I just spent ten amazing days traveling throughout Israel with my parents and younger sister, Jillian. Yes, there was a lot of sight-seeing, but, there was also lots of eating! The food was out-of-control delicious! Every meal we ate, we would say, "no, this is the best thing I've ever eaten." I set out to document all my bites and share the highlights.
Falafel & Friends In Jerusalem
During our first full day in Jerusalem, we were determined to find good falafel. We were strolling around the Mahane Yehuda Market and stumbled upon a hole-in-the-wall spot that was dishing out the goods: falafel (obviously), along with pita, hummus topped with lamb, hummus topped with mushrooms, a stuffed red pepper, a stuffed zucchini, a taste of bean soup and shared two diet cokes for balance. This was definitely one of the highlights of the trip.
Fresh Falafel In Tzfat
After spending the morning in the Banias, and subsequently hearing bombs from Hezbollah, we decided to go to the mystical city of Tzfat to regroup and have some lunch. We ended up finding a falafel stand, where we watched each little perfect little chickpea ball being made. Hot root vegetable soup and french fries were also involved. Note: this is what my family looks like while eating and feeling very cold at the top of a mountain. Hoods are essential.
Mediterranean Birthday At Suzana
For my Dad's birthday, we went to Suzana in the art gallery filled Tel Aviv neighborhood of Neve Tzedek. A couple of years ago, my sister and I had lunch there and were still talking about it. The following meal, we will now talk about for the next five years. We started with Rosé, fried cauliflower, string beans in tomato sauce, grilled eggplant topped with labne & feta, Jerusalem artichokes and falafel with tahini. For our main, my mother and I ordered fillet of bass with wild rice. Jillian had shrimp in olive oil, citrus & garlic, and my father had a red pepper stuffed with meat & rice. We ended the meal with chocolate mousse cake and tea with nana (mint) to help digest it all.
Seconds At Suzana
When the Scheinfeld's find something we like, we stick with it. A few days later, we ended up returning to Suzana for seconds. We started with the same sides, but for my main, I had salad with grilled vegetables, shredded feta & fried halloumi cheese. My dad had potato leek latkes, which were pretty damn special. We also had a visit from the cafe cat. For no particular reason, my mom named him Eddie. Suzana is officially my favorite restaurant in the world.
Tel Aviv Street Chicken
After walking a few miles to the Nachalat Binyamin Market, we were quite possibly a little hangry. My dad saw a sign for Kosher Chicken and the decision was quickly made. Exactly four minutes later, we were feasting on perfectly-spiced chicken, tomato onion salad, rice and roasted potatoes. When I have meals like this, I am reminded why I am no longer a vegetarian. Bless this dear, sweet chicken.
Tuna Salad At Bla Bla
While in Tel Aviv, we spent most of our time on the beach. A few steps away from our lounge chairs was Cafe Bla Bla. I am not ashamed to admit that I ate their salad with tuna and egg, five glorious times. I don't know what they put in that tuna, but, whatever it was, it had me coming back for more.
Breakfast For Dinner
Everyone knows, my favorite meal of the day is breakfast! Usually at home, I have breakfast-for-dinner at least twice a week. I was craving my usual, so Jillian and I went to Benedict, a 24-hour diner. We both ordered Israeli breakfast, which is eggs any-way-you-like with multiple sides; tuna, cheese, eggplant dip. I love eggs.
Rock The Casbah
One Saturday night, Jillian and I went out with Israeli friends in Florentin. The neighborhood has a Williamsburg-vibe and is quite fun. We enjoyed some shrimp with glass noodles at The Casbah, followed by a fair-amount of beer and pool at a local bar.
Tapas Worth Dancing For
On our second to last night, we checked out Tapas Ahad Haam as per recommendation of Jillian's friend. We were not disappointed after a meal full of Yaffo-style calamari, Turkish shrimps, scallops with black mushrooms, black rice paella, spare ribs and artichoke hearts with spicy labne. There may have been some vanilla ice cream involved. Due to a combination of happy taste buds, wine and soul music blaring over the speakers; we literally danced in our seats. After some deliberation, I've decided not to share the dance video.
'Cause We Have To Eat In-between Meals, Too
Worth noting: salted cashews from the hotel bar, chocolate milk in bed, crunchy cereal bites, soy cappucinos from Landwer Coffee, cake from Aroma on a random bench, and finding an almond tree during a hike in the Golan Heights.
I hope this post either made you hungry or want to visit Israel. Quite possibly, both.