(photo credit: Courtesy)
You go to some restaurants for the food; others, for the
Gzuztra falls into the second category.
Located right on
the oceanfront in Herzliya, you could hardly ask for a better view. The beach
and the waves beckon, and the sea air envelops you as you sit in the open
restaurant (it does have a roof, but that doesn’t stop the late-afternoon sun
from creeping in).
A central rounded bar is surrounded by stools, and
they are surrounded by both regular wooden tables and low versions with cushiony
seats. Wicker and white leather befit the beach feel.
cocktail menu completes the seaside scene.
On a recent afternoon, a
friend and I sat down at Gzuztra (which means “balcony”) for a meal. We
with cocktails: a “solara” and a “jellyfish,” both of which were
creative and extremely tasty. All the cocktails have ocean-inspired
We were briefed on the menu, which is composed of dishes that
compare in size to large appetizers, the idea being that each diner
orders a few
dishes to share (or to eat alone). At 2 p.m., a sushi menu becomes
never got a chance to try the sushi, but considering the rest of the
may be the way to go.
We sampled a total of seven different dishes, which
ranged in price from NIS 36 to NIS 42. Each was presented attractively
interesting plates. Unfortunately, the service was slow. We waited a
our food, and throughout the meal we began to wonder if we were being
intentionally, as numerous waiters passed by without offering to clear
plates or inquire whether we wanted anything else.
We tested the lamb
kebab and Cajun potato wedges (flavorful meat, possibly too rare; great
the goose liver (faint liver flavor, slightly sweet – skip the
and crumbly brioche); the grouper cigars with chreime for dipping
taste the fish, and the sauce wasn’t particularly spicy); the salmon
(fish was cooked perfectly, accompanying veggies were also cooked just
sauce was salty); the chicken gyoza (excellent choice, with a spicy soy
the side); the Asian chicken salad (decent option); and the
sirloin (terrible gray-colored meat topped with soggy pistachio crumbs
resembled soup powder mix).
The options and the presentation seemed very
familiar to me. Upon later inquiries, I discovered that the chef at
the same Eitan Mizrahi of E-Zugi, which is located in Tel Aviv’s
Strangely, the food at the hotel is a notch or two
For dessert, we tried an apple crumble (NIS 36) and banana spring
rolls (NIS 36). The crumble claimed to have marzipan in it, but as my
partner and I both dislike marzipan, we were glad to find no trace of it
It came with green apple sorbet, which was refreshing
and reminiscent of apple-flavored candy. The spring rolls tasted faintly
their supposed caramelized banana filling, and the nougat sauce was
nice, as was
the coconut sorbet that seemed almost marshmallowy. We finished off with
strawberry-passion fruit margarita-daiquiri combos which, like our first
cocktails, were out of this world.
The tagline at Gzuztra is “fun
But wouldn’t fun beach food be more akin to nachos? For those
seeking a relaxed, kosher, beachfront place to kick back with cocktails
sushi, Gzuztra will do just fine. It’s not that the food is bad – it’s
of sync with its location and price range.
For perfect culinary
execution, head elsewhere.Gzuztra, Ramat Yam 100, Herzliya, (09)