtown Haifa with Jessica Halfin of Haifa Street Food Tours. She warned us to come hungry and the tour included delicious Turkish burekas, Arabic sweets, arak, wine, creamy hummus and vegan malabi. Click here to read the full post of our street food tour.

My friends stayed at the Carmella Boutique Hotel (Kosher), a charming hotel at the top of Mount Carmel, close to the Louis Promenade. The restored historic building has just 19 beautifully decorated and spacious rooms. I particularly liked the separate shower and bath, with natural sunlight and nice toiletry products. The rooms also included a complimentary mini bar with soft drinks and beers, a Nespresso machine and small jars with biscuits, nuts and dried fruits. The hotel also has a Bleecker Bakery Cafe (Kosher) in the courtyard. We didn’t have a chance to try it but the setting looked very nice.

I stayed at the Bay Club Hotel (Kosher) located in central Haifa. Although the hotel itself is in a business area, it is a short walk to both the German Colony and Downtown Haifa. The hotel offered a free happy hour buffet at 6pm, as well as a delicious breakfast, in a tranquil conservatory. I thoroughly enjoyed my stay and would highly recommend it to anyone looking for a place in Haifa, here is a full review of the hotel.

Despite having already eaten all day on the food tour and hotel happy hour, we still managed to get through a tasting menu at Hanamal 24 (Not Kosher) in Downtown Haifa. Both the setting and menu have a European style and although we really enjoyed our meal, I don’t think it is ideal for tourists looking for a local experience, a full review of the restaurant is here.

The next morning, after a delicious breakfast, we headed for a walk on the Louis Promenade, with breathtaking views over the Bahai Gardens and Haifa Bay. You can visit parts of the Bahai Gardens on your own but in order to learn about the Bahai faith and to get the full impact of the 19 terraces, I would recommend a guided tour.  The free guided tours run at various times throughout the day in English, Hebrew and Russan (except Wednesdays) – check here for a timetable.

After a long day walking around the city, we went for an early dinner at Chang Ba (Not Kosher), a wonderfully authentic Thai food restaurant. The only challenge was deciding what to order, we wanted it all! After dinner, we wandered around the Downtown area, stopping at a few bars to soak in the atmosphere.

Chang Ba (Credit Avi Shumacher)

On our third day, we chose to explore some of the country-side around Haifa. We headed to Bet Lechem Haglilit where we first stopped at Derech Hatavlinim, an incredible spice factory surrounded by fields of herbs. Our next stop was Galili Olive Oil, a family-run olive oil business that uses a special ecological system from Tuscany to make olive oil without water. Finally, we went to Café Louise (Not Kosher) in Tivon for a fresh healthy meal before heading home.

Here is my first attempt at a travel vlog – it is very amateur and took me a year to edit but it gives an overview of the places we went.

There are so many other things to do in the area like The Clandestine Immigration and Naval Museum or a Druze cooking workshop in Daliat El Carmel with Galileat, both of which I am planning for my next visit in the area.

I hope this post is helpful for those planning a few nights in Haifa. If you like this post, please like, share and leave comments below.

Here is a list of posts about Haifa:

May Foodie Roundup

Each month when I come to prepare this newsletter I am always surprised at how much news there is. There seem to be some interesting openings this month, especially among kosher restaurants. As always, I would love to hear your feedback and if you want to get ongoing updates, please follow me on Facebook and Instagram.


The Jerusalem shuk might be full of bars but most of them are no longer places that people over 30 want to hang out. So I am particularly excited by the opening of Samantha Jones Jerusalem and I hope it will provide a welcome alternative. Named after a character in Sex & the City – the concept is meant to be a bar run by women, with a kitchen that offers female chefs a comfortable place to work, but when I dropped in last week, the chef on duty was a man.  They still have a test menu with a variety of incredibly predictable dishes like beef carpaccio, burger and steak, so I hope that the food is good or that they will develop some more unique dishes soon.

Another potentially exciting addition to the Jerusalem kosher dining scene is Andalucia Cocktail Bar in Kikar Hamusica. It is being advertised as a tapas bar but the dishes are a mixture of Spanish and Middle Eastern and not traditional tapas dishes. For now, the menu is only available in Hebrew and all dishes are NIS 55.

