badolina 248 88.
(photo credit: Ezra Wanetik)
Recently, my husband and I took a "staycation" (thanks to Shanin B. for the term) to Tel Aviv. The term denotes taking a vacation while remaining in the same country of your residence. We were fortunate enough to have a friend offer up his apartment while he was away so we were able to experience the White City. In close proximity to the Tel Aviv Port, walking there was a pleasant option which we did a few times over the course of our stay. One evening we ventured out to find dinner and discovered Badolina.
The name Badolina, comes from a story of the same name that describes a magical kingdom in which each person can choose to be a master of their own life. The Sella sisters, Dana and Gal, have certainly contributed to that life goal by working diligently at these successful restaurants. The Port branch opened four years ago after establishing a name for itself two years prior in Gedera, where the patisserie delicacies are baked.
For starters, we shared the onion soup (NIS 31) which was by far the best I have had in Israel with its doughy lid topped with a slice of cheese. My dining partner had the very cheesy personal pizza (NIS 47 with up to three toppings) and I ordered the fettuccine with the creamy Badolina sauce (NIS 47), which is flavored with brandy and nuts. I did not find any nuts in the dish but the taste was markedly different and enjoyable and the pasta was perfectly al dente.
On the Friday morning of our departure back home, we enjoyed an ample and tasty breakfast. The seats nearest to the water were in demand so if that is your preference it is best to get there early. We sat inside and pored over the menu (available in English and Hebrew) to see what other dairy treats we could order in the future. Pasta dishes range from NIS 47-49, salads from NIS 48-54 with a smaller sized portion at only NIS 30, fish entrees, savory and sweet pastries, sandwiches, pizza and various fungi fun. They sure love their mushrooms.
Only breakfast is served on Friday due to the abbreviated hours but there were many choices. We opted for the pecan coffee pastry (NIS 17), a yellow cheese omelet with salad (NIS 47) and a health breakfast of granola, yogurt and fruit salad (NIS 42). Our meals included a hot and cold beverage. I took the opportunity to try the other teas.
There are five tea infusions (NIS 16) from which to choose. On our first visit I had the Green Diamond herbal mix with strawberry, saffron and green tea. With breakfast, we sipped the Limonello with lemon peel and forest berries and the Kir Royal with raspberry, hibiscus and rose.
Overall, Badolina is great service, ample portions, attractive presentation and attention to the little things. And of course, great taste.
Badolina's has two locations: HaBiluim 7, Gedera (08) 868-0463 and Yordei HaSira 2, Tel Aviv Port (03) 544-9449. The hours of the Port location are Sunday-Thursday 8:30 a.m.-midnight (with business lunch from 12noon-5), Friday 8:30 a.m.- 2 hrs. before the Sabbath and Saturday night from 1 hour after the Sabbath- midnight. Kosher. The writer was a guest of the restaurant.