Lifshitz: An intimate tapas bar of off Ben-Yehuda with creative signature dishes.
By ORIT ARFA
Lifshitz is a tapas-bar tucked away on Rehov Ben-Yehuda, with an emphasis on the tapas. However, it's also easy to stress the name, since the owner/chef, Amnon Lifshitz, is the son of famous Israeli painter Uri Lifshitz.
But even though a painting of the artist hangs on the wall, Lifshitz Jr. says he chose the name because, after all, the place is his own. After working for seven years as a chef in both Israel and New York, he wanted to open a bar that served small dishes (tapas) of his own design.
And the tapas-bar does stand on its own merits.
Lifshitz Junior personally prepares each dish as if it were a painting. The seared calamari with sumac and tobacco (NIS 26); the homemade ravioli with ricotta, eggplant, and tomato sauce (NIS 27); and the risotto with root vegetables and blue cheese (NIS27) are all very flavorful, and go very well with wine, liquor and intimate conversation. The highest-priced item on the Mediterranean menu is NIS 33.
The design of the tapas-bar - classic sleek black leather - is not as creative as the dishes. Lifshitz's brother, Giora, is a blacksmith and designed some of the metal work, although there is no flashy design concept. Lifshitz didn't want a loud pick-up bar for the masses but a quiet corner where people can appreciate some quality liquor and tapas. Even its exterior is modest, making Lifshitz easy to miss (unlike the place across the street, which advertises on the window that it's a new neighborhood bar with food).
Ben Yehuda 155, Tel Aviv; hours: from 7 p.m.; music: jazzy chill. Tel: (03) 523-5411.
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