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

Kosher

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.

#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.

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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.

זה החיים שלנו @preismansfoodphotography

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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.

Café 65 offers a relaxing business lunch in a tranquil setting

Business lunches are a great way to try high-end restaurants at a reduced price and are also a good opportunity for a working lunch. I have tried business lunches in a number of places in Tel Aviv, so I was excited to see how the lunch at Café 65 compared.

Café 65 is situated in the 65 Hotel, part of the Atlas Hotel chain, located at 65 Rothschild Boulevard. The café is in the hotel lobby, and there is a spacious patio overlooking the street. Although this is a busy area, sitting in the café was lovely and quiet, and the tables were spaced far enough apart to allow for private conversations.

As with many business lunches, the price of the main course included a starter and a soft drink. A colleague was my dining companion, and we have been to a number of business lunches in the area together. We both that the lunch at Café 65 was better value and higher quality than others we had tried recently. We appreciated that all the starters on the menu were included in the price of the lunch, unlike some places where they try to upsell you with starters that incur an extra cost. In addition to the eight main courses on the menu, there were three chef specials, which all sounded wonderful, but we both opted for dishes from the set menu.
Click here for the full review in The Jerusalem Post 

NOTE: Even though the main menu is just dairy, Cafe 65 is not kosher and they sometimes serve seafood specials.

Salmon Fillet Cafe 65 Credit Yonathan Ben Haim

The Ultimate Farm-To-Table Experience

Gillis Steak House is worth a special trip to the Golan.

I always have a certain degree of trepidation when revisiting a restaurant that was so wonderful on a previous visit, in case the reality does not live up to the memories. This was especially true for my return visit to Gillis Steak House, as not only had it been several years since my last visit, but I had also planned a three-day trip to the Golan to make sure that we would be there for the Thursday night meat feast at Gillis. Fortunately, not only did the meal not disappoint, but it exceeded my expectations and those of my dining companion, who had heard me rave about the place for years.

Gillis is a family-run meat business on Moshav Nov in the Golan. The Gillis family live and breathe beef. By day, they run a cattle farm and butcher shop; and on Thursday nights, they open their converted barn as a restaurant so that patrons can enjoy the high quality of their beef. The menu is a meat-lover’s paradise, with several meat dishes to choose from, as well as meat platters and two tasting menus for those who want to try the full selection of dishes on offer.

So much of the charm of the Gillis Steak House is the setting and the hospitality of the Gillis family. We arrived just after they opened at 6 p.m., and there were already four tables of diners seated. We sat with a view of most of the restaurant, witnessing the efficient service of the team of young local waitresses. A bottle of water and an appetizing starter appeared within minutes of our being seated, soon followed by the menu.

Click here for the full review in The Jerusalem Post

February Foodie Roundup

There are lots of updates this month so I will keep the intro short. I have changed the format to Kosher vs Not Kosher – please let me know in the comments below if this is helpful or if you prefer it to be ordered by location.

Kosher

There has been a lot of movement on Emek Refaim in Jerusalem recently.  Hayouka BaPita by Chef Aviram Hayouka opened in early December. Waffle Bar has officially closed down. Bagel Café (Mehadrin) has temporarily moved a few doors down while they renovate.  They are also due to open a branch in Kanyon Hadar. Aldo has moved from the small store next to Bagel Café – to the doomed corner of Rachel Imenu.

Netanya has had an explosion of new kosher restaurants.  A few months ago Chef Uri Arnold (owner/chef of Arnold’s) opened a meat Greek Tavern on the beach called Souvlaki. Now, Chef Moshe Segev has opened a second branch of his kosher restaurant called Moshe Segev.  This restaurant follows the opening of Segev’s first kosher restaurant in Beer Sheva a few months ago. The menu is only available in Hebrew.

