Chroniques

Recommendations and Deals: Israel

What would our vacation in Israel be if it weren’t served with a side of these delicious flavors and dishes, made not with milk and honey (unless it’s a Halavi restaurant serving dairy), but with love! During my last vacation in our wonderful country, I tested multiple restaurants just as much in a personal capacity with my little family as in a professional capacity during my mini book tour, when I had the good luck to meet some of you. I can confirm that since my return to the Big Apple, my taste buds keep remembering the dishes I sampled!

 

On the other hand, there’s just one thing–and no small one–that I noticed, I who hadn’t been back since 2016: the cost of living has really gone up. Look, this absolutely isn’t a criticism, but just an observation you need to take into account, because when you have to manage a vacation budget, it’s a good thing to know in advance. Don’t be like the Duke of Boulogne* (see explanation below) and myself, who arrived with the old prices in mind, and had to scale down our schedule and find activities for the kids that didn’t cost an arm and a leg (or several). I’ve given you an exclusive list of these deals right below my list of kosher restaurants.

 

Note from Junes Davis: The King of the World now prefers that we call him the Duke of Boulogne, so don’t be surprised if you see this nickname appear in my next publications! Thank you Booba and your airport brawl for the inspiration (your nickname, not the brawl, ok!), since Mika Davis was as it happens actually born in Boulogne.

 

That piece of news, which happened last week, is just unbelievable, and demonstrates real insecurity! While watching the video, I couldn’t stop repeating the same sentence I’d heard in Rabbi Jacob: But what are the police doing? Where is the police?

 

So we’ll start with Tel Aviv:

 

LEHEM VEHAVERIM:

Address: Bograshov 27, Tel-Aviv Yafo

Phone number: +972 35256611

Review: For a super nice brunch! But check the hours, the kitchen isn’t open continuously between 7 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Their pastries and bread give you the impression of being in a true French boulangerie.

Website: https://www.eatintlv.com/listing/lehem-vehaverim/

CHEZ RENDEZ-VOUS:

Address: Lilienblum 1, Neve Tzedek Quarter, Tel Aviv 6514631

Phone number: +972 35100057

Review: In the extremely charming neighborhood of Neve Tzedek, which is bursting with art, streetwear, and style stores for both home decorating and fashion. Don’t hesitate to take a walk all around, it’s really pretty. There are even a few waiters who speak French.

Website: http://802444292.d.zapweb.co.il/?utm_source=tripadvisor&utm_medium=referral

DON VITO:

Address: Lod Road, Or Yehuda, Israel.

Phone number: +072 1700503000

Review: A culinary gem! Really, it’s the best Italian I’ve ever had. Order the pasta of course, but also the grilled fish cooked to perfection.

Website: no website yet.

NINI HACHI SUSHI:

Address: 228 Ben Yehuda, Tel Aviv 6347323.

Phone number: +972 3-624-9228

Review: I don’t know if it’s the same NINA Sushi that’s in Paris, but there’s a strong resemblance. In any case, it’s excellent.  

Website: http://www.ninihachi.com/?utm_source=tripadvisor&utm_medium=referral

KANKI SUSHI:

Address: 23 Bograshov, Tel Aviv, Israel

Phone number: +972 3-600-7676

Review: The place to be! It’s as good as it is jam-packed. There’s a bit of a wait for a table, but their sushi is really good and fresh!

Website: http://kanki.rest.co.il/?utm_source=tripadvisor&utm_medium=referral

CHEZ DOMINIQUE:

Address: 11 Tuval, Ramat Gan 5252226, Israel

Phone number: +972 3-751-1144

Review: An Israeli atmosphere, really nice! If you’re not far on a Friday, hurry and grab their Halloth, which could make you melt with happiness.

Website: http://www.dominik.co.il/?utm_source=tripadvisor&utm_medium=referral

 

Herzliya

MINATO:

Address: Ha’menofim 8, Herzliya Pituah

Phone number: +972 9 7731703

Review: High-flying sushi restaurant! This really is a culinary adventure. For me, who’s 80% vegetarian, this restaurant is filled to the brim with exquisite kebabs and fish. You’ll find another of these restaurants in Caesarea at the Agenda Cafe in the Paz gas station.

