A cut above

Chef Yonatan Roshfeld’s Alma Lounge is a marvel from start to finish.

Chef Yonatan Roshfeld’s Alma Lounge (photo credit: PR)
Chef Yonatan Roshfeld’s Alma Lounge
(photo credit: PR)
Located in Tel Aviv’s renowned Alma Hotel, Alma Lounge is a dining destination that serves food a cut above the rest. Chef Yonatan Roshfeld, best known for his highly acclaimed restaurant Herbert Samuel, is the mastermind behind this impressive cuisine. Since the menu changes seasonally, even weekly, you are guaranteed never to have the same meal twice but instead to experience the ever-changing creative cuisine that Roshfeld shares with Tel Aviv. It’s easy to understand why the locals have taken to the place, given the variety and general excellence of its offerings.
Alma’s management is a marvel of efficiency. From the moment guests are greeted by the host and seated by knowledgeable waiters, each step is carefully supervised. It is the perfect mix of 1920s elegance and Middle Eastern flair. Colorful Georgian chairs stand on a checkered floor, fancy liqueur bottles sparkle on sideboards, and the mirror-backed bar reflects funky artworks.
Upon being seated, we noticed that the bartender was mixing drinks with great gusto. Our waiter reeled off a choice of cocktails, but we stuck to habit and went for the classic margaritas. It was a pleasure watching them being mixed with top-quality ingredients and, although a touch too sweet, they were exceptional and beautifully served.
After nibbling on some fresh crisp whole grain bread, black olives and tomato salsa, it was time to order our appetizers. We started our meal with salmon tartare (NIS 46). The tartare was rich, velvety and flavorful. This was followed by the artichoke rustico (NIS 42) served with goat’s cheese and fresh herbs. The dish was generous and fresh. The artichoke was seasoned beautifully and grilled to perfection.
In between appetizers, our waiter appeared with an extensive wine list. After asking whether we liked red or white, he gave his recommendation. We opted for Cabernet Sauvignon from the Recanati winery. It was indeed an excellent wine, with fruity aromas of red berries and a touch of oak.
Next up was beef tartare (NIS 46). Yes, beef tartare in general is not the most visually appealing dish in the world. If you eat with your eyes, this might not be the best choice. But if you were to make an exception once in a while, I think it’s worth it in this case. The dish had many good elements to it, including a slight hint of smoked aioli paprika that gave it a kick.
Our main courses consisted of the lamb chops (NIS 120/240). If there was one thing I’d come back here for, it would be these lamb chops.
They were delicious, flavorful and had the right amount of spice. They were so tender, too. I could eat these all the time! Last but not least was the chestnut gnocchi (NIS 88). It was wonderful.
The pasta had a nice sweetness to it from the chestnuts (I’m a big fan of sweet tones in savory dishes). And the gnocchi were so light and airy and just melted in your mouth, served with a generous amount of green peas and mushrooms.
The desserts were delightful. We shared two scoops of sorbet (NIS 34) and a piece of chocolate cake (NIS 44).
Alma Lounge is a really pleasant eatery with good food. It’s a little on the expensive side, but you can expect these prices at a specialty restaurant with guaranteed topquality ingredients and excellent service.
The writer was a guest of the restaurant.
Alma Lounge
Not kosher
23 Yavne Street, Tel Aviv
(03) 630-8777