I love to eat and this post is all about some scrumptious places in/near Jerusalem. However, this first one is actually a chain all over the country. Aroma is their equivalent of Starbucks but with a bigger focus on sandwiches and salads. The drinks are great and my favourite is called Iced Aroma (it’s a mix of a mocha/cappuccino). Food wise everything is prepared fresh in their kitchen and customisable aka what type of bread, salad dressing etc. You can see here the tuna salad with egg, lettuce, gherkins and potatoes, and a halloumi sandwich in the back. They also have pastries, smoothies and other traditional cafe treats. I adore Aroma and it’s a must for any visit.
This next place is in Mahane Yehuda which I mentioned in this post. It is called Azura and offers a selection of Israeli and Middle Eastern delights. For free you get some pickles, olives and onion, as well as pitta. I then went for a dish with potatoes, onions, aubergine, mince and cinnamon. It was a little oily but really delicious. The place feels very authentic and is tucked away in the busyness of the shuk. All the other people eating were locals but luckily I managed to blag my way in and eat up! It had a very ‘home cooking’ vibe to it, something that Grandma might make.
This place is a little out of Jerusalem but perfect for a stop on your way in or out. Abu Gosh is an Arab village and full of amazing eateries and restaurants – it’s what I like to call ‘typical Israel food’ haha. A bunch of small dishes including fresh salads, houmous, pitta, falafel balls, lemonade and olives/onions again. I got the chicken shish kebab with rice but there were tons of options including liver, beer, salmon etc. Everything is served as it’s ready from the kitchen and it’s pretty much a tapas/meze party.
Food is a very big deal in Israel especially among the older community. They associate cooking with love and put a lot of time and effort into their dishes. For my other Israel foody recommendations check out Tel Aviv and Haifa!