Chef Idan Mendelovitch is expanding his empire of kosher sushi and Asian eateries to Ra’anana where he hopes the discriminating palates of people in and around the town will find what they are looking for in the new Maki Sushi restaurant.

This is the fourth restaurant Mendelovitch has opened in the last few years, but the first in the Sharon area. With two in the North – one in Haifa and one in Kiryat Haim – and another recently opened in the Ramat Poleg neighborhood in Netanya, the new venture, which opened its doors only a few weeks ago, is already drawing huge crowds from the surrounding hi-tech offices in Ra’anana’s industrial area.

Having visited the Kiryat Haim restaurant, and experienced chef Mendelevitch’s culinary genius first hand, when an invitation came in to try out the Ra’anana branch, it was accepted with alacrity.

Mendelovitch has years of experience in catering for very different types of diners. From two years of cooking for ultra-Orthodox yeshiva students, to four at one of the most popular health spas in the country to stints at top hotels and restaurants he has a wealth of experience to draw from.

With a Romanian father and a Kurdish mother, Mendelovitch has green eyes and dark hair testifying to his mixed ethnic heritage. He says as long as he can remember, he was in a kitchen, helping his mother and acquiring a life-long love of good food and how to produce it.

The brightly lit and cheerful restaurant boasts red varnished high chairs around a bar, and comfortable leather banquettes around the walls for people who want a more leisurely meal. The service is attentive and constant.

Japanese Sapporo Lager (NIS 24) was the beverage of choice for the evening and the bottles arrived at the table in champagne ice buckets, a nice touch. A Japanese cabbage salad, dressed with a piquant sweet sauce and topped with chopped peanuts was the first of a steady stream of food to arrive.

A large platter of sushi followed and these were as much a feast for the eye as the stomach. One cannot but marvel at the intricate labor-intensive method of assembling these little delicacies, with their fillings of spiced raw fish, matchstick carrot and cucumbers and the layers of rice and seaweed, all bound together in a tasty mouthful, enhanced by wasabi, ginger and two choices of soy sauce – regular, and low sodium.

A variation on the theme arrived in the shape of a sushi sandwich (NIS 32 – 37 for several pieces) another aesthetic presentation in which sushi rice is used instead of bread to encase the various fillings that can include, besides the fish, sweet potato, mushroom and spicy mayonnaise.

Next to arrive were bamboo steamers brimming with different colored dim sum – dough filled with a variety of meats and vegetables. The green ones signaled a filling of green vegetables, the orange had sweet potato filling and so on. Served piping hot and with a spicy sauce on the side, they were as good as they looked. (NIS 8 a piece).

For main courses we chose salmon on fried rice (NIS 89) and a chicken and beef stir-fry called “Dragon” on the menu (NIS 49 – 60). The salmon was thin and crispy, and although it was fried it was not the slightest bit greasy.

The stir-fry was tasty and chocked full of meat and chicken pieces.

The rice was delicious, full of chopped vegetables with a slight sweetness that we discovered was honey.

The chef insisted we have dessert and some little pancake-like rolls filled with apples and chocolate materialized on the table. These were fried, but absolutely greaseless and they were totally delicious (NIS 34).

Jasmine and green tea is available (NIS 16 – 18) as a finishing touch to a memorable meal.

The writer was a guest of the restaurant.

Kosher HaTa’asiya 5,Ra’anana.

09 8800440 Sun to Thursday, 9h.till 23 h.

Friday, 9h. till 15h.

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