Chef Eyal Shani.
(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)
From London to New York and Paris, and now even Bangkok, Israeli cuisine is continuing to win over taste buds around the globe.
For the second year running, Assaf Granit’s Barbary was named the best restaurant in London by Time Out magazine.
The weekly said the eatery – which opened in 2016 – “is labeled as ‘modern Israeli,’ though in truth, it’s anything but. What they’ve done is taken the ancient recipes from across North Africa (from the one-time Barbary Coast) and the Middle East that have gone on to influence food in today’s Israeli kitchen, then re-imagined them.”
While the magazine doesn’t seem to have much of a grasp on modern Israeli cuisine, it recommends one and all head to try out the falafel, halloumi, Jerusalem bagel and more at the popular restaurant. Granit and his co-owner Uri Navon are also behind the acclaimed Palomar in London, and of course Jerusalem’s Machneyuda.
Across the pond in New York, another Israeli chef is continuing to make waves.
Eyal Shani, who opened up a branch of his popular chain Miznon in Manhattan earlier this year, has received recognition for his signature dish – a whole roasted cauliflower.
The dish, which the cocky and charismatic chef claims to have invented, was named in Food & Wine magazine as its best recipe of 2018.
Acclaimed food writer and Top Chef judge Gail Simmons wrote in the magazine’s September issue that Shani “may be singularly responsible for an international obsession with roasted cauliflower.”
She added that after hearing the chef describe its origins and process – “I’m happily stunned by how unadulterated it is.”
Shani celebrated the news on Instagram, writing last week that it was “a moment of great happiness, for the recognition and the justice that was done.”
And while Paris, London and New York have been hot spots for Israeli cuisine for years, one local chef has targeted a new city: Bangkok.
Local favorite Moshe Segev – known in some circles as the man who served the visiting Japanese prime minister dessert in a shoe – has opened up his first ever eatery overseas.
Last month Segev celebrated opening up a dessert bar called Segev Concept in the Thai capital. The eatery is a new addition to his long line of restaurants in Israel, including a range of upscale restaurants, two kosher spots in Beersheba and Netanya, a fast food joint in Rishon Lezion, and, most recently, a Japanese sushi bar in Hod Hasharon.
Hopefully, he’ll still find time to cook for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s next diplomatic visitors.
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