(photo credit: Courtesy)
The popular Italian chain of restaurants Spaghettim has opened the first kosher
meat branch in the country in the Bourse Building in Ramat Gan. In fact, it was
also the first kosher Spaghettim in Israel five years ago, but in its first
incarnation it was a dairy restaurant.
“It was the only kosher Spaghettim
in the world,” says owner Michel Dayan, who made aliya from France 14 years
Given its location near the Diamond Exchange, it made economic sense
to offer kosher food to the many observant people working in the
“Three months ago we decided to change over to a meat restaurant,”
says Dayan. “There was a huge demand from our regular customers, and we already
had a very large clientele.”
Since switching to meat cuisine only a month
ago, he is pleased with the results. For the chef, Barak Ashkenazi, it was a
challenge to produce classic Italian food without cheese, but he has created
some culinary magic – as we discovered recently when the restaurant invited
observant food writers to sample the wares. They called it a press conference,
but in fact it was a very impressive meal.
So in the company of several
besheiteled and black kippawearing journalists from the haredi press, we settled
down to enjoy our taste of Italy.
While inspecting the menu and trying to
pick something representative from the extensive choices, a bowl of piping hot
green pea soup appeared, which proved to be just the job on that cold rainy
night. It was just as it should be, texture and flavorwise – not too thick and
not too thin.
The soup of the day is NIS 24.
For my starter I
chose Bruschetta Funghi (NIS 26), which consists of bread toasted with olive
oil, smeared with a rich, creamy mushroom spread and topped with seared
Portobello and champignon mushrooms. It was served on brown paper and was
redolent with garlic and herbs, a delicious starter that tasted authentically
Italian. My companion picked the liver pâté (NIS 29) – two very thick slices of
creamy pâté served with pear confit, which he pronounced superb. You could
certainly taste the liver, but it felt too fatty to my palate. And no wonder.
Later, Dayan divulged that it was made with generous helpings of goose
For the main course, there are naturally many pasta and calzone
dishes, fish and salads from which to choose. We plumped for the meat offerings.
I had escalope in red wine sauce (NIS 59), which turned out to be chicken
breast, but it was very succulent, the sauce was rich and sweet, and it came
with fresh green beans saturated in garlic flavoring which was wonderful. My
husband had a large plate of osso bucco in thick brown gravy (NIS 79) and was
very happy with that.
Some of the people around were tucking in to thick
entrecote steaks (NIS 118); but a steak is a steak, and I felt I should
concentrate on the Italian aspect of the place.
About six different
desserts (NIS 25) were brought round on a tray so we could choose what most
appealed. I had the individual apple crumble – spicy moist apple chunks mixed
with raisins served with vanilla ice cream (parve, of course). My companion had
something chocolaty and gooey, which he said was very good.
excellent meal that isn’t going to bankrupt you, I highly recommend this
Thanks for becoming kosher! The writer was a guest of the
7 Abba Hillel St.