(photo credit: PR)
Not only a good name for a restaurant, Aria has also established itself as a well- reputed moniker on the Tel Aviv culinary scene. It recently launched a new summer menu featuring a wide array of signature dishes with a gourmet touch.
Aria has a soft and warm interior design, which includes a window that offers guests a peek into the open kitchen, creating an all- round inviting and intimate dining atmosphere. Chef Guy Gamzu fuses Israeli cuisine with Mediterranean style cooking. Every item on the menu receives special attention and showcases dishes unique to Aria in both taste and presentation.
Our meal opened with some fantastic starters. We began with the calamari salad (NIS 58) with chili paste, tomatoes, mint and coriander served on sheep yogurt. The flavors were on point – and I don’t particularly like calamari. The calamari was grilled perfectly without being overcooked, complemented by the flavorful greens served with them.
Without question, our favorite starter was the salmon tataki (NIS 58), layered in a vinaigrette of tamarind and lemon grass and sprinkled with caramelized cashew nuts. This dish appealed to our senses of color and presentation. Each ingredient spoke for itself, enhanced by a light sprinkling of sea salt and a drizzle of olive oil.
For mains, we were presented with a 220g sirloin steak (NIS 138) in a sauce. We were not disappointed. In fact, we were more than impressed. The sirloin was the tastiest and most tender that I’ve eaten in recent memory. The whole thing was beautifully executed. The meat was very moist, with delicate flavors that added a wonderful freshness. Along with the mashed potato, broccoli and Porcini mushrooms underneath, the dish would have been enough for a meal.
Last we were served the oxtail pasta (NIS 98). This was a very savory and hearty comfort dish with the perfect harmony of flavors. The pasta was cooked to perfection and the oxtail, simmered for four hours in red wine and root vegetables, just melted in the mouth. After a bit of a breather, it was on to dessert. We began with the white chocolate crunch (NIS 42) with passion fruit cream. I loved every part of this dish. The presentation, the flavors, the quantity and the way it all came together made this a memorable dessert. The tart citrus of the passion fruit nicely complemented the white chocolate. This was followed by the deliciously decadent Nemesis (NIS 45). Even though we had eaten far too much already, we strove valiantly to finish this rich chocolate brownie creation, surrounded by caramelized sea salt, burnt marshmallow, cocoa bean crumble and vanilla ice cream When we left, we promised ourselves to go back there soon. Amid the variety of food we tasted was a consistent focus on fresh, wholesome flavors and ingredients and subtle, artistic presentation. After eating at many trendy chef restaurants that try to reinvent cooking, it was so refreshing to have what can only be described as very good food.
The writer was a guest of the restaurant.
66 Nahalat Binyamin St., Tel Aviv Tel: (03) 529-6054