Just because you find yourself in Israel on July 4, doesn't mean that
you can't celebrate US Independence Day. There are various places with
an American feel as well as specific events that are worth checking out if you want to get in the spirit. See our pick of some of the
best places to check out.
Last summer, a
new bakery opened on Dizengoff Street in Tel Aviv. The NOLA American
Bakery brings to Israel the best of classic American baked goods. NOLA
(an acronym of New Orleans, Louisiana) is the result of the hard work of
Talya Rasner, a young entrepreneur with a deep emotional connection to
American cooking and baking.
As a descendant of a Jewish immigrant family in the US originating
in Eastern Europe, she remembers the ﬂavors of this unique cuisine from
her childhood and is now proud to offer it in Israel.
Sternstein, an American pastry chef from New York, joins Rasner in her
new venture, where every day she prepares a tempting array of freshly
baked pastries, including brownies, cinnamon rolls, classic American
cheesecake, cupcakes and mufﬁns.
In addition to its well-known and popular pastries, NOLA prepares
specialty New Orleans style mufﬁns, including pecan pie, Mississippi mud
pie, Leah Jean’s munchies, Doberge cake, corn bread and sherry poppy
The first thing that comes to mind when you
think of Mike's Place is good food, free live music, great beer and an
"international" atmosphere. Mike's Place is that non-stop hangout we've
all come to love over the years. It seems that Mike's Place has been
around forever, and the story of its humble beginnings back in 1993
plays a big part in what makes this place such a success in Israel.
Today, Mike's Place has three locations in Israel: Jerusalem, Tel
Aviv, and Ramat Hayal. It all started in Jerusalem when Mike, a retired
photo-journalist opened a cozy little bar in downtown Jerusalem. The pub
had such a laid-back setting that people often mistook Mike's Place for
a private living room.
From its early days, Mike's Place attracted all sorts of individuals
from locals, travelers, foreign students, immigrants, diplomats,
soldiers, UN personnel, Arabs, Jews, and Christians. There was something
about Mike's Place that was the perfect setting for a fun, laid-back
atmosphere where people came together to talk, mingle, and watch sports
over a cup of beer.
Mike's Place was one of Jerusalem's best kept secrets, and was one
of the first bars in Israel to serve Guinness on tap creating much hype
and had customers lining up each night. Throughout the years, Mike's
Place has stayed true to its roots with a mix of live blues and
rock-and-roll, with no cover charge. The pub is open from the early
morning hours until the last customer, and offers a rich kosher menu
with a variety of American, Mexican and Italian dishes. Mike's Place
lives up to all international standards, with a selection of beers from
around the world, both on tap and in bottles, and a cocktail menu that
has a variety of drinks for everyone. If you're up until
later-than-usual-hours then stop on by at Mike's Place for Happy Hour;
who knows you might meet some friendly new faces.
Alicia Keys concert in Tel Aviv
American superstar Alicia Keys, one of
the leading musical artists of the last 10 years, will be performing in
Israel for the first time on the birthday of her country – July 4th.
winner of 14 Grammys will perform at the Nokia Center as part of her
Set the World on Fire tour in support of her new album, Girl on Fire. In
the decade since her 2001 debut – Songs in A Minor – Keys has
established herself as a premier singer/songwriter, capable of fiery
R&B, soul and artful piano ballads.
“I’m in love with this album,” said Keys in a statement released
before the show. “And I’m excited to go to new places on this tour,
among them Tel Aviv. I plan on bringing with me a show full of emotion
and inspiration. It’s a brand new me,” she added, referring to one of
the hits singles from the album.
American Embassy celebrations
For those not lucky enough to have
received an official invitation, beginning at 7 p.m., the US Embassy invites
people to view online all the excitement of the annual 4th of July
party, straight from the Residence of US Ambassador to Israel, Daniel
Viewers will get the chance to be there as guests arrive, see Dr. Eric
Huntsman sing the "Star-Spangled Banner," Hagit Yassu sing "Hatikva,"
and the US Ambassador, President Shimon Peres, and Prime Minister
Binyamin Netanyahu deliver their remarks.
Musical entertainment throughout the evening will be provided by an
ensemble from the Israeli Conservatory of Music and the US Military Band
The embassy encourages viewers to interact with them by sharing impressions of the night's events.
Rishon Letzion Symphony Orchestra
In honor of the
celebrations, the Rishon Letzion Symphony Orchestra is holding a special
concert, with American conductor Hampson Sisler.
The concert is a festive
composition celebrating Israeli and American songs – a work written in
memory of Ed Koch.
Audience members will be able to enjoy highlights such as Leonard
Bernstein’s prelude for “Candide” and “Four Fantasies on American Folk
Songs, by Douglas Townsend.