- Written by Buzzy Gordon
Italian Festival Underway at the Sheraton Tel Aviv
The Sheraton Tel Aviv, in partnership with the Embassy of Italy, the Italian Trade Agency and the Italian Cultural Institute, is celebrating Italian cuisine this month. Highlights of the festival include special dinners prepared by Italian celebrity Chef Max Mariola, evening cocktail hours, cooking classes and a food market.
The festival was launched on June 6, in the presence of H.E. Mr. Francesco Maria Talo’, Italy’s ambassador in Israel. At a cocktail reception featuring such Italian classics as the Bellini, the Rossini and the Aperol spritz, Ambassador Talo’ and Sheraton general manager Franco Vella welcomed members of the Italian diplomatic corps in Israel and journalists to the opening of the festival, which will run through June 30.
The festival’s inaugural dinner at Sheraton Tel Aviv’s signature restaurant, Olive Leaf, was a special four-course meal prepared by Chef Mariola, who will be cooking for the general public through June 9. His authentic Italian dishes will remain on the menu of the kosher restaurant through the end of the month.
Chef Mariola, a native of Rome, is the face of Italian cooking channel Gambero Rosso and hosts a popular cooking show on SKY TV. This is his first visit to Israel.
As part of the festival, Chef Mariola will teach a cooking class at the Sheraton on June 7. Another class at the hotel, also open to the general public, will be taught by Chef Michele Bozzetto of Olive Leaf on June 20.
In addition, the Sheraton Tel Aviv lobby will be the venue of an Italian food market from June 13-16. Imported kosher Italian foods -- pasta, olive oil, cheese, gelato and more -- as well as wine, will be on sale from 17:30.
Moreover, the Olive Leaf Terrace, overlooking the Mediterranean, will be open Sunday through Thursday throughout June, 17:00 – 22:30, for an evening apéritivo, featuring an Aperol and Campari bar and accompanied by small Italian bites.
Reservations for the Italian dinners at the Olive Leaf may be made at 03-5219300. Tickets for the cooking classes (NIS 150) may be ordered via phone at 03-5211122.
Photos by Silvia Golan
- Written by Silvia G Golan
Italian Festival at Sheraton Tel Aviv
During the month of June Sheraton Tel Aviv is partnering with the Embassy of Italy in Israel to celebrate Italian culinary. Festival highlights’ consists of special dinner prepared by Italian celebrity Chef Max Mariola, cooking classes with top Italian chefs and Italian food market at the hotel lobby.
Following Italy Republic Day (Festa della Repubblica), which is celebrated on June 2nd, Sheraton Tel Aviv in collaboration with Embassy of Italy in Israel, Italian Trade Agency and the Italian Cultural Institute will launch the Italian Festival starting June 6 until June 30.
The festival will be launched on June 6 at Sheraton Tel Aviv’s signature restaurant, Olive Leaf, featuring a special dinner prepared by Italian celebrity guest Chef, Max Mariola, and with guest of honor H.E Mr. Francesco Maria Talo’, Italian ambassador in Israel. This is Chef Mariola’s first time in Israel and he is coming especially for the festival. Chef Mariola has created delicious menus, which are based on fresh and kosher Italian products and offer authentic Italian dishes. He will cook at the Olive Leaf Restaurant on 6, 7, 8 and 9 of June, and his menus with signature dishes will be served at the restaurant until June 30. For reservation please call 03-5219300
As part of the festival two Italian cooking classes will take place:
June 7 with Chef Max Mariola
June 20 with Michele Bozzetto, Olive Leaf’s chef
Sheraton Tel Aviv lobby will host an Italian food market from 13 of June until 16 of June, featuring Italian goods such as: wine, pasta, olive oil, cheese, gelato and more. Open from 17:30.
The Olive Leaf Terrace, overlooking the Mediterranean will be open for an afternoon apéritivo featuring an Aperol and Campari bar accompanied by small Italian bites. Sunday –Thursday, 17:00 – 22:30.
Rock'n and Roll'n - Taglit-Birthright Israel Tel Aviv Week 23-26 May 2016
"It seemed like my second semester was never going to end, it has, and now I'm finally in Tel Aviv and loving it. I still cannot believe I'm surrounded by Jews, and learning about our advances in Israel here at Tel Aviv Week," said an enthusiastic college student from the US today.