Website: http://minato.co.il/?utm_source=tripadvisor&utm_medium=referral

SHIPUDEI TSIPORA:

Address: Bar Shaul 5, Tel Aviv, Israel

Phone number: +972 3-659-1432

Speciality: Grilling and barbecue.  

Review: For their kemia, which will knock you off your feet, their kebabs of all kinds, and their bread which is really delicious! Count on spending at least 22 shekels per person for the kemia.  

Website: They don’t have a website yet.

 

Rishon LeZion

The kosher McDonald’s! Woohoo!

Here’s a list of all the kosher McDonald’s in Israel: https://yeahthatskosher.com/2013/08/list-of-kosher-mcdonalds-in-israel/

Speciality: junk food, but my kids were delighted!

For groceries, you have Hetzi Hinam: 16, Halehai, Rishon LeZiyon, Israël

A supermarket as big as those you can find in the States, with good prices.  

 

Jerusalem

GOURMANDISES:

Address: Yo’el Moshe Salomon 10, Jérusalem 9526910, Israel! On Kikar Hamouzika square:

Phone number: +972 2-566-7222

Speciality: French.

Review: I strongly recommend this place as much for the adorable surroundings as for the menu. The portions are generous, and it’s very good. The owner is super welcoming and very nice! She hosted us royally during my book signings. The bonus are the French pastries for dessert and their crêpes.

Website: https://www.facebook.com/gourmandisesbyyoel/

PICOLINO:

Address: Yo’el Moshe Salomon St 12, Jerusalem, 9463312, Israel

Phone number: +972 2-624-4186

Speciality: Italian.

Review: A picturesque and really nice setting, their pizzas and salads are excellent and really fresh!

Website: http://www.piccolino.co.il/en/

DARNA:

Address: 3 Horkanos St. Jérusalem, 94235

Phone number: +972 624 4186

Speciality: Middle Eastern/Moroccan.

Review: Just incredibly good! You really feel like you’re in Ali Baba’s cave. Just one piece of advice: forget the appetizers which are expensive and not necessarily the best. Head straight for the entrees, and also order a sweet dessert with mint tea made with pine nuts, served in the Moroccan way we like. It’s a bit of an expensive night out, but definitely worth it.

Website: http://darna.co.il/pages/english/home_en.php

If you’re passing through Jerusalem and staying for Shabbat, I recommend that you eat at David Citadel which is just extraordinary for its choice! My recommendation: do just Friday night, not Saturday lunch, because it’ll run you about $135 a head, which is a pretty substantial cost. I’ve also tested the Dan hotel, which is more modest, but also very good. As with all Dans, by the way, which are known for being hotels where you eat very well.

 

 

The best deals:

Laser tag in Rishon Letzion: Laser City

Address: Aliyat ha-no’ar st 1, Rishon LeTsiyon, 7570647, Israel

Phone number: 00972 3-551-2277

Review: My children and husband adored the activity! Must be 4′ 6″ to play. Ask for Raphaël on my behalf.

The Dead Sea of course!

Mini Israel:

Address: Khativat 7 Junction Ayalon Valley, Latrun 9976200.

Phone number: +972 1-700-559-559

Website: http://www.minisrael.co.il/english-info-mini-israel/

Review: A crazy fun family outing! However, it’s not open before 5 p.m. because it’s very hot. Make sure to bring lots of water.

Rosh Hanikra:

Here’s the link to organize your family outing there. It’s a must-see at least once in your life. http://www.akko.org.il/fr/Le-site-touristique-de-Rosh-Hanikra

Friends, if you have other suggestions for kosher restaurants, that aren’t open on Shabbat, don’t hesitate to add them in the comments, and that way I can add them gradually.

 With lots of love.

Junes Davis

 

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