Tel Aviv is also gaining a new Spanish kosher restaurant called Carmen. The owners are North African Jews who moved to Israel from Toulouse and the menu embraces dishes with Spanish, French and North African influences. The chef Maurice Avitan previously worked at Par Derriere and Idelson 10. Starters include grilled spleen and goose liver, while some of the main dishes on offer are Toulouse-style sausages with goose confit and a grilled Rossini burger with a slice of foie gras and wine sauce.

A new Georgian bar has opened in Be’er Sheva named after the Georgian national drink, Chacha. The menu includes various Georgian Hachpuri pastries such as the popular Acheroli filled with melted cheese, egg and butter; Lobio soup and of course lots of alcohol. The bar is Kosher with no hechsher.

Caphé Hanoi has opened a gluten-free and vegan café next door called Bowl & Juice. All dishes are NIS 45 and include hot Vietnamese and Chinese dishes, as well as Buddha bowls, acai bowls, vegan desserts, shakes and cold press juices.

Purple Rain for a Monday 💜

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The Sheraton Hotel in Tel Aviv has once again opened Veranda bar by Kyoto restaurant. The terrace overlooking the sea is open Wednesday and Thursday evenings and Friday and Saturday from 12pm until late.

Chef Meir Adoni has opened a second branch of his street food restaurant Dunya, in central Tel Aviv on Ben Yehuda. Traditional dishes include shawarma, arais, kubeh, sabich, burger and malabi.

Not Kosher

A new uber-cool restaurant has opened in Florentine called Kirkas.  The names of the dishes are all strange play on words but the food itself seems pretty mainstream, like fish ceviche, sweetbread salad and Jerusalem artichoke tortellini.

R2M Group (Brasserie, Coffee Bar and Hotel Montefiore) has opened Disco Tokyo in the Herzl 16 compound in Tel Aviv. The concept is not so much a traditional Japanese restaurant, rather a fun restaurant with a Japanese style, as well as many Korean dishes. Menu items include bao buns, beef in Agadashi sauce and Korean dumplings.

Captain Burger (originally from Jerusalem) has opened two new branches. The first is in Tel Aviv on Ibn Gvirol, where Wolfnights used to be, and the second in Hadera.

Café Popular recently opened in Jacob Samuel Hotel in north Tel Aviv, spread over two floors. As of now, only a bar with a dining menu is open on the lower floor, the bistro will open at a later stage and will serve breakfast, lunch and dinner. The restaurant is owned by four Tel Aviv restaurateurs and the kitchen is run by Chef Avi Bitton, former chef of Adora.

We’re speechless 😶

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Asia in the Yaffo flea market closed at the end of May, as did Ad Haetzem in Herzliya Pituach after 30 years of business. Ad Haetzem Express branches across Israel will remain in business, including a kosher branch in Raanana and the 12th branch will open in Herzliya Pituach, in place of the restaurant. This seems to be a trend with the move from old-school restaurants, in favor of high-end street food.

Other News and Events

Tel Aviv Cocktail Week takes place 27 May – 2 June 2018. Over 30 bars are taking part including The Norman, Imperial Craft Cocktail Bar, La Otra, Double Standard, and Tailor Made.

Eat TLV will be held in Charles Clore Park in Tel Aviv 29-31 May 2018. The event features food stands from some of Tel Aviv’s best restaurants and all dishes are up to NIS 35.

There will also be a Tel Aviv Cocktail Festival at Hatachana 6-7 June, 2018. Tickets are NIS 80 each and include 3 cocktails.

A new restaurant is opening in Kibbutz Ramat Rachel in Jerusalem called Ben Hamataim. It will be open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and it looks like it will be a coffee shop and a chef restaurant.

Recent Posts

  1. Hotel Review: A charming oasis in the heart of Haifa
  2. Debbest: Cafés and Diners open in Jerusalem on Shabbat
  3. YTK – 24 New Kosher Restaurant Updates from Israel – Q1 2018

To read previous monthly roundups, click here.

Hotel Review: A charming oasis in the heart of Haifa

Nestled in the heart of Haifa, in a protected historic building, sits the Bay Club Hotel, part of the ever-expanding Atlas chain.