Birthright Israel Tel Aviv week
5,000 Birthright Israel participants have taken over Tel Aviv this week for the Birthright Israel Tel Aviv week with the participation of Assi Azar, Galit Gutman, Assaf Granit, Ziv Koren, Motty Reiff, Talya Lavie and other Tel Aviv personalities
23-26 May 2016
Thousands of Birthright Israel participants are currently taking part in the Birthright Israel Tel Aviv Week by exploring contemporaryTel Aviv up-close and personal. Participants are learning Tel Aviv's history and contemporary culture by walking through its landmarks and meeting with leading figures of the Tel Aviv scene such as Assi Azar, Galit Gutman, Assaf Granit, Ziv Koren, Motty Reiff, Talya Lavi, Gil Hovav, Sahar Zangilevitch and more.
From today, May 23 through Thursday, May 26, the Birthright Israel Tel Aviv Week is allowing 5000 participants aged 18-26 to experience the central role Tel Aviv plays in shaping modern Israeli society and the impact it has had on the larger global community. The participants are exploring the fields of high-tech, fashion, culinary, art, dance, music, theater, photography and the energy that the city has to offer.
Every day of the week, participants are attending a number of different activities through the city. They are going through an improvisation workshop at the Habima National Theatre with Mayumana, meeting with leading personas in the startup, fashion, culinary and media world, enjoying Gordon Beach with watermelon, volleyball and backgammon, attending a dance workshop at Suzan Dellal Center, discovering Israeli food at the Carmel Market and more! In the evening, the participants are enjoying musical performances by the popular Israeli band Hatikvah 6 and Muki at Hatachana Station.
Gidi Mark, CEO of Birthright Israel said: "Since the project began 16 years ago, we have exposed Israel and its heritage to more than half a million young Jewish Adults from around the world.
As part of a new tradition, we are excited to launch the Birthright Israel week that will take place annually and introduces participants to modern Tel Aviv from hi-tech and innovation to the exciting music, arts, fashion and culinary scenes this city has to offer. This experience will further strengthen their personal connection and relationships with the country and its people".
30,000 young Jewish adults between the ages of 18 to 26 are set to take part on a 10-day educational trip with their peers this summer season. Participants from 59 countries are joining more than 500,000 alumni who have participated on Birthright Israel since its inception 16 years ago. In addition to the Israeli landmarks, participants will visit Birthright Israel’s State of Mind- Innovation Center in cooperation with Tel-Aviv Stock Exchange. Taglit participants will visit an exhibition showing the history of Israeli innovation. Participants will meet with Israeli entrepreneurs who will present their personal stories and how they manifest the entrepreneurial spirit of Israel. The center will highlight all fields of Israeli innovation, including mobile technologies, life science, education, clean tech, smart cities, cyber, digital tourism and more.
About the Birthright Israel Project
Birthright Israel connects young Jews to the State of Israel as well as to their Jewish identity through a free ten-day educational tour of the country. Over the past 16 years, Birthright Israel has opened the eyes of hundreds of thousands of trip participants to the people and land of Israel. The trip aims to build an understanding, friendship, and lasting bond with the land and people of Israel and to reinforce the solidarity of the Jewish people worldwide. This allows for the creation of new friendships between participants and Israelis as well as deepens their understanding of the country and the Jewish religion and connects participants to their Jewish heritage. Birthright Israel is considered the most successful and largest Zionist project in the Jewish world.
Birthright Israel has a unique, historical and innovative partnership between the Government of Israel, thousands of individual donors and private philanthropists, and Jewish communities around the world through the Jewish Federations of North America, Keren Hayesod and the Jewish Agency for Israel.
Since its inception in 1999, over 500,000 Jews from over 66 countries have participated in the free 10-day educational tour of Israel. Of these over 80,000 young Israeli soldiers and students have joined various groups on their tours.
Over the years, several studies have been conducted at Brandies University, located in the USA, demonstrating the lasting effect on Diaspora Jews when focusing on their Jewish identity, their connection to Israel and their ability to promote the country.
- Written by Jonathan Danilowitz
As the saying goes: “One man’s meat is another man’s poison”. Being a restaurant critic (which we are not!) can be dicey. But giving out suggestions for great international eateries to try – why not? Especially if the one we are suggesting is so good.
The name "patisserie" might be misleading. Although the baked goods, the cakes and other sweet delights feature strongly, there is a nice menu of savory dishes, salads and sandwiches too. And cocktails, wine and beer. A restaurant with choices for everyone, including at least three vegan dishes. The friendly but professional waitress told me that the menu will change slightly in about a month. I can't wait to go back and see what's new.