Chocolate and gold # kosher שוקולד וזהב …

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Chef Meir Adoni has opened a new chain of Middle Eastern fast food restaurants, called Dunya.  The first branch opened in Ramat Hachayal in mid-February and eventually, Adoni aims to bring his food to the whole of Israel, including Nazareth and Rahat. The prices will be higher than most fast-food chains but all the dishes are designed by Adoni himself, using high-quality ingredients.

תכף פותחים בע"ה

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Atmosphera (Kosher) is a new grill restaurant in Ashdod.  The menu includes a selection of small tapas dishes, Mediterranean style starters, as well as fish and meat main courses, such as baby grouper, green seabass, asado on the bone, a burger with a selection of toppings and various steaks, here is the full English menu.

Babam (Kosher), Ashdod – the trend of smoked meat is spreading around the country and Ashdod is the latest city to open a smoked meat restaurant by Chef Eran Hessel. Items on the menu include hot smoked pastrami, asado, smoke entrecote, goose breast, smoked bone goulash soup and a smoked hamburger.

The Croladin is back for good.  Roladin’s version of the Cronut, is now going to be permanently on the menu and not just for Hanukah.  Fillings include coffee amaretto, pistachio, chocolate, crème patisserie and white chocolate.

ועכשיו בגרסה האפויה #קרולדין

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Chiripom by Chef Avi Levy has closed in Tel Aviv.  He has decided to focus all his time on his Jerusalem restaurant, Hamotzi.

Chef Aviv Moshe of Messa and Quattro has launched a kosher vegan catering service called Berry Fields. For more information, call 09 955 9544.

Luciana has opened a new branch in Modiin.  The decor looks beautiful, but I hope that the food and service are more like the original Emek Refaim branch than the Mamilla branch.

יופי זה לא הכל בחיים אבל מי מאיתנו יתנגד

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Eilat has two new kosher restaurants: 5th Avenue by Chef Aviv Moshe is newly kosher and Karibu by Tel Aviv’s David Ve Yossef has opened in the Queen of Sheba hotel, in place of Chicago.

Click here to read my full review of the new Scala restaurant in The David Citadel Hotel.

Not Kosher

After 16 years in business, Argentinian Chef Victor Gloger recently closed Chloelys restaurant in Ramat Gan and has now opened Hola Brasserie (Not Kosher) in the Dan Tel Aviv, where Rafael used to be.  The concept of the new modern European brasserie is to offer a less formal and less expensive menu. The menu features dishes like Tuna Tataki (NIS 56), Pizza Beets & Blue Cheese (NIS 69), Seafood Paella for two (NIS 195). There is also a smoking bar called Barola, with an extensive wine and cocktail menu and bar food. The kosher branch of Chloelys (Kosher) in the Hilton Tel Aviv will remain open.

Chef Omer Miller, the owner of the popular burger chain Susu & Sons (Not Kosher), has opened a pizzeria on Rothschild in Tel Aviv, called Sabba & 300 Rabbits (Not Kosher). Unusual pizza toppings include carrot, pumpkin, pasta, pancetta, osso buco, jalapeno and shredded short rib. They also have a number of sweet toppings for dessert pizzas.

Coming Soon

Since Liliyot closed for renovations a few months ago, we have been waiting to hear what the big update will be, well it is even more exciting than expected.  The new Liliyot restaurant will be Chef Eyal Shani’s first kosher restaurant in Israel.  Shani is one of Israel’s celebrity chefs, whose restaurants include, Port Said, North Abraxass, HaSalon and Romano (Not Kosher) in Tel Aviv and Miznon branches in Tel Aviv, Vienna, Melbourne, New York and a kosher branch in Paris.  Shani is most famous for his whole roasted cauliflower and his love of tomatoes. The restaurant will continue to hire at-risk youth and is due to open in early March.

Kosher restaurants by celebrity chefs are becoming a trend in Israel.  Chef Yoram Nitzan will be opening a new kosher restaurant in the David Intercontinental hotel.  Nitzan spent 20 years as the chef of Mul Yam specializing in seafood, until it burnt down in July 2015.  He was also the chef of Bindella Osteria which closed last year.

