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Messa restaurant and bar is one of the most legendary and award winning Chef Restaurants in Tel Aviv. Chef Aviv Moshe’s style of cuisine is based on French and Italian classic techniques and incorporates flavours and textures from the Middle East and Far East.
Messa restaurant and bar is located near Tel Aviv’s’ Cinematheque. The interior setting and contemporary design is elegant and inviting. The main dining area consists of two large communal tables creating a more open and sharing (family style) atmosphere as well several more intimate seating areas. The well-designed wine menu lists the world’s main wine regions with some great vintages.
The menu highlights some “classics” with a modern twist and interpretation. Starting with the interesting pan seared foie gras (Goose liver) served with a white "Valrhona" chocolate lemon sauce and a shot of "Sassy Chocolate". Other appetizers include the veal sweetbread with sweet potato tortellini, sunchocke (Jerusalem artichoke) cream and pearl onions as well Tofu Shawarma and sea fish sashimi Mesa style. Main courses range from European classics to more Middle Eastern influenced dishes. The pan fried sea bass fillets served with shallot ravioli and porcini foam is well prepared with balanced flavours. The full flavoured seafood couscous is delicious. Other main courses include lamb chops with veal sweet bread and cheek strudel with lemon fondue and gnocchi as well the Tornado Rossini with truffle cream and merlot broth.
The PSST! Before or after dinner have a drink at Messa’s bar just next door, adjunct to the restaurant.
Affiliated with the legendary, tastefully decorated and perfectly maintained Norman hotel, Dinings offers refined Japanese cuisine in perfect harmony with its understated elegant setting. The fish sashimi is presented on four porcelain spoons, inviting you to savor the fish with just the right amount of sauce while putting all the elements in your mouth at once. It is incredibly fresh and the sauces made from yuzu and garlic, and yuzu and ginger soy are very balanced. The salmon tataki rolls are coated in miso sauce and wrapped in watercress, giving them a fresh, crispy edge, without being overwhelming. The nigiri are served in sets of 4: salmon zuke with a drop of onion and soy jam, raw salmon, seared salmon belly with jalapeno salsa, and sea bass. No overpowering or fussy sauces all of which added an interesting angle and taste to the fish complimenting it well with a very subtle rice. For dessert we had the deconstructed yuzu cheese cake, which is very pleasant, not overly sweet, and obviously freshly prepared. The entire meal is extremely refined while giving the appearance of simplicity. The ingredients are magnified without excessive preparation. The presentation is very graphic and elegant with incredibly accurate flavors. The main element is always in control. This is a very nice place.
You are warmly welcomed in this hotel restaurant in search of a personality. The light is soft while the overall atmosphere is discreet. The dishes however are very colorful including a cod brochette with wakame seaweed and shimeji mushrooms or the sea bass filet with still crisp vegetables. Meat choices include a slices of roast duck on a sesame dried fruit chutney for a classic sweet and savory combination and a delicious very tender lamb dish combining chops, ribs and shoulder with a tasty, slightly caramelized lentil cassoulet, the texture of which blends harmoniously with tiny cubes of tender carrots. This is a truly attractive, delicious dish with its olive oil tuiles! Nomi has a lot of potential waiting to be developed: a menu offering a wide selection of meat dishes and local, seasonal products, a brigade of efficient waiters, and attractively presented dishes on a selection of dishware. We are hoping that the setting will be modernized to give it a bit more sparkle. We would like to come here both for the good food and also for a distinctive atmosphere along with a modern, more dynamic environment.
The restaurant Herbert Samuel, like the Hotel Carlton hosting it, is decorated with a sea theme including comfortable blue chairs, white horizontal slatted claustras, which set off intimate seating areas, and small touches of wood for a warm touch. The wine cellar is exposed on two wall panels with bottles that seem to be floating on transparent supports. The space, which features an open kitchen, offers a lovely volume. The meal starts with a very interesting creamy cauliflower soup, attractively spotted here and there with drops of olive oil. The beef tenderloin with foie gras is served Rossini style with a beautiful slice of seared foie gras, lovely beet cream and large quarters of organic beets. Crushed pistachios provide some interesting crunch. The dessert, Caribbean nemesis, bursts with ingredients including chocolate, passion fruit coulis, spicy ice cream, and banana caramel. The whole thing works astonishingly well, with the ice cream and coulis ending on a very refreshing note. This is a really excellent place with elegant service and decoration and most of all elegant cuisine.
The vibe is warm with a pretty personality, soft lighting and an elegant touch without being uptight, the service is courteous and welcoming. The skilled wine chef takes the time to explain the carefully designed excellent menu of Israeli wines, with lesser known vineyards and some lovely years. Angelica is the flagship of chef Marcus Gershowitz, with a thoughtful menu even if it does include a few American gimmicks. It blends, as is often the case in Israel, Mediterranean inspired cuisine with international trends. The seafood shawarma, black tehina, and radish vinaigrette has extra bite with a tasty homemade harissa, served in a charred onion skin. It is appetizing, very spicy and very refreshing. The beef tartar is made with excellent quality meat, and seasoned with fresh herbs. The charred eggplant gives it a slightly smoky flavor. Completed with a purée of black beans and a purée of Jerusalem artichokes, this starter has lots of personality and is fairly sophisticated. The perfectly cooked filet of beef is accompanied by a gratin dauphinois, while the lamb shoulder is stuffed with sweet potatoes and chard comes with cepe mushroom spaetzle. To end on a sweet note, don’t miss the very original, superbly presented lemon Eskimo, with a very good lemon cream, a tart raspberry coulis, and crumbled meringues.