The impressive building, which was originally a family home at the time of the Ottoman Empire and later housed the British Mandate police, is now a 52 room boutique hotel. The hotel has a regal art deco design with a nautical theme, accentuated by a calming blue and green color scheme.

We arrived just in time for the daily happy hour which is held in the restaurant with its peaceful conservatory.  As well as a selection of drinks, there was also a light dairy buffet and a free 15-minute massage from the hotel spa, which was so good, I decided to book a full treatment the next day.

The Shorashim Spa ( is housed in the lower level of the hotel and offers a wide range of holistic treatments tailored to one’s preference.  Yoav Lalum, the spa owner, gave me a wonderful massage that was both intense and relaxing at the same time.  The advantage of having a massage in a hotel is that you can go straight up to your room afterward and relax.

Click here for the full review in The Jerusalem Post

Credit: Nathan Dvir

Debbest: Cafés and Diners open in Jerusalem on Shabbat

It is a myth that there are not great places open to eat on Saturday / Shabbat in Jerusalem, you just have to know where to find them.  The order of this list is based purely on my personal preference and is by no means all-inclusive but I would happy to hear your feedback.

Click here to read an earlier post about takeaway and fast food places open on Shabbat.

  1. Zuni

A cross between a diner and a brasserie, Zuni is probably Jerusalem’s only 24/7 restaurant with such a varied menu that there really is something for everyone.  Great for family meals, drinks with friends or sitting alone at the bar.  The menu includes traditional dishes like schnitzel, burgers and various sandwiches and salads but my favorite dishes are the Mac n Cheese and the Croque Madame with mushrooms (melted Emmental cheese sandwich, topped with fried eggs and parmesan). It is a fun option during the day and at night and Zuni delivers but orders are by phone only, full English menu on the website.

Zuni, 15 Yo’el Moshe Salomon Street, 02 625 7776

  1. R&R Diner

As with many places in Jerusalem, the hype is normally better than the reality.  The concept of an American diner in the center of Jerusalem is a good one and although it is nicely decorated, for me the restaurant lacks much atmosphere.  It is neither a diner or a bar.  The menu has a bit of everything and the quality of the food is good but nothing wowed me and all the dishes seem to lack something, so they are not fully authentic. If you are craving a Reuben or Philly Steak Sandwich, Mac & Cheese balls or southern fried chicken then give it a try. They also serve good coffee and the service is friendly and pretty attentive.

R&R Diner, 33 Yafo Street, 02 625 3435

  1. Menza

Although Menza is popular in the evening, I personally prefer the daytime menu including classic dishes like Eggs Benedict for breakfast and Milanesa Veal Schnitzel and Corned Beef Sandwich for lunch.

The bistro-style menu offers a pleasant balance of Mediterranean-inspired and continental crowd-pleasers executed at a gourmet level and creative concoctions that you’d expect at a high-end chef restaurant, as well as original and classic cocktails and wines for every budget.

Menza, 10 Bezalel Street, 02 625 5222

  1. Focaccia Bar

Somewhat of an institution among locals and tourists alike, Focaccia Bar is normally busy both Friday night and Saturday afternoon. The restaurant has an interesting layout with a large covered courtyard. The menu is varied with a number of traditional European and American dishes, as well as various middle-eastern options.

Focaccia Bar, 4 Rabbi Akiva Street, 02 625 6428 – full English menu

פוקצ'ה בצהריים.

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  1. Link

At one time Link was one of the few places open on Shabbat in Jerusalem and has stood up to a number of Haredi protests.  As with many bistros in Israel, the menu tries to offer something for everyone and is family friendly during the day, while offering a lively ambiance at night. The peaceful courtyard is a perfect place to hang out with friends and family and the inside sitting is nice for a more intimate option.

Link, 3 Ma’alot Street, 053 809 4510 – full English menu

Cocktails Time! #cocktails

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  1. Bolinat

Bolinat differs from many of the other places on this list as you will hear mostly Hebrew being spoken. I suspect that tourists and expats don’t know about it so I hope I am not exposing a local secret!

This wonderful pavement café is busy throughout the week, but especially at the weekend and is open 24/7. The young Israeli staff is friendly and helpful and the bar menu has a surprisingly great choice of snacks and main dishes.