Recent Posts

  1. A Weekend Getaway in Haifa
  2. Scala Offers Authentic Jerusalem Food in a Hotel Surrounding
  3. Press Exposure for Restaurant Club Jerusalem and Israel
  4. Debbest: Shabbat in Jerusalem – Fast Food

 To read previous monthly roundups, click here.

A Weekend Getaway in Haifa

Despite being Israel’s third-largest city, Haifa is not always on the top of people’s places to visit and, having lived in Israel for 10 years, I have not spent much time there. So, when Jessica Halfin, the founder of Haifa Street Food Tours, approached me about spending a weekend in her beloved city, I jumped at the chance to discover its hidden charms.

Originally a baker, Jessica started offering food tours as a way to showcase the local culinary scene and to offer tourists an insight into Haifa’s diverse culture.

We started our tour in Konditoria Hamizrach in the Arab neighborhood of Wadi Nisnas, to sample some Arab sweets. This bakery has been run by the Mahroum family for over 35 years and is the offshoot of a larger bakery in Nazareth.

First, we tasted their homemade halva, which was softer and creamier than any I have had before. We also tried their traditional knafeh, made with cheese from Nablus and kadaif noodles from Nazareth, which differs from knafeh in Jerusalem, which is often made with semolina.
Our next stop was Burekas Turki M’Izmir in the downtown Turkish market area. Here the owner let us into his tiny kitchen to see how he stretched the dough to form the burekas before they are baked. As well as the typical potato and cheese burekas, we also devoured an Arabic cheese and fresh za’atar burekas, which is a local specialty. All the burekas were served perfectly with a sliced hardboiled egg, pickles and fresh tomato sauce and it is clear why this place is a popular hangout for students. We accompanied our burekas with some shots of Arnavim Arak, which is a local brand from Haifa marketed to young Israelis.As we wandered around the area, passing many interesting cafes and bars, we admired the murals and street art lining the narrow streets.

Our next stop was spontaneous, but the rows of Arak bottles seemed to beckon us in. Suidan Nehme seemed primarily to be an alcohol store, but also had shelves filled with produce from all over Europe that I have never seen anywhere else in Israel. The friendly owner invited us to drink a toast with him of Ramallah Distilleries Extra Fine Arak, and we also tasted the very rich Abu Salma Arabic coffee made by Nakhly in Shfaram, near Nazareth.
To build up an appetite, we climbed some of the many steps in Haifa away from the port and up to the business district. Our last stop was Hummus Bardichev (kosher), a family-run hummus restaurant that primarily services the surrounding office buildings. The owners have had a branch in the Carmel Center for a number of years and opened this second branch last year. One of the family spent a few years in Jerusalem eating at home-cooked restaurants like Azura in Mahaneh Yehuda and said he wanted to bring something similar to Haifa.

The hummus was warm and creamy and the pita bread fluffy and fresh. The menu included food from Iraq, Morocco and Libya, as well as some traditional Ashkenazi dishes. The highlights for us were the jug of fresh lemonade, which was perfectly thirst quenching and not too sweet, and the vegan malabi, made from coconut cream with candied pistachios on top.
We ended our tour with a glass of Tulip Espero 2015, a blend of syrah, merlot and cabernet franc. The Tulip winery in nearby Kfar Tikva not only produces an incredible range of wines, but is also home to adults with developmental and emotional disabilities, some of whom work in the winery. If you find yourself in the area, it is definitely worth a visit.

Later in the evening we met up again with Jessica to explore the downtown area by night. Although there are numerous bars to choose from, we were particularly curious to learn about the ones run by young secular Arabs. Impossible to find unless you are taken there, the entrance to Kabareet was hidden down a quiet dark alley, but just like an Aladdin’s cave, there were wonderful jewels within. The red painted walls of the cavelike bar and collection of mismatched, antique-looking furniture added character to this unusual establishment.

