Crafty cocktails

Garnish stands out in terms of both quality and service.

Garnish stands out in terms of both quality and service (photo credit: CHANAN ASUR)
Garnish stands out in terms of both quality and service
(photo credit: CHANAN ASUR)
Located on Tel Aviv’s Jabotinsky Street near Kikar Hamedina, Garnish has been on my “must-try” list for quite a while. I finally made it there last week, and it was over and above my expectations. As expected from a cocktail bar attached to Concierge and Room Service, Garnish stands out in terms of both quality and service. The atmosphere is cozy, elegant, chic and dim, and stays quiet enough – even with tons of people and loud music – for you to have an intimate conversation with a friend. Once you settle in, you don’t want to leave.
Everything there is made fresh and with the highest quality care and ingredients, from the bar to the kitchen.
We began with some intriguing cocktails. I’m a whiskey drinker, so I started with the Whiskey in the Jar (NIS 49). Along with the American whiskey, it came with almond liquor, orange juice, honey syrup and bitters chocolate. The whiskey and bitters in this particular cocktail were so incredibly balanced that it could not have been a smoother drink. It was fabulous! My dining partner tried the Big in Japan (NIS 53), which was based on gin infused with Japanese tea. She found it rich, fruity, perfectly sweet and just an overall enjoyable drink.
In terms of the food, the menu is geared toward smaller portions. While the portions may be more like tapas size, the flavor is not. Everything on the menu sounded delicious. We started with the Caesar salad (NIS 48), which consisted of Romaine lettuce, artichoke, Spanish anchovies and shredded Parmesan. The salad was crisp and fresh with dressing on every surface of the lettuce leaves, yet it wasn’t too soggy or overpowering. The croutons were crusty but saturated with dressing flavor.
This was followed by the summer fish tartar (NIS 48). Very simple in execution and bold in complementary flavors, this is a must-order. The fish was super fresh and well-seasoned with pineapple, chili, purple onions, jalapeno aioli and chives. I love raw fish and always enjoy tartar, but this one really distinguished itself.
Next up was the bun burger (NIS 54) which consisted of entrecote meat in an Asian steamed bun. The meat was tender, flavorful and melted in my mouth. The bread was good, too, and gave the sandwich a firm bite, plus the honey-BBQ sauce, jalapeno aioli and roasted pineapple added a simple complement to the entrecote.
In between, we once again tried some tasty cocktails. I was recommended the psycho killer (NIS 54), which consisted of vodka, citrus mix, coconut cream, honey and cinnamon. I was so glad I got this drink because it was delicious, although on the sweeter side. I would like to clarify, though, that I absolutely love coconut cream and that was the star of this cocktail.
The food menu also offers a nice selection of sushi, so we turned our sights toward the Garnillicious (NIS 49) with spicy tuna, avocado, cucumber, green onion and pineapple salsa. The tuna was perfect in texture, almost buttery. You could tell that it was a fatter, richer cut of the tuna rather than the lean, tasteless part that many restaurants use. The rice was just the right level of sticky and slightly sweet.
This was followed by the K-lime (NIS 49) with red drum fish, lime, top tobiko and Japanese mayo. Everything was really delicate and I especially liked that they made cuts into some of the fish so that it wrapped around the rice really well. Also, the little sauce they added in was able to seep into the cuts, making each piece taste better!
For dessert, we shared the chocolate nemesis cake (NIS 46). The cake was melt-in-your-mouth good – very rich, very basic and very sweet.

The writer was a guest of the restaurant.
Not kosher
Jabotinsky St 110, Tel Aviv-Yafo
(03) 696-8581