Juxtaposed in Jaffa

Sardinia is an Italian restaurant that captures the flavor and feel of Old World charm

Italian dish  (photo credit: Courtesy)
Italian dish
(photo credit: Courtesy)

Located in a magnificent stone building in Old Jaffa, overlooking the sea and the town square, the Sardinia restaurant gives you the feeling of being in Rome. It is clean, warm and laid back. Red and white tablecloths are draped over the small tables to complete the look. The menu offers a large selection of starters, pasta dishes (such as ravioli, gnocchi and lasagna), pizza and seafood.

As no Italian meal is complete without a good bottle of wine, Sardinia has an impressive wine list that includes some of the best reds and whites that Israel and Italy have to offer.

Our meal opened with some fantastic starters. The crispy focaccia was well seasoned with sea salt, fresh oregano, olive oil and garlic – perfect for dipping into the accompanying olive oil and balsamic vinegar. The first starter was a fish carpaccio. The fish was sliced so thinly, it seemed to melt in our mouths. It titillated our senses, leaving us giddy for what was to come.

The Italian exploration continued with a sampling of a deliciously thick homemade chestnut soup. Enriched with small pieces of goose breast, Jerusalem artichokes and root vegetables, the soup hit the spot on a wintry highlights events movies television radio dining evening.

This was followed by oven roasted artichokes with leeks, Parmesan cream and mushrooms.

We were so impressed by the simple yet elegant flavors, that we used some of the bread to sop up the juices and sauce.

After we took a bit of a breather, a series of main dishes were served.

First up was a drum fish fillet. The combination of fish and zucchini formed a perfectly balanced combo. The fish was crispy on the outside, but the inside was absolutely perfect: not a drop overdone or underdone. This was followed by a seafood linguine. The buttery, succulent pasta was accompanied by mussels, shrimp, calamari, crab meat and a medley of vegetables. My dining partner, who is an avid seafood fan, simply loved this dish. There was just enough of each delicious item to make you want more and yet feel very satisfied when you’d cleaned your plate.

We were full, but our lovely waitress said we had to taste the desserts, so we asked for a break.

Meanwhile, we were served shots of the Italian aperitif Limoncello.

The liqueur helped, and we were ready for the desserts. We ordered the tiramisu and the warm chocolate cake. Both were equally tasty and well made, though pretty standard fare.

Sardinia is a charming little restaurant, perfect for a business lunch or a romantic dinner. All in all, our experience there was enjoyable. The food was in most cases good and even excellent, and the service was topnotch. Our waitress was kind, attentive and spoke English perfectly, which always makes it that much nicer to enjoy the meal. I recommend it to everyone who loves food – Italian or not. Sardinia also serves as a destination for a thoroughly enjoyable night out in Jaffa. I’m already planning my next trip.

The writer was a guest of the restaurant.

Sardinia, Not kosher, 6 Kedumim Square, Old Jaffa Tel: (03) 683-221