Kabareet (Credit Wisam Zoabi)

The barwoman who served us was Jewish and chose to work here to get to know her Arab neighbors and improve her Arabic.

It was a perfect opportunity to try another local Arak, this time a Golden Arak from Ramallah. Coming from Jerusalem, it was a refreshing change to see Jews and Arabs socializing so freely, and maybe it is a glimpse of things to come.

As spring approaches, Haifa is a good option for some time away.

Jessica Halfin’s tours are custom-built to client’s specific requirements. For more information: www.haifastreetfoodtours.com.

Click here to read the full article on The Jerusalem Post website or the PDF of the article.

Scala Offers Authentic Jerusalem Food in a Hotel Surrounding

The Scala restaurant in The David Citadel Hotel recently re-opened, having been closed for the last two years. The restaurant is off the hotel lounge, on the fourth floor of the hotel and the décor is similar to the overall style of the hotel. The previous restaurant was a fine-dining concept but the new restaurant serves traditional, Jerusalem food using modern techniques.  The hotel chef, Avi Turjeman, designed the menu to be simple and fresh, while offering authentic local food.

We started the meal with a small bowl of deliciously rich and flavorful meat and vegetable soup, which is a winter chef-special, complimentary to all diners.  Next, we ordered the mezze appetizers which are NIS 48 per platter and one platter was more than enough for three of us. The beautifully presented platter, included Warm Lupin Beans with Black Cumin, Smoked Eggplant, Tabouleh, Creamy Hummus with Warm Chickpeas, Crushed Tomato Dip with Green Chili, Tahina, Amba, Schug and wonderfully crispy Green Falafel.  My favorite part of the platter was the bread which was a light and fluffy, savory pancake-like flatbread with a similar texture to an English crumpet.  The bread worked perfectly dipped in the various sauces and wrapped around the falafel.

For the main course, I chose Veal Schnitzel (NIS 75), one of my favorite dishes and hard to find in Jerusalem.  It was a very generous portion and the dish was tasty, but I found the meat to be too thin, which meant that there was more coating than meat and the meat was slightly overcooked.  I also prefer for a veal schnitzel to be served in one large piece, rather than several small pieces.

Veal Schnitzel

I tasted both the Aged Beef Entrecote Skewer (NIS 55 per skewer) and the Pargit Skewer (NIS 48) which were both good but the chicken was my favorite of all the mains.  There is the option to order two skewers or to mix and match, but one skewer was enough for us, especially after the delicious starters.

Two skewers of Aged Entrecote and Pargit, with Grilled Vegetables

All the main courses are served with a vegetable salad and a choice of side dishes, which include Wheat Freekeh and Lentil Majadara, Basmati Rice or Potato and Sweet Potato Fries.  We tried one of each and the mixed fries were the winner, as they were well coated and we especially liked the purple potato variety.

We accompanied our meal with a glass of the house red wine, Teperberg Impression Cabernet Sauvignon (NIS 28/glass, NIS 110/bottle) which was light and fruity wine.

To finish the meal, we tried three of the four desserts on the menu, each cost NIS 35.   My favorite was the Safra Semolina and Coconut Cake, covered in a warm spiced syrup and served with lemon sorbet. The cake was not overly sweet, despite the syrup, and the lemon sorbet, topped with lemon rind, provided a perfect sharpness to the dish. 

The Fruit Salad was served with blanched almonds, mini meringues and topped with cassis sorbet.  The sorbet was wonderfully smooth and flavorful and the meringues and almonds provided a crunch to the fruity dessert.  Lastly, we had the Falooda ice cream with a marzipan and pistachio “cigar”.  The Persian ice cream, made from glass noodles and rose sugar, was not to my taste, but the cigar, which was drizzled with a warm spiced honey, was delicious.