Hasalon is open only two nights a week and you have to reserve long ahead of time. Indeed Chef Eyal Shani who has made this place nearly a private event continues to be as successful as ever. The open kitchen encourages communication with the clientele. And everything here contributes to the festive atmosphere including the loud music, joyful, dynamic staff, endless quantities of alcohol, and naturally the dishes ideal for sharing. Here you are likely to be a bit surprised by a banal green salad seasoned just right with the perfect degree of tartness, overjoyed by the creamy light sauce on pasta with zucchini, or impressed by a perfectly cut and exquisitely fresh tuna sashimi. The roasted grouper is seasoned with charred still incandescent sage, the tuna steak is juicy and tender, the excellent quality lamb is perfectly pink, and they have not forgotten that some people enjoy eating the fat which has not been trimmed from the chop. The menu plays on sensory experience, and theatrical service and cuisine but fundamentally what is of essence here is beautiful, very good food.
Meir Adoni offers a subtle, creative take on Middle Eastern traditional classics. Local flavors are distinctly honored including pistachios, rose water, eggplant, Persian lemon, lemon confit, harissa, Kadaif, and cardamom, among others. The dishes are blunder-free with some truly lovely discoveries including the Marrakech pan, a couscous with confit of duck, or the filet of veal cooked in coffee and cardamom. The fish dishes are also celebrated such as the very successful bass fillet and its black rice and root vegetable ragout with a Jerusalem artichoke cream that brings depth, lightness and a variety of textures. The portions are generous and we appreciate the elegant, unostentatious presentation. This is a high quality gastronomic dining experience in an understated setting with a lively open kitchen.
OCD is halfway between Yaffo and Tel-Aviv, in the Noga neighborhood which marks the border between Neve Tsedek and Shuk Hapishpishim. We are welcomed very professionally while the setting is very low-key and designed to draw attention to the kitchen overlooking the bar. The talented Raz Rahav accompanies us for two and a half hours of a gastronomic journey with some fifteen courses that will all surprise you, inform you, because everything is described in detail, and above all, delight you. Our experience included macaron made from carrot powder which crunches then melts in your mouth, a tart the crust of which is made of peas, stuffed with peas, smoked wheat and lemon which crunches and explodes in your mouth, a filet of raw amberjack, firm and delicate, with white strawberries, fresh almonds and a delicious tomato water, roasted duck with a tart, very pleasant clementine glaze…The combinations are unexpected while the preparations are original, the dishes are very attractive and finished, and the quality is consistently excellent. Raz Rahav is driven by his unceasing curiosity and desire to invent new culinary delicacies. Raz Rahav stays the course.
Topolopompo is an especially attractive, elegant, warm environment with extremely efficient service, a lovely wine menu and selection of sakes, and an extensive menu with a good balance of meat and fish dishes and of course vegetables. In short, it has a lot of assets. The inevitable cauliflower, simply grilled or roasted, is superbly presented, very bucolic with wonderful flavors of mint and basil and a lively lime seasoning. The Balinese sea bream is an excellent, skillfully prepared fish: with just the right proportion of fresh herbs to not overpower the fish, and delicious sauces with just the right amount of lemon. The yellow chicken curry is rich and flavorful. The tasty, tender chicken is marinated and cooked in the same sauce with lovely Asian overtones. Here the accent is on the decorum, whether in terms of restaurant design or the presentation of dishes. Inevitably, the latter inspire exclamations of surprise and contentment. Above all, the products are carefully selected, the combinations are original, the flavors are subtle, and the dishes are perfectly cooked. A meal here is a trip into a very creative “Conforti’s fire kitchen”, guided by the attentive staff.
Yafo-Tel Aviv is a popular and renowned culinary establishment in the city of Tel Aviv, overseen by the highly acclaimed Master Chef Haim Cohen, known by any food lover in Israel. The restaurant’s design reflects the menu and general line – on the one hand, a rough, urban up-to-date vibe; and on the other, nostalgic elements reminiscent of good old Tel Aviv. In addition, a big stone oven stands out at the center of the restaurant, indicating the culinary experience that awaits the diner. Indeed, it is a holistic experience featuring excellent service, an exceptional wine menu and dishes influenced by different phases of Cohen’s life – like his mother’s Middle Eastern kitchen, or his studies in France – made with fresh local ingredients. Kick off your meal with a hot focaccia fragrant of rosemary and glazed with olive oil, served with Har Bracha tahini. For a starter, order the Shoshbrak filled with labaneh cheese and hot yogurt sauce, with fresh hyssop Zaatar on the top; or ask for the nostalgic herring, served with sweet and soft challah bread, sour cream, tomatoes and green onions. For the main course, share the famous gnocchi with spinach and Hameiri cheese, or order one of the fish dishes, like the Labrax fillet, which is served with tomato sauce, vegetables and potato cream. Finish with something from the spectacular dessert menu offering the likes of vanilla and pear profiteroles in a variety of flavors and textures, Kanafeh for two and Pink Ballerina – raspberry crémeux, raspberry jelly, raspberry Chantilly and red fruits.
