Napoleon - The closest thing to visiting France

The pastries at Jerusalem’s ‘Napoleon’ patisserie are worth the calories.

'Napoleon' (photo credit: OFER ABRAHAMOV)
(photo credit: OFER ABRAHAMOV)
Many of us are feeling nostalgic for those days of easy, cheap flights to Europe which today seem so long ago. You may not be able to fly to Paris, but you can feel like it with Napoleon, a new French patisserie in “Music Square” in downtown Jerusalem.
The patisserie was designed by businessman Laurent Levy, who owns the entire Music Square restaurant and is based on a famous Parisian patisserie called Paul. The restaurant is beautifully designed in a large stone building and the tables were spaced far apart.
There are about 48 seats scattered around a large central space inside as well as 40 seats outside. There are different kinds of seating, including armchairs and couches. The restaurant is set up for takeaway as well, with sandwiches, salads, quiches and pastries all temptingly displayed. The take-away uses only recycled packaging materials.
I brought my soldier son on a Friday for a late breakfast, and Napoleon was full of couples and families, as well as doing a brisk take-away business. We both ordered the eggs benedict (one of my all-time favorites) with poached eggs, spinach and smoked salmon. It came with a hot drink and a cold drink. (NIS 66)
There is also a Greek spanakopita breakfast (NIS 62), which is a filo dough pastry stuffed with spinach and cheese, and an Israeli breakfast including eggs for NIS 58. Breakfast is served every day until 4 pm.
There was a strange moment when we asked for orange juice for our cold drink and the manager told us they didn’t have any, so we chose something else. We then saw other tables being served orange juice.
The breakfast was very good, but the sandwiches looked even better. Sandwiches and pastries are smaller than we Israelis are used to. Maybe that’s why so few French are overweight. I’d try the Napoleon (NIS 26) made on healthy three-grain bread with pesto, grilled eggplant, red pepper in za’atar, and a spicy tomato salsa or the gravlax sandwich (NIS 32) which has cured salmon, cream cheese with chives, olive tapenade, capers and pickled onion. There is even sushi (NIS 33 for vegetarian and NIS 39 for fish) that looked good.
The pastries (NIS 20 to NIS 28) are worth every calorie. I tried an eclair with a coffee-flavored ganache on top that was amazing, as well as a different dessert of small dense chocolate bites. If you’re still hungry after all that, you can buy bread and pastries to take home.
Kashrut: Rabbanut Mehuderet
Yoel Moshe Salomon 10 (Music Square)
Hours: Sunday thru Thursday 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Friday: 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Phone: 073-386-9294
The writer was a guest of the restaurant.