When tourists come to Jerusalem, they want to try local food and too many of the good restaurants in Jerusalem serve everything but Israeli food.  It is refreshing to find a restaurant in a hotel that is finally giving tourists what they want. For Jerusalemites, it is also great to have a restaurant for special occasions that offers a three-course meat meal, with a glass of wine, for less than NIS 200/person.

Scala will be open for Pesach and the chef already has the menu planned.  This year, the whole hotel will be Mehadrin for Pesach only.

Scala Restaurant (Kosher), The David Citadel Hotel, 7 King David Street, Jerusalem, 02 621 2030. Full English Menu, Sunday – Thursday, 18:00-22:00. Parking validation included.

Press Exposure for Restaurant Club Jerusalem and Israel

Last week, I had the pleasure of being interviewed by Joanna Shebson of Fun In Jerusalem for Bite Size on the Nachum Segal Network. We talked about how and why Restaurant Club Jerusalem was first founded and the subsequent establishment of Restaurant Club Israel.  We discussed some new restaurant openings in Jerusalem and tips on family-friendly kosher eating around Israel.

Special mentions in the interview include Scala at The David Citadel HotelMemphis BurgerJacko’s StreetWaffle FactoryGillis Steak HouseHarvey’s Smokehouse, and Kitchen by Greg, Sarona.

The full interview is available here.

Debbest-Israel-Slider

Following on from that, I was interviewed by Ariel Dominique Hendelman for an article in The Jerusalem Post entitled “Living to Serve”, about restaurant service in Jerusalem and how certain restaurants stand-out for their level of service.  The article mentions the power of social media and the community aspect of Restaurant Club Jerusalem.

Ariel also interviewed Private Chef Bracha Arnold; James Oppenheim, co-owner of Crave; Joel Haber of Fun Joel’s Israel Tours and Chef Yankale Turjeman, owner of 1868, Zuta and JLM Sushi.

Here is a small extract from the article:

‘For Kandel, the best service in Jerusalem is found at Jacko’s Street near the Machane Yehuda market. She is not shy to rave about the kosher steakhouse and recommend it to Jews and non-Jews alike. Kandel admits that at this point, she knows the owners well and receives VIP treatment, but her admiration for them began a couple of years ago when someone posted in her Facebook group that they were unhappy with their experience at Jacko’s. One of the owners saw the poor review and called Kandel to ask her what she thought they should do. He then called the person and offered them a free meal if they would return, which they did. The subsequent experience was a much more positive one.

“Jacko’s knows that 50% of their customer base is Anglo,” Kandel says. “There are some places who don’t care about their Anglo customers because maybe the majority is Israeli. The other place that really gets it right is Machneyuda restaurant. The experience begins the minute you walk in the door. If for any reason, you’re kept waiting, they bring you something. It’s seamless. They know that the experience is not just about the food and very few restaurants here understand that.”’

Click here to read the full article.

Living to Serve - Snapshot.png

Debbest: Shabbat in Jerusalem – Fast Food

Where to eat in Jerusalem on Saturday/Shabbat is a commonly asked question, especially for first-time visitors.  Even though most of the city closes down on Friday afternoon, there are still plenty of good places to eat all over Jerusalem, you just have to know where they are.  I have decided to split the recommendations into three categories: fast food/takeaway, nighttime and daytime, as the recommendations for these categories are very different.  I am starting with fast food, as it is the easiest one, and the others will follow.

  1. Hasushia

As the only sushi restaurant in Jerusalem open on Shabbat, Hasushia is a popular option.  The restaurant itself is simple and small, with a stronger emphasis on takeaway and deliveries.  As well as the usual selection of sushi, the menu also includes dim sum, Asian soups, salads, noodles and other cooked foods.  Kids meals available are schnitzel and rice or chicken noodles.

