(photo credit: shai naiberg)
Stephan Brown is not the place to go to analyze the latest concoctions of the masters of haute cuisine. There is no extravaganza at the tables, no big plates with very little food and a lot of decoration, and no adventurous fusions of tastes.
Instead, there is simple, hearty, delicious food. This is precisely the place for anyone who is looking for excellent dishes prepared in a straightforward way from the best of ingredients.
It’s easy to miss the entrance to the restaurant. In the middle of Tel Aviv’s noisy, crowded Allenby Street, you walk past a piano store into a small garden – and like magic, you are no longer in a steamy city but in some romantic little hideaway somewhere in Italy.
The ocher walls and the windows, the trees and the small wooden porch provide patrons with a very pleasant break.
Inside, the walls are covered with old-style mirrors and photos of Mr.
Brown in the days when Tel Aviv was considered the Paris of the Mediterranean. The floors are painted, and the furniture is basic, simple, old bistro style.
You can choose to dine indoors in the main dining area or in the smokers area, or if ou feel romantic, in the small garden. Or you could sit at the bar for a totaly different experience.
As for the food, there are the reliable, no-nonsense grilled meats and traditional salads that never fail. One can choose from three business menus (NIS 73, NIS 77 or NIS 99) or order a la carte. The business menu is available all day.
We chose to start with a grilled vegetable dish that was really a tray with enough food for two and then some. But we didn’t know that, so we also ordered the gazpacho, which was served in a small bowl and was great. There are also other salads such as the eggplant, beet and carrot salad, but make sure not to miss the local version of the Israeli salad. Diced into tiny cubes, it was one of the best of its kind.
This is mainly a meat restaurant, but vegetarians will find many great dishes to choose from.
Stephan Brown is famous for its grillman, and rightly so. The guy knows
his meat. All the meat dishes are very good, but the best ones can be
found on the “sometimes” list on the menu. There are several intriguing
options on that menu, but If you go to Stephan Brown on a day that they
have lamb chops, order that dish before they run out.
That’s what my companion chose. Plenty of small and tender lamb chops
and filet of lamb on a plate with nothing else. The meat was cooked to
Truth is, it was so good, it didn’t need anything else. I had the beef
filet steak. It was delicious, and the chef added a few pieces of what
he called “red meat.”
These were slices of meat known as the butcher’s cut, a cut favored by
real meat lovers. All main dishes are accompanied by a side order of
potatoes and grilled vegetables.
For dessert, my companion chose the apple crumble. With the meal we had two glasses of Gamla Cabernet.
Thirteen years after it opened, this restaurant still lives up to its
reputation and is one of the best places in Tel Aviv to bring important
guests for dinner or to take yourself for a meaty treat.Stephan Brown
99 Allenby St., Tel Aviv
Open seven days a week from noon to midnight