Bolinat, 6 Dorot Rishonim Street, 02 624 9733

  1. Café Bezalel

During the week this tiny café is filled with students from the nearby Bezalel art school and at the weekend it is a popular café for locals to while away the day. The limited menu offers traditional Israel breakfast and shakshuka, as well as more unusual breakfast option like a croissant filled with Gouda and Croque Madame (served with smoked goose instead of bacon). The coffee is also really nice and strong!

Cafe Bezalel, 8 Bezalel Street, 02 625 9164

  1. Etz Café

Finding authentic French toast and pancakes is not an easy task in Jerusalem so it is not surprising that people go to Etz Café especially for those items. They even serve brunch options such as pancakes with poached eggs! The Gouda toast with coleslaw is also pretty good. Open 10am-5pm on Friday and 10am-7pm on Saturday.

Etz Cafe, 3 Yannai Street, 054 248 9178

  1. Karma

If you are looking for a change of scenery on Shabbat, then Ein Kerem is the perfect option. Be warned that all the places are very busy at the weekend so either book in advance or be prepared to wait.  Parking is also limited and parking fines are issued on Shabbat in Ein Kerem. There are a number of places to choose from but Karma always seems to be the most consistent both day and night. The menu is incredibly diverse and the castle-like building has a great terrace with a view over the scenic village.

Karma, 74 Ein Kerem Street, 02 643 6643

  1. Landwer Café, First Station

Although it is a chain, the food at Landwer Cafe is slightly better than most of the chains and the First Station branch is also a convenient option on Shabbat. The service is normally very good and they are also incredibly children friendly. As well as several menu options for breakfast, lunch and dinner, they also have a good salad and snack menu, which is perfect if you want to get out the house, but don’t want a heavy meal.

Landwer Cafe – David Remez 4, First Station, 02 587 7988

There are lots of other places all over the city including many in the Old City and East Jerusalem eg Austrian Hospice, Borderline & Pasha. Perhaps that will be a future post!

I am working on some other posts about where to eat in Jerusalem on Shabbat, but for now here are the current posts:

Don’t forget to follow this blog to receive automatic updates.

YTK – 24 New Kosher Restaurant Updates from Israel – Q1 2018

My debut article for Yeah That’s Kosher, features 24 New Kosher Restaurant Updates from Israel for Q1 2018. Click here to read the full article.

Look out for more updates in the months ahead.

Fillet Steak At 5th Avenue Eilat

April Foodie Roundup

I started a new job last month so I have not had as much time as usual to blog, but between Pesach and work events, I have still managed to eat some great meals. To see more photos from my culinary adventures, follow me on Instagram.


Sushi Kebab – east meets west in the Jerusalem shuk. I am not really tempted to try it but it seems to be more kebab in the shape of sushi, than sushi with meat.

Pita Basta opened in April 2018, in place of Fleishman in Sarona Market and the menu has a number of interesting pita options.  I tried the Heavy Pita (NIS 34 – not a typo, their play on words) which was grilled chicken liver, silan, lemon sauce, tahina and other delicious toppings. They also serve a dessert Pita Loti (NIS 10), a crispy grilled pita with nutty chocolate and banana – maybe next time!

Chicho in Sarona Market is now officially kosher. The meatballs always came from a central kosher kitchen but this branch was originally open on Shabbat. They recently decided to close on Shabbat and become certified kosher.

So now there are two great kosher meat options in Sarona Market.

Bastia by Chef Sharon Gabay in the Ra’anana Mall – dishes include freeneh with falafel, arais, and Arab dishes such as freekeh, root vegetables and meat, vegetarian stuffed dishes.

Racha Georgian restaurant is kosher once again.  The original Jerusalem branch was kosher, but it closed in 2016 and reopened in Tel Aviv non-kosher. Less than two years later, they have returned to their kosher status – with a menu, similar to the one they had in Jerusalem, with the addition of some of the dairy dishes, using tofu cheese.  I remember the food to be interesting and tasty, but the service to be temperamental.

Biga in Sarona Market has now become Mehadrin, just like Biga in the Fashion Mall.