Takeaway orders are ready for collection within 40 minutes and for orders over  NIS 50 there is a delivery charge of NIS 8-16 (depending on your location), deliveries take up to 90 minutes.  Online ordering is only in Hebrew (and I could not find an option to pay online), but telephone orders can usually be made in English. This branch serves seafood, meat and dairy together, but vegetarian and vegan dishes are available.

Hasushia, 12 Hillel Street, 02 633 5050

  1. Chili Pizza

Chili Pizza has been around for a several years and serves a traditional range of toppings to satisfy non-kosher consumers, such as ham and pineapple, pepperoni and cheese, bacon and eggs, and spicy beef and sweetcorn. Ready-made pizzas are available by the slice but the freshly made individual pizzas are much better.

The menu also includes some pasta dishes and desserts.  The full menu is online in English and deliveries can be ordered by phone, 11 am to 5 am, 7 days a week.

Chili Pizza, 28 Hillel Street, 02 625 4040

  1. Iwo’s Burger

Iwo’s Burger is a typical burger restaurant with American diner style booths.  The choice of burgers includes beef, veal, lamb or bacon, and among the more gourmet toppings are Emmental, Roquefort and Parmesan Cheese, Bacon, Goose Liver and Truffle Butter.  They also serve a selection of sandwiches and salads, as well as, sticky chicken wings and tater tops with cheese.

The full English menu is available on their website and there is also the option for ordering deliveries in English. Iwo Burger is open until 3am, 7 days a week.

Iwo’s Burger, 24 Hillel Street, 02 622 2513

  1. Domino’s Pizza

As well as the usual pizza selection, Domino’s Pizza also offers the chef pizzas by Asaf Granit, with gourmet toppings such as asparagus, mushroom, parmesan and truffle oil; spinach, cauliflower and pine nuts with an alfredo sauce; thin sliced beef, parmesan with fresh rocket; broccoli, salami, parmesan and roasted almonds, and more.

There is a choice of alternative pizza bases including whole wheat and gluten-free, as well as the option for vegan cheese.

Online ordering is only in Hebrew but telephone orders can usually be made in English.  Deliveries are normally received within 30 minutes or you can collect from your local branch.

Domino’s Pizza, 122 Herzl Boulevard; 1 Etsel Street; 25 Rivka Street, 1700 70 70 70

  1. Captain Burger

Unlike other burger places open on Shabbat, Captain Burger uses only kosher products and does not serve dairy.  Burger meals start at NIS 46 including a 110g burger and fries.  The burgers are not the best in the city but they still tasty and better than chains like McDonald’s. Online ordering is available in Hebrew.

Captain Burger, 4 David Remez Street, First Station, 02 671 9403

  1. P2

P2 serves real Italian thin-crust pizza in the heart of Jerusalem and they recently started selling gluten-free pizza. Other interesting dishes include Panzanella Salad, Calzone and Gnocchi. They do not have a menu online and do not deliver, but you can pre-order by phone for collection, if you know what you want.

P2, 36 Keren Hayesod, 02 563 5555

  1. Mian Noodles

A simple, authentic Asian noodle restaurant near the Old City, which offers five kinds of noodles: ramen, egg, spinach, carrot and rice noodles, with different types of meat and vegetarian toppings.

Mian Noodles, 22 King Solomon Street, 02 994 4333

Our special salad 🍲😋👌🏼

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  1. Aroma

The Hillel branch of Aroma is open 24/7, with a large seating area and free WiFi. The menu is similar to the kosher branches, but also includes a limited amount of meat dishes such as roast beef and chicken sandwiches and chicken salad. The full menu in English is available here and there is also a small branch of Aroma in Yes Planet, which is open on Shabbat.

Aroma, 18 Hillel Street, 02 625 5365; 4 Naomi Street, Yes Planet, 02 656 7787

Decisions decisions…

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  1. Jachnun Bar

For those who are not familiar with Yemenite food, Jachnun is a roll of Malawach pastry (fried flaky bread), which is traditionally cooked on a low heat and eaten on Shabbat morning by Yemenite Jews, with fresh tomato sauce, hard-boiled eggs and schug (spicy pepper and coriander paste).

