Restaurant Review: NOLA

An American bakery/restaurant that serves a diverse and well-executed menu.

April 24, 2015 09:42
2 minute read.
NOLA restaurant

NOLA restaurant. (photo credit: PR)

NOLA (an acronym for New Orleans, Louisiana) American Bakery on Tel Aviv’s bustling Dizengoff Street is officially my new favorite casual neighborhood place. Lacking any pretense, it embodies everything I could ask for in a go-to spot: a simple yet diverse and well-executed menu, friendly service and a chill vibe.

alia Rasner, NOLA’s owner, has earned a reputation in Tel Aviv for American southern-style family recipes. The difference is that at NOLA, every dish is made exactly how it is supposed to be and not an Israeli adaptation. That is probably why you will find a lot of American tourists, as well as Americans living in Tel Aviv at the restaurant whenever you go.

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Stepping inside, one is taken in by pastel green- and yellow-painted wood tables and chairs, birds of America wallpaper, black-and-white floor tiles and shelves with mason jars and oversized coffee mugs.

However, one’s eyes are immediately drawn to the baked goods, which are temptingly displayed behind glass next to the cash register. In the glass case, an alternating daily selection is featured, which includes such mouth-watering delights as various types of cupcakes, chocolate brownies, blondies, oatmeal-and-raisin cookies and chocolate chip cookies.

NOLA recently introduced a Cajun-style evening menu that’s chock full of appetizing treats. My dining partner and I decided to try a few items from that menu and the regular dinner menu.

We started off with the wheat salad (NIS 44), which consisted of wheat berries with grilled tomatoes, roasted peppers, cucumbers, feta sheep cheese and walnuts.

Everything in the salad was evenly mixed so that you could get a little of everything in every bite. The ingredients were fresh and of high quality. And the sweet balsamic and honey vinaigrette was phenomenal.

This was followed by a plain biscuit (or scone as we South Africans call it) with butter and jam (NIS 25). It was fluffy and melt-in-your-mouth delicious. Be careful when eating these, though, as you will get full very quickly.

Next up was NOLA’s famous macaroni and cheese (NIS 46). All I can say is “Holy macaroni, Batman!” When the bowl arrived at our table, I could only compare it to love at first sight. Baked with a slight crust on top, this dish was simply delightful. The creaminess of the cheese was like molten awesomeness or friendly hot lava that wraps you into a blanket of security. The cheese stuck to the macaroni like it should, and the macaroni was al dente. I will definitely order that again.

Although baking pies is not that difficult, there are some secrets and tricks you need to know if you want to bake a successful pie, and NOLA certainly has all of them up its sleeve. The farmers pie (NIS 52) had the perfect crust and was filled with delicious vegetables.

The desserts were delightful. From the many delicious options, we decided to try the peanut butter pie, the caramel cheesecake and some chocolate peppermint patties. All three were a perfect way to end the meal.

Overall, it was a delicious dinner. Everything we had was fresh, delicious and prepared with just the right amount of ingredients. Service was exceptional; the wait staff was constantly attentive to serving us water, and when a dish was finished, the plate was whisked off the table. A wonderful place for a date or a large group.

The writer was a guest of the restaurant.

Not Kosher
197 Dizengoff, Tel Aviv
Tel: (03) 523-0527

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