A popular kosher enclave

For flavorful Mediterranean fare, Medita fills the bill.

For flavorful Mediterranean fare, Medita fills the bill (photo credit: Courtesy)
For flavorful Mediterranean fare, Medita fills the bill
(photo credit: Courtesy)
In a city full of restaurants trying to make a name for themselves in new and creative ways, Medita (short for Mediterranean) is one that has found its niche and sticks to it. With its seasonal dishes, this popular kosher enclave in Jerusalem takes dining to a whole new level. It’s easy to understand why locals and tourists alike have taken to the place, given the variety and excellence of its offerings. It is the younger sister of the wellknown Jerusalem restaurant Hachatzer, both of which are owned by Moti Ohana.
At Medita, run by chef Kobi Segev, patrons are greeted by an inviting ambience, modern decor and a spacious dining room.
The menu, which features a little bit of every major kosher meat group, as well as fish and vegetarian options, is eclectic but with a Mediterranean touch. We opted to go with the tasting menu, which changes slightly every night, depending on what ingredients suit the chef’s fancy (NIS 220).
Our waitress was very knowledgeable about the menu and had many suggestions tailored to our preferences. She took her time explaining details of dishes and drinks.
She started by bringing us the homemade focaccia with a variety of delicious dips such as tehina, creamed eggplant with date honey, pickled vegetable salad and matbucha. This was followed by small plates of fried cauliflower and okra in tomato sauce. Both were very tasty.
Next up was a tuna ceviche served in half a coconut shell on a bed of ice. I’m a sucker for a good ceviche, and this place delivers that. It was an incredible fusion of sweet, spicy and citric. The infusion of mango, coconut pieces, nuts and spicy aioli helped complement the subtle texture and flavors of the raw fish, which we greatly enjoyed.
We were then served white fish kebabs and small pieces of grilled salmon. The kebabs were nicely spiced and moist, while the salmon was grilled just right – crispy on the outside, delicate on the inside.
In between, we enjoyed two glasses of a local Gewurztraminer, which had enough fruit, body and sweetness to complement the complex flavors, textures and oils of the dishes.
Our culinary adventure continued with lamb arepas. The light and airy pita-shaped flatbread made of ground maize was delicious, while the meat itself was juicy and well marinated. However, my dining partner and I felt that the tehina mixed in with lamb was slightly overpowering.
A definite highlight was the goose liver served in a mufleta, which is a traditional Moroccan crepe. I usually have a hard time with liver in any form except when it is paired with something sweet. This dish did not disappoint. The crepe was drizzled with honey and sprinkled with chopped nuts, while the foie gras was seared to pink perfection. I could easily have eaten it for dessert.
This was followed by one of Medita’s signature dishes – barbecued asado in an orange sauce. Although a little fatty, the slowroasted meat was juicy, tender and pretty much falling off the bone, with just the right amount of sweet citrus sauce. My inner caveman came out when I got down to the bones. Cleaning them off was possibly my favorite part of the meal.
Last, we were presented with a meat platter that included lamb chops, beef fillet and entrecote. Everything was delicious, especially the chops, which were seasoned to a perfection that did not mask the natural flavor of the lamb.
To finish our dinner, we tried a sample plate of different desserts that included vanilla ice cream, chocolate souffle on top of meringue and a chocolate brownie atop a Belgian waffle.
The writer was a guest of the restaurant.
Medita Kosher 101 Derech Hebron, Jerusalem Tel: (02) 566-4466