Award 2020 for the pastry chef (Shahar Peleg) of the year
Zepra is an immense restaurant with high ceilings and lots of cement that nevertheless manages to have a warm vibe with its monumental wooden claustra covering a whole wall, open lively kitchen and comfortable atmosphere. The atmosphere is joyful and very professional. The short wine selection is organized according to customers' supposed taste preferences : complex and elegant, powerful and modern, rich and intense in fruit aromas...There are also a number of sophisticated cocktails and delicate sake wines. The dishes are simply presented and sleek looking : a delicious iced, perfectly cooked caramelized salmon decorated with a single spray of proudly displayed germinated seeds . The cod is escorted by 6 drops of creamy sauce harmoniously presented on a white plate. The fish is irresistably cooked to perfection, the seasonings are delicate, the blend of flavours is subtle without ever neutralizing eachother. The Sishuan bar will delight those who like strong sensations : pimento, coriander, ginger, pepper...Absolutely don't miss the very beautiful, succulent desserts such as the autumnal Matcha Parfait with a delicate palette of green and multiple textures, the surprising Oranji Blossom with an unexpected flavor of bergamot, or Pineapple sushi with delicious palm honey.
There are some truly lovely, perfectly executed dishes but keep in mind that the prices are high.
On the top floor of the Carlton, the Blue Sky restaurant has an incredible view of the sea and the city to match the exceptional cuisine. In this modern yet warm setting, Meir Adoni one of the best chefs in Israel offers a menu showcasing Israeli and Mediterranean flavors (in the spirit of his previous restaurants Catit and Mizlala). In this Kosher restaurant, the menu is exclusively devoted to fish with options such as Andalusian tuna, grilled seabass or grouper fillet, along with vegetarian choices. The dishes are perfectly cooked and each one is a perfect combination of flavors and textures that highlight the delicacy of the fish. The varied, light desserts are outstanding. Another strength among the restaurants many assets is its diverse wine menu featuring an excellent selection of both Israeli and foreign wines. The service is flawless, from the manner in which we are greeted to how the dishes are explained. The staff is attentive without being invasive, friendly, and efficient. And to finish an exceptional evening, take in the breathtaking views from the terrace. Our parting impression is that we have been granted a unique, rare experience, one that deserves to be praised.
Award 2020 for the best service of the year
This year Chef David Biton offers us sublimely transformed local products: carefully sourced and modest regional ingredients, typical flavors of the terroir, herbs, and perfectly selected meat and fish. Try the tasting menu to discover his world: a consommé of smoked chicken which gradually releases its aromas throughout the tasting ; tomato “leather” with an exquisitely presented red tuna tartar, with yellow tomato espuma ; an incredibly talented, subtle lamb’s tongue with demi-glace sauce, with its earthy sweet flavored quenelle of Jerusalem artichokes and a very good cabbage and onion stew ; a breast of duck with an onion soup and ravioli filled with leek purée, a great surprise, modest, simple and yet full of flavors ; a filet of veal with garlic cream, or carrot cream and a leek fragrant with rosemary and laurel. The desserts are given the same level of attention: cake made with medjoul dates is both vegetal with its fresh leaves of lemon thyme and its Granny apple brunoise, and slightly musky thanks to the dates. With his flawless sense of balance and flavor combinations, perfectly controlled techniques, perfectionism that is close to obsessive, and impressive elegance , yes, this year David Biton delighted us : we love his earthy rooted cuisine, with its smoky and herbal notes. There is no flash here: only a great deal of technique, thought and talent.
Award 2020 for the chef of the year
George & John, located in the extremely refined Drisco boutique hotel, welcomes you elegantly. The Chef offers traditional cuisine with a personal touch featuring locally sourced products and skillfully used herbs and spices. The menu changes with the seasons. Here the seriola sashimi is served on an emulsion of blood orange juice, with horseradish leaves and Israeli caviar. The balance between sweet, savory and acidic flavors is lovely as is the contrast between the frankly crunchy horseradish leaves and the more subtle texture of the caviar grains. The pan-seared foie gras also plays on the sweet/savory range with an apple-pear combination and a very light vanilla aroma which works very well. The steak with shitake mushroom stew is a beautiful piece of perfectly cooked beef. And don’t miss the pasta with a delicate crab bisque. George & John is a very pretty place where you can also enjoy a very large brunch or tea on the shady terrace far from the hustle and bustle of the city. With a little luck, you can take in the fruit or vegetables being smoked in one of the three small terracotta ovens. The chef often favors this technique.
Award 2020 for the promising talent of the year