Jachnun Bar also serves a variety Malawach options filled with salads and dips.  Stand out items include the Shakshukalawach, Pizzalawach, Malawach filled with shakshuka and chocolate filled Malawach.

All the food in the restaurant is vegetarian but as it is open 24/7, including Shabbat, it is not officially. Here is the full menu in English (page 2), they do not deliver.

Jachnun Bar, 28 Hillel Street, 02 566 1919

  1. Black Burger

Although the quality of the meat at Black Burger is superior to other chains, it is still a chain restaurant and the quality and service can vary greatly. It is, however, a great option for a group dinner but if you are going for a pre-movie meal, allow plenty of time, as this is not typical “fast-food” and they don’t do takeaway.

Deliveries are not available but you can call in advance for collecting takeaways. The menu is only available in Hebrew and they claim that all the meat is kosher but they do serve cheeseburgers and the mashed potato is dairy.

Black Burger, 4 Naomi Street, 02 930 9575

January Foodie Roundup

January has been a pretty wet and miserable month, which often prompts people to stay at home in the warmth, rather than eating out, but there are some exciting developments in the Israeli culinary scene this month.

Jerusalem 

Scala (Kosher) at The David Citadel Hotel has re-opened after many years of closure.  The original restaurant was a formal European style bistro but the new one seems to be a modern take on traditional Israeli food, click here for the menu.

Sweet’n Karem (Kosher) has opened a new kosher coffee shop in Ein Kerem with space for chocolate workshops.  The packaged chocolate has always been kosher, but the shop itself used to be open on Shabbat. The new café is the only kosher option available in Ein Kerem and includes seating in a scenic courtyard.

Sofia Restaurant in the Inbal Hotel has closed until May 2018 and the soup festival ended early, due to renovations in the hotel.

A new kosher Arais place is due to open in early March near the shuk, on Agripas opposite Mordoch.

Tel Aviv & Merkaz

Deli Fleishman (Kosher) has closed inside Sarona Market and is now across the road at 112 Derech Menachem Begin. In its place will be another kosher meat stand called Pita Basta (Kosher), who currently have a branch in Ashdod. Menu items include various meat and vegetarian options and most excitingly a chocolate and grilled banana pita.

Ludens Express (Kosher) vegan restaurant has opened in the Sarona complex.

Whiskey Bar Museum (Hashgacha Pratit) in Sarona has opened a cigar bar called Walter Bar at the back of the restaurant.

Etz Halimon (Mehadrin) is a new dairy restaurant in Hod Hasharon. As well as a traditional Israeli breakfast, menu items include Nicoise salad with seared tuna, burrata, gnocchi with chestnuts, parmesan and truffle and whole sea bass with roasted vegetables.

Greco, the popular Greek restaurant in Tel Aviv, has opened a second branch in Herzliya.

Με όρεξη – בתאבון! #ישגםמשלוחים

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Upcoming Events & Other News

So French So Food French culinary week will take place February 5-8, 2018 for a 6th year. A delegation of 18 French chefs will collaborate with restaurants all over Israel. Notable restaurants taking part in Tel Aviv are Shila, Popina, Oasis, Yaffo Tel Aviv and Olive Leaf (Kosher). Jerusalem restaurants include Cow on the Roof (Kosher), Mona, Mamilla Rooftop (Kosher).  Other restaurants around the country are Oratorio (Kosher) in Zichron Yaakov, Oud in Nazareth and Cramim in Beer Sheva.  Participating restaurants will feature special dishes made with the French chefs, for more information contact the restaurants directly.

A report on the recent A-Sham Arab Food Festival in Haifa – Food Festival Brings Jews And Arabs Together In Haifa.

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To read previous monthly roundups, click here.