A nod to nostalgia
At the trendy new Ascot cafe-bar in Tel Aviv, even the chopped liver is cool.
Ascot cafe-bar in Tel Aviv, even the chopped liver Photo: Courtesy
How do you turn a traditional Jewish dish such as chopped liver into a trendy
hit in this day and age? The owners of the new Ascot cafe-bar decided it was
time for the return of Jewish cuisine and are introducing it to their
fashionable young crowds in their trendy Tel Aviv establishment.
proprietors, a group of entrepreneurs who own a number of successful pubs and
night spots, felt it was time for them (as they have settled down and have
families) to open a daytime restaurant that also serves as a more grown-up bar
“We wanted a place for us, where we can spend time with our
families,” says one of the owners.
Located in what appears to be the best
location in the city – right at the end of Rothschild Boulevard – Ascot faces
the street and the newly renovated Habima Square, where families go for walks in
the afternoons, where all the social movement rallies start, and where most Tel
Avivians and tourists go for their evening stroll.
The idea behind the
place was a nostalgic one, aiming to bring back the intimate feel of Tel Aviv’s
early years, the simple elegance of the new pioneers who tried to create a
Jewish- European community in the young emerging state that had its own
philharmonic orchestra and theater, cafes and dance halls.
Most items at
Ascot are made in Israel – from the food, the coffee, the beer and wine to the
soundtrack, the waitresses’ uniforms and the decor.
Chef Sabina Valdman
brings back dishes that many Israelis grew up eating at home, such as the famous
Israeli breakfast, with eggs and salads, herring and yogurt and poppy seed buns.
There are makolet style breakfasts served on paper with a selection of cold cuts
and dark bread, interesting tapas dishes that are served with the drinks at
night, and now a selection of Jewish dishes such as chopped liver, stuffed
cabbage, and potato and egg salad with sardines served with halla.
six different beers on tap come from local boutique breweries, there are many
local wines from small wineries and even a few of the iconic types of alcohol
that are produced here, such as Sabra and 777 brandy.
Ascot also operates
as a cafe, where you can meet friends over coffee, read the morning paper, work
or simply engage in people-watching. You are bound to see a few local
celebrities walking their dogs, or at least some of Tel Aviv’s most attractive
The writer was a guest of the restaurant.
Ascot Cafe, 142
Rothschild’s Ave. (03) 6209969, Open from 9 a.m until last guests.