Chef Raz Rahav of OCD has opened Barvazi Urban Sandwich in central Tel Aviv. Gourmet sandwiches include mac & cheese, baby rib croissant and pineapple and smoked labane.

סנדוויץ׳ – מאק אנד צ׳יז.

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Groneman 8  is a new café in Ramat Aviv with a selection of healthy sandwiches and gourmet pizza.

בוקר טוב עולם, מה שלום כולם? @gronemancaffe

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Other News

Mateh Yehuda Food Festival takes place over three weekends from April 27 to May 20, 2018. This rural food festival has been held for over 10 years and offers unique events to food and wine lovers.  The festival includes events at restaurants, wineries and private homes which are open throughout the year, as well as one-off events that take place only for this festival. All the information can be found in Hebrew on the website.

Recent Posts

 To read previous monthly roundups click here.

Bringing New Life to Eilat Kosher Dining

There was a time when Eilat had some of the best kosher restaurants in the country, but in recent years many of these places have closed, leaving mostly hotel restaurants that have served the same food for the last 10 years. Thus I was very excited to learn that some new kosher places have opened recently and took the opportunity to try 5th Avenue, a restaurant and cocktail bar that became kosher in February.

5th Avenue was opened a few years ago by Moran and Shlomo Amar. Even though they both grew up in traditional homes, having traveled everywhere and eaten everything, they opened a non-kosher restaurant to cater to the tastes of the local Eilat residents, as well as tourists. Over the years, their family has grown, and the couple has returned to their roots. They decided that they no longer wanted to work on Shabbat or serve non-kosher food in their restaurants. They sold their restaurant on the beach, which is still non-kosher, and 5th Avenue became kosher.

Together with chef Aviv Moshe, they developed a menu that would still keep their existing clients happy, while catering to new kosher clientele. Since becoming kosher, the restaurant has been in high demand for private events for both lunch and dinner.

Click here for the full review in The Jerusalem Post 

March Foodie Roundup

Out with the old and in with the new. While it is sad that some of my all-time favorites have recently closed, Roberg on Moshav Livnim and Café de Paris in Jerusalem, there are also some exciting new openings.  The trend for places becoming kosher continues.

Wishing everyone חג פסח שמח


The biggest news in the kosher culinary scene in Israel is the opening of Malka, the new restaurant by Chef Eyal Shani, where Liliyot used to be. It is definitely worth trying but there were quite a few issues when I went but they are still new so I will reserve final judgement for now; click here for my review and photos.

Arais Machneyuda has opened near Machaneh Yehudah. For those not familiar with Arais, they are pita pockets, filled with ground meat and toasted on a grill – yum!

שלמות בפיתה

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The owners of Tap & Tail cocktail bar in the Jerusalem shuk have opened a cocktail bar in the Koresh Hotel in the center of Jerusalem called The Curtain. If it is anything like the one in the shuk, it is a stretch to call it a cocktail bar but it is nice to have a new kosher bar option. – UPDATE – that was quick, it already closed!

#display #alcoholdisplay #theview #thecurtainbar #jerusalem #koresh צילם: שי עזרי

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BP Kosher Bistro from Haifa, has opened a second branch in Netanya and like many great restaurants in Israel, it is located in a gas station! It has opened just in time for Pesach ready for all the tourists.


Zakaim vegan restaurant in Tel Aviv has become kosher after a year in business.

Non Kosher

Wok to Walk has opened its first branch in Israel on Nachalat Binyamin in Tel Aviv and will soon open a branch in Sarona Market.

Or Ginsberg the winner of the 2016 TV show Game of Chefs has opened Selas in the Yafo flea market. The restaurant will only be open to the public on Tuesday and Friday. Each Tuesday there will be a guest chef who will host a fixed menu, together with Chef Ginsberg and on Friday, the restaurant will open with music and alcohol.

Captain Curry on Dizengoff has closed, just 10 months after it opened – the curse of Yonathan Roshfeld strikes again. The Sarona branch will continue with delivery.

Halutzim 3, Garrigue and Orna & Ella have all closed – after many years in business.

Other News

Chef Moshe Segev will be opening another kosher restaurant which will be a different concept from the other kosher restaurants that he recently opened in Beersheva and Netanya. Segev was quoted as saying that the new concept will be east meets west, and unlike any other restaurant in Israel, even the non-kosher ones.

