Angelica: Go for the taster's menu, wine pairing - review

Overall, a memorable meal and one I would be happy to have again.

 Angelica (photo credit: Itai Monnickendam)
Angelica
(photo credit: Itai Monnickendam)

There are just five words you need to know if you are planning a visit to Angelica: “Taster’s menu and wine pairing.” Just ask for that and you will leave happy. I promise.

I reviewed Angelica almost two years ago, just after the first lockdown. Who would have imagined that two years later we would still be dealing with corona? Angelica has been around since 2008, a sign it must be doing something right.

The menu changes seasonally. It has a taster’s menu of five dishes (NIS 290) which is what I recommend. The portions are relatively small, but I was satisfied at the end of the meal. If you don’t want the taster’s menu, there is an extensive fish and meat menu. The entrecote steak at the next table (NIS 178) looked delicious, as did the filet of musar (red drum) (NIS 128). Vegetarians can order the risotto with black lentils (NIS 88).

Before we began our meal, I interviewed longtime manager Jonathan (Yoni) Maman. He is very good at what he does, making each guest feel special. He remembered which table my husband and I had sat at for the last review almost two years ago (!) and then said he had a surprise for me.

He came back a few minutes later with a framed copy of the review I did back then. One of their customers had read it in The Jerusalem Post and had it framed!

Angelica (credit: Courtesy)Angelica (credit: Courtesy)

As I waited for my frequently late dining companion to arrive, the table next to me, a party of six adults, finished their meal and prepared to leave. Before leaving, Peter Cooper, the host of the dinner, came over to my table. (I promise this really happened!)

“I saw you interviewing the manager and I just have to tell you something,” he said. “Before corona, we came twice a year to Israel, and on our first night we always have dinner here. It’s become a family tradition. This is our first trip back since corona, so of course we had to come here.”

My tardy companion, aka my 21-year-old son, arrived (I don’t know who raised him to think it’s not rude to keep your dinner companion waiting), and Yoni asked us if we wanted the wine pairing with the taster’s menu.

The wine pairing is an excellent value at NIS 80, with four generous pours of wine to go along with the dishes served. In fact, the pours were so generous, and I was so tired, that my son said, “Mom, I think I better drive you home before I go out.” How the tables have turned!

The menu has been put together by chef Roei Achdot, and chef and co-owner Marcus Gershkovitz is around to supervise (and drink vodka shots with the customers). The dishes are all beautifully composed and look like paintings.

We started off with a unique dish of drum fish with strawberries and pomelo in a spicy Thai sauce. It was a beautifully composed dish and went beautifully with the Pinto Chardonnay that wine waiter Ze’ev Dvir chose for us. Pinto is a new winery in Yeroham, and the chardonnay is excellent.

The next dish made my foodie son very happy – a beef tartare made from beef filet with capers and quail eggs. Ze’ev paired it with a Pinot Noir of whole clusters from Segal Winery. A nice pairing indeed.

Next was another fish dish – this time a filet of drum fish served with a pea cream and olive powder. The wine was a Galil Mountain Grenache, an interesting choice that went well.

For our second main course, we had the shaitel, which is rump steak. Shaitel is not a tender cut, but this was cooked perfectly and melted in my mouth. I could easily have eaten more of this.

For dessert we had a plate with four mini-desserts, including a tiny lemon meringue pie and an even tinier Ferrero Rocher truffle. The wine was a sweet ice wine from Hevron Heights called Eden.

Overall, a memorable meal and one I would be happy to have again.

Angelica4 George Washington StreetHours: Sunday-Thursday, 6 p.m.-10 p.m.Kashrut: Jerusalem Rabbinate

The writer was a guest of the restaurant.