Everything we tried was simply delicious. And nicely presented too. Even though this is no five-star fancy place, the menu items are described attractively and you get what you order! No surprises. Even the bread, baked right there, is unusually yummy.
Gerald is run by a brother and sister team, Jonathan and Jennifer, Gerald’s children. The family immigrated to Israel in 1993 from the French-speaking part of Switzerland, where they had owned and run “La Gourmendine” patisserie. The traditions of regional Swiss cuisine are clear: aesthetics, comfort, cleanliness, polite service and traditional fresh Swiss food. The bistro features real Gruyere and buche cheese, pasta dishes the way the Italian Swiss do it, French-accented brioche and tapenade, and corned beef with German-Swiss know-how.
The restaurant is open daily from 07:30 to 21:00, except on Fridays when it closes at 16:00.
Good food and good service at sane prices. That combination is rare.
Tel : 03-5063135.
Photo Silvia Golan
- Written by Pamela Hickman
Aluma - an upmarket kosher meat restaurant recently opened in Jerusalem
On May 18th 2016, I visited “Aluma”, a recently opened chef restaurant at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Jerusalem. The name “Aluma” (Hebrew: “beam”) was chosen because of the uniquely tranquil lighting emanating from the restaurant’s elegant gold light fittings, only one feature of the restaurant’s splendid interior of soft grey and powder blue designed by Michael Azulay. Another point of interest is a textured grey feature wall. Azulay’s vision was inspired by the meeting of east and west, of classical and modern. Despite its intimate ambience, “Aluma” has seating for 100 people, with another 80 seats for al fresco dining on a balcony overlooking the hotel’s swimming pool and a panoramic view of Jerusalem. The VIP room, adorned with wall paintings, caters to 16 guests. Among the drinks available in the sparkling, well-stocked bar are wines from several top Israeli boutique wineries. “Aluma”, a meat restaurant, carries the Jerusalem Rabbinate’s “Kashrut Mehuderet” certification.
Internationally renowned chef Michael Katz has returned to his hometown to preside over the cooking at “Aluma”, which is already attracting a lot of people. His experience includes working at 2- and 3-star Michelin restaurants in Belgium, teaching at “Le Cordon Bleu” culinary school in London and serving as chef de cuisine in Jerusalem restaurants. For “Aluma”, Chef Michael Katz has put together a menu based on classical European cuisine with some influence of Israeli cooking.
Our meal began with fresh, crusty rolls served with eggplant-, beet- and pesto dips. For the first course, we then enjoyed a variety of salads – a gravlax-style cured trout salad with beets in a subtle horseradish cream; red tuna salad in a soya-ginger and wasabi sauce; beef carpaccio in aromatic oils with fennel and crisp parsley; the ceviche of the day – sea corvina with watermelon, peppers, ginger and herbs; the restaurant’s own cured sardines in oil, garlic and mild harissa and, finally, the most wonderful warm “sabich” (an Israeli filling served in pita bread, of Iraqi tradition) salad with roasted eggplant, tomatoes, chickpeas, tahini, harissa and crispy poached egg. We then tried two of the main courses – juicy, tender grilled entrecote steak flavoured with hollandaise sauce and garlic and served with beans and crispy potatoes, followed by beef filet medallions cooked to perfection in shallot- and red wine sauce. For his desserts, Chef Katz keeps a safe distance from pareve creams and other such unattractive toppings too often associated with the end of a meat meal. His desserts are sure to delight the restaurant’s guests: for example, tapioca-mango cream with forest fruits, caramelized pistachio nuts and mousse apricot; crêpe Madeleine filled with vanilla cream, orange zest and fragrant orange sauce; chocolate-espresso mousse served with cocoa crumble, forest fruit comfiture and chocolate sorbet; and, finally, what for me was the tour-de-force – pears cooked in wine and red raspberry syrup with cream of caramelized almonds.
The restaurant’s service is excellent (our waitress explained each dish to us), seating is comfortable and the ambience is delightful. Prices at “Aluma” are certainly not over the top for such excellent and lovingly prepared food.
ALUMA, Crowne Plaza Hotel, 1 HaAliya St., Jerusalem; Tel: 02-643755
Opening times: Sundays to Thursdays 12 noon to the last customer; Fridays 11:00 a.m. to two hours before the Sabbath; Saturdays from one hour after the Sabbath to the last customer