Famous Jaffa restaurant Old Man and the Sea (Not Kosher) will open a younger sister, Sicilia  (Not Kosher) in early April.  Sicilia will open in the Jaffa port where the original restaurant used to be before the area flooded. They have not yet released the menu but the renovations include a taboon oven for pizza and the restaurant has space for 100s of diners.

Rothschild Allenby Market may be closing after just one year in business. Following the success of Shuk HaNamal, Sarona Market and Shuk Tzafon, the Rothschild Allenby Market should have also been a success, but on my first visit, it was clear that they are not the same.

Recent Posts

  1. Why is this year different from all other years?
  2. Café 65 offers a relaxing business lunch in a tranquil setting
  3. Gillis – The Ultimate Farm-To-Table Experience

To read previous monthly roundups, click here.

Why is this year different from all other years?

Pesach Jerusalem 2018

As Pesach approaches, people are usually focused on where they will be able to eat over Pesach.  I normally write a post about places I recommend, but when I sat down to write it this year, I realized that not only was my list pretty much the same as last year (click here for Pesach 2017) but also with a full week of Chol Hamoed, most places are actually going to be open this year so there is more choice than ever.

The only problem that leaves is where can to eat hametz on Thursday night! If you are uber organized like me, then you have booked a table at one of the few nice dairy restaurants that will be closed for Pesach like Anna, or at Cafe de Paris which is closing for good on Thursday.

If however, you have not yet booked something, here is a guide to places that will be open into the night on Thursday, for people to get their last fix of bread!

  • Ishtabach

Shamburak, the Kurdish Syrian pastry filled with meat and vegetables, baked in a stone oven and served with various homemade sauces and salads.  Fillings include Asian chicken (NIS 41), asado (NIS 45) and tongue (NIS 54) and there is also a vegetarian option and some salads on the menu.

Ishtabach (Mehadrin), 1 HaShikma Street, 02 623 2997 – English menu.

  • Hatch

What could be a better way to start Pesach than with a gourmet hot dog and craft beer? They have even created a special dish called “What Hillel Made”.

Hatch (Mehadrin), 28 HaEgoz Street, 02 679 6222.

  • Jachnun Bar

Whether you get a Shakshukalawach, Pizzalawach, chocolate filled Malawach or something else, Jachnun is the ultimate hametz indulgence.

Jachnun Bar (Kosher), 30 HaEgoz Street, 02 566 1919.

  • Pizzeria Flora

Delicious authentic Italian pizza with a crispy base, doughy crust and high-quality ingredients.  Toppings include fresh mozzarella, Italian tomato sauce, rocket/arugula, parmesan, artichoke, egg and zucchini and prices start from NIS 44.  They also serve a great Blue Cheese Salad (NIS 33) with a tangy citrus vinaigrette.

Pizzeria Flora (Dairy – No Hechsher), 2 HaDekel Street, 02 622 2216.

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  • Falafel Mullah

Everyone has their favorite falafel place, but my favorite is Falafel Mullah. As soon as you approach the stall, the friendly staff offer a fresh falafel to taste and if you just want a snack, there is always the option for half a pita.  The falafel is Gluten Free but the bread isn’t. Falafel in pita is NIS 15 and in laffa is NIS 18.

Falafel Mullah (Kosher), 82 Agripas Street (corner of Beit Yaacov), 052 843 6476.

Pepito’s will also be open Thursday night with arepas and Latin American sandwiches.

Random Other Pesach News

  • Pasta Basta will be opening for Pesach for the first time, with gluten-free, pesach pasta – with kitniyot. They will be closed all of Thursday and Friday.
  • Scala restaurant in The David Citadel Hotel is Mehadrin for Pesach – full review here.
  • Yonita Cafe in Nahalat Binyamin will be kosher for Pesach
  • If you are in Eilat for Pesach you have to go to 5th Avenue by Chef Aviv Moshe which serves delicious food and has a very cool vibe with a live DJ after 11pm. Karibu by Tel Aviv’s David Ve Yossef in the Queen of Sheba hotel has opened in place of Chicago. Both are kosher for Pesach with kitniyot.