Friday, January 14, 2011

A night out at the Bistro

After a few hectic weeks I finally got a chance to spend a quiet evening alone with my husband. Going out with our 3 energetic kids is not my idea of a romantic experience. I think in one of my next posts I'll describe Israeli kids behaviour at the table, very different than what we saw abroad.
Anyway, we finally found a new reliable babysitter because our former one was enlisted to the army.
Dating my husband is no trivial matter these days. Finding good babysitters is just half the problem,  the other half is we're just too tired. A lot of times we're just giving in and stay at home  Zombie Mode in front of the TV.
Sometimes though, one of us takes the initiative, books the restaurant ,calls in the sitter and voila! We're going out!
Our last date has taken place in a lovely bistro near Shuk Hacarmel in Tel-Aviv. The place is called "Carmela Banachala" ( it roughly translates to Carmela in the Estate). The restaurant is a part of an old building from the beginning of the 20th century which is now being restored.
I loved the interior decor, it was simple but not shabby comprised of a lot of white wood and lovely photos of old beautiful building of Tel-Aviv on the walls. Though they sat us near the toilettes, we were not interrupted. The atmosphere in the place was quiet with a lot of chatter in English. It seems many tourists visit the place or are taken there by their Israeli companions.
We first ordered bubbly Cava cocktails. Not as stylish as real Champaign maybe, but good enough for us. The food part was a bit trickier; everything in the menu looked so good!
After consulting our cute and helpful waitress, we decided on a tasting menu, when you can order each dish in a smaller size to sample as much food as possible. It turned out to be a wise choice. Now I'm no food critic and not a great gourmet eater, so I won't analyse each dish and describe every nuance of taste. Everything we've sampled from the starters like beef fillet carpaccio, through the extremely fresh fish tartar was excellent. The crab bisque was creamy and well seasoned. When the "homemade sausages with sauerkraut and bacon served with "shpetzley" arrived we were already full, but bravely moved on. I wasn't too enthusiastic about the sausages dish but my husband was extremely pleased with them. The food was consumed with a carafe of local wine (Yekev Yatir) that was tasty and not expensive.

We hardly conquered the desert, but we were very content. The food, the atmosphere, the service were terrific. The best part was to be reminded that my husband is a fun and interesting person, and that we can have animated conversation on various subjects not only the kids.
It's good to have a night out from time to time.


  1. great restaurant review. It's nice to be able to eat to peace and you are so right about Israeli childrens' table manners. They really are much louder than their European counterparts (I am thinking French kids in particular)

  2. Thanks Sarah, You should take Raviv and try the place, it is lovely.

  3. good company, great food and peace of mind. life doesn't get any better than that.
    A Husband