The best humous in Israel is a subject of great debate among Israelis, and those who have decided on their favorite hummusiya remain loyal to their chickpeas for life.

Abu Ismail’s humous does not disappoint an undecided voter. Muhammad Barbach and Khaled Abu Ismail’s family recipe, passed down through generations, involves a unique slowcooking method. The love and care put into the preparation are evident in the rich and delicate flavor of the humous.

Ordering humous with ful (cooked and mashed fava beans) served with olive oil, chopped parsley, onion, garlic and lemon juice (NIS 19); an Arabic salad (NIS 15); and the house humous (NIS 23), we had a fresh, hearty and authentic meal, all the while sitting in the contrastingly European-style indoor market of Jaffa Port.

We also sampled the delicate green Arabic felafel – a worthy accompaniment that was flavored with cilantro, parsley, garlic and sprinkled with sesame seeds (NIS 15).

No one will ever really know which place truly has the best humous in Israel, but for reasonably priced, authentic chickpeas in Jaffa, Abu Ismail is an excellent place to start.

The writer was a guest of the restaurant.

Humous Abu Ismail , Not kosher Jaffa Port Phone reservations: (03) 525-7476 Open daily from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.

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