Bon Boya

The Boya restaurant in the Tel Aviv Port has a cheerfulm atmosphere and an eclectic menu.

Boya restaurant 311 (photo credit: Courtesy)
Boya restaurant 311
(photo credit: Courtesy)
Located at the northernmost tip of the Tel Aviv Port, Boya serves an eclectic-modern menu consisting of seafood, meat, salads, pasta, pizza and more. The relaxed and elegant restaurant overlooking the scenic water’s edge is ideal for lunch on a sunny winter day but was pleasant even on the cold winter night we were there, despite the crashing waves. The ambience is cheerful, and the decor is warm with its rich dark wooden tables and chairs.
It was hard to choose from the mouth-watering list of starters. We sampled the lightly seared red tuna, enveloped with Japanese black sesame seeds and peppercorns, which made my taste buds dance with delight. The tuna was so soft and velvety that I didn’t want to share it with my dining partner. The rich red tuna looked like it had been caught just a few hours before it landed on my plate.
Another starter we ordered was that night’s special – tofu sacks (inari) stuffed with extremely spicy salmon, tomatoes and mayonnaise. It was delicious. Be warned, it really is extremely spicy, but we loved its strong flavor.
Next we had the oven-roasted eggplant, which was my dining partner’s favorite dish. It was served on a bed of soft feta cheese, tomato cubes and a creamy sauce that complemented the tastes. The iceberg, crouton and Parmesan salad followed, topped with a light and fresh aioli dressing. I’m not a huge fan of iceberg lettuce, but this was seasoned cleverly, so it was crisp and enjoyable. My dining partner was disappointed with the calamari dish she ordered. All these were complemented by foccacia, which was lightly dressed with olive oil but was dry on the sides.
Continuing with fish, I ordered grilled sea bream with mashed root vegetables, asparagus and tomato salsa, which was light and delicious. Across the table my friend had the fish special – a grouper steak on a bed of spicy seafood. The buttery, succulent fish steak is accompanied with mussels, shrimp, calamari and a medley of spinach and artichokes. There is just enough of each delicious item to make you want more and yet feel very satisfied when you’ve cleaned your plate.
Another main dish we sampled was the succulent grilled fillet of beef medallions with mashed potatoes and asparagus, which was simply delicious and perfectly done.
For dessert we tried several items. The Boya Bueno is made of two small chocolate fingers with nuts at the bottom, rich chocolate in the center and vanilla drops on top. This was by far my favorite dessert. The sorbet came in a huge bowl with three generous scoops of velvety strawberry, coconut and passion fruit. The equally generous halva parfait was very sweet. It had a vanilla cheesecake-like center covered in dark chocolate and topped with halva shavings. Not the most outstanding dessert I’ve had, but you wouldn’t send it back.
What you would return to the kitchen was the banana tart. It takes 20 minutes to make, but it is not worth the wait or the calories. One bite and I was done. The dough was thin and had a strange consistency, and the bananas were overly saturated in caramel sauce.
All in all, our experience at Boya was enjoyable. The food was in most cases good and even excellent, and the service was topnotch – our waitress was kind, attentive and spoke English perfectly, which always makes it that much nicer to enjoy the meal.
We looked at the breakfast menu, which is rich and mouth-watering, and I’ve been told that their breads are sensational, so we vowed to come back for it. With reasonable prices, a scenic location and plenty of parking, this is a great place to enjoy a good meal.
The writer was a guest of the restaurant.
Not kosher
Tel Aviv Port
Tel: (03) 544-6166