Debbest Dishes – August 2018

I love staying in Israel in the summer and luckily for me I had lots of family visiting this year, which provided the opportunity for some great meals out. Here are my favorite 10 dishes for August, in no particular order.

  1. Tuna Tataki @Naya Asian (Kosher), Beit Nekofa – beautifully presented with a lovely kick of chili. The service was very sporadic but the quality of the food and drinks was good.

  1. Fritto Misto (NIS 42) @Andalucia (Kosher), Jerusalem – we tried a few of the tapas dishes and this was the only one that stood out. The name is deceptive as it seemed to be just one fish but it was well cooked with a crunchy batter.
  1. Coconut Crème Brulée (NIS 25) @JLM Sushi/Auto Ochel (Kosher) – possibly the best parev crème brulée I have tried and even more impressive from a food truck.

  1. Goose Liver Carpaccio Brulée (NIS 79) @Meat Kitchen (Kosher), Tel Aviv – delicious starter with the perfect mix of salty and sweet, smooth and crunchy. Meat Kitchen is officially my favorite kosher restaurant in Tel Aviv.
  1. Red Tuna Tartare (NIS 64) @Meat Kitchen (Kosher), Tel Aviv – the dish came with fresh watermelon, lemon foam and watermelon granita, The chili was incredibly spicy but a good balance to the other ingredients.

  1. Four Cheese & Mushroom Pizza @Via Rustico Sarona Market (Not Kosher), Tel Aviv – the perfect crispy base and rich, creamy topping. The pizza is sold by the weight so you can have as much or as little as you want.
  1. Poached Eggs @The Setai Tel Aviv (Kosher) – I was not overly impressed by the breakfast buffet at The Setai but the poached eggs were well made and served on toasted brioche. The ice coffee was also great and the setting was very relaxing.

  1. Crispy Cheese Roll (NIS 28) @Waffle Factory (Kosher), Jerusalem – addictive cheesy bites served with sweet chili and garlic dip.

  1. Cod Goujons (NIS 32) and Red Tuna Goujons (NIS 47) @Fishenchips  (Kosher), Jerusalem – I have not been for ages and I was excited to discover that you can order the fish without the chips.

  1. Caramel Vegan Ice Cream @Aldo Zichron Yaakov (Not Kosher) – unlike other Aldo branches, they have a full vegan range of 13 flavors including 8 traditional ice-cream options made with almond milk – it was creamy and delicious.

I had a few other meals in August that didn’t qualify for this list but are worth mentioning:

  • Carmen (Kosher) Tel Aviv – a relatively new kosher French/Spanish restaurant.  Overall we thought the food was OK but there were execution issues with both the dishes I had and the prices are very high for the level of food and service. I will not be rushing back there.
  • Jaya Chef Restaurant (Kosher), The Setai Tel Aviv – the setting is beautiful, the service was great and the food was very nice but there is very little choice with only 4 starters and 5 mains to choose from. The restaurant holds the same name as the pan-Asian restaurant in The Setai Miami so hopefully, they plan to expand the menu in the future.
  • Manuela (Not Kosher), Zichron Yaakov – a really nice Italian restaurant set in a courtyard off the Midrachov. The fresh pasta and salads were delicious and it is a very kid-friendly option.

  • Elma Hotel (Kosher), Zichron Yaakov – the food itself at breakfast was very nice but the disorganization of the staff and the appalling service ruined the experience. You have to wait in line for both coffee and eggs and the buffet is not replenished unless you ask. There seemed to be lots of staff around but none of them knew what they were doing. Dinner in the evening at Oratorio was a buffet and not to the standard it once was.
  • Hameyasdim 16 (Kosher), Zichron Yaakov- the kosher options in Zichron are incredibly limited but this is a nice place for a quick and simple meat meal. The setting is very basic and is on the main road into Zichron but all that aside, the food and service were very good. Most of the food is cooked in a taboon and we enjoyed a number of tasty focaccia options and my entrecote was very well cooked and flavorful.

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