Tag Archives: Latin

Cuban Disappointment: Alma the Cuba

22 Jun

A while ago we decided to check the new Latino restaurant that was opened in Ha’Arbaah Street. In general, Tel Aviv lacks restaurants that bring the Latin American sense. When we found out that a new Cuban place opened up, we’ve invited Roee and Gal to join us checking the place.

Mojito

Mojito

From the outside the place looks empty but when you go inside you realize that this is where everything is actually happening. This is kind of weird because usually bars and restaurants take over some of the street in order to create more room for their tables, but in this case you had to go inside, pass an empty bar and just then get to the action, not that there is much of it. It seems as all the elderly people from the nearby Bridge club have finish playing earlier that day and decided to go for a drink in the new bar. We were the youngest people in the room.

The waitress was more promising as she was talking with Spanish accent which made us believe, for a few moments, that maybe there is something authentic about the place. In the background, salsa music was played so in order to get into the mood we’ve asked for a Mojito, Quilmes and Havana Club Rum.

Havanna Club shots

Havanna Club shots

Although the (half) promising start, the food did not stand out our expectations. In general it was too fried and not cohesive. Part of the dishes was classic pub food and the others fit a restaurant.

Take for example the “Cuban Chips Mix” – theoretically you would expect some twist on the “bar chips” with mix of interesting ingredients – in practice these were thin slices of potatoes and yam deep fried. Nothing new, so why calling it “Cuban Mix”?

Cuban Chips

Cuban Chips

Another example is “Baby Back Ribs” – In contrast to other dishes we have ordered, this was a classic restaurant dish while others were much more suitable for a bar. The dish included Ribs, Rice with black beans and spicy carrot salad. Though it wasn’t bad, it felt as the dish came from a different menu. The other dishes – Croquets and Ceviche – did not stand out and were quite boring.

Baby Back Ribs

Baby Back Ribs

Heading out of the place we felt unsatisfied and still in desire of some fine food and drinks, so we decided to go the neighbor bar – La Champa (which unfortunately closed its doors now).

The Check Please (4 People)

Mojito – 42NIS
3X Quilmes – 78NIS
3X Havana Club 3 Shots –57 NIS
Baby Back Ribs – 52NIS
Croquets Paratagas – 47NIS
Cuban Chips Mix -21NIS
Ceviche Malakon – 37NIS

All in all: 334NIS

The Cizer Kobrinsky Scale:

2.5 Forks

2.5 Forks

Contact Details: Alma de Cuba
16 Ha’Arba’a st. Tel Aviv | 035234894
Daily 17:00-02:00
http://en.almadecuba.co.il/

The Slippery Slope of Quality – Frida Kahlo (Updated)

7 Mar

Update July 2013: The place is closed.

A while ago we reviewed Frida Kahlo and we were quite satisfied with the dinner. Short while ago, after we have published our review, one of the Israeli coupons sites, Grouper, had publish a deal with the restaurant. Buy a 60 NIS coupon and get a 120 NIS meal. Since we liked the place we did not think twice and bought the coupon.

This time, the experience was so bad we that our moral obligation, to our readers, made us come back home and write this post.

We took the Plata de Mariscos, formally known as the best course from the previous visit – this time the seafood seemed to be forgotten on the grill while the cauliflower and sheep cheese mousse were tasteless. Other than this course, we took four new courses we did not try up until that dinner – Ensalada de Frida, Calamari & Shrimps Masabcha,  Elior’s ceviche & pickled rump steak. None of these dishes was at the level of taste we had in the last visit – we did not like any of them, therefore we are not specifying much about them.

While eating in order to be full and not in the name of enjoying the food, we agreed that the participation of Frida Kahlo in such deals and discounts took it down the slippery slope with regards to food quality. Unfortunately, because of the bad experience, though we did like the place in past visits, we shall not be back to Frida Kahlo again.

The Cizer-Kobrinsky Scale:

1.5 Forks

 

Mexican Art – Frida Kahlo

9 Jan

Update July 2012: The place have closed its doors.

Update from March 7th: The Slippery Slope of Quality – Frida Kahlo

Frida Kahlo (Wiki page)

Lilienblum street, the street that was famous in its USD black market back in the early 80’s and had woken up the following decade as the center of Tel Aviv’s nightlife has settled down these days and tries to compete its attractive neighbor Rotchild street. When you try to compete Rotchild, you must have at least some decent restaurant. Exactly like Frida Kahlo.

Frida Kahlo, which is named after the famous Mexican painter, is an Israeli-Latin bar/restaurant that was opened two years ago, and serves up only starters and desserts – quite a variation on the Israeli tapas bars. Located in a beautiful building on the corner of Lilienblum and Allenby, the place provides a long bar, lots of places to sit, a private room, a great Latin atmosphere and some really good food.

Provencal Carpaccio

The menu is divided into 4 parts: Vegetation, Sea, Meat and Sweets. Since the restaurant serves only starters you should probably share 4 or 5 courses between two persons. That’s what we did.  From the vegetation part we took a Provencal Carpaccio: (very) thin slices tomatoes with blocks of goat cheese – a wonderful light starter with some very intense flavors.

Kadaif & Eggplant

We also took the Kadaif with Eggplant: Kadaif baked noodles filled with goat cheese and burnt eggplant – a nice course but quite heavier because of the large amount of cheese. From the Sea part we took a “Plata de Mariscos” (Seafood plate): Calamari & Shrimps served on top of cauliflower and sheep cheese mousse – That course was easily awarded as the best course by us. The mousse texture was amazing and the combination with rightly cooked seafood was perfect. You’ll lick your fingers. From the meat part we took Biffe de Frida: a rump steak served with peppers puree and cherry source – that was also a very good choice as the steak was very tender and sauce was a great match to it.

Katalan Crème, Fruit Salad & Frozen grapefruit campari

To end the dinner with a taste that last, we also took a burnt Katalan Crème that was served with a fruit salad and a frozen grapefruit with Campari – a nice dessert, not too heavy, that together with a bottle of Cava, allowed us to finish off the dinner not fully blown out.

The check please (2 people)

Provencal Carpaccio – 37 NIS
Kadaif and Eggplant – 37 NIS
Plata de Mariscos – 51 NIS
Biffe de Frida – 48 NIS
Katalan Crème – 33 NIS
Bottle of Cava – 80 NIS

All in all: 286 NIS

Summary:

Food: Israeli-Latin Bar\Restaurant
Price: Medium-Expensive
Location: Lilienblum

The Cizer-Kobrinsky Scale

Contact details: Frida Kahlo

Address:  43 Lilienblum Street, Tel Aviv | Phone: 0579442989
Opening Hours:  Mon-Sat 12:00-16:00, 19:00-00:30, Sun closed
http://www.rest.co.il/sites/default.asp?txtRestID=9434 (sorry – no English site)

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