Tag Archives: Off topic

Christmas at Munich

30 Mar

Munich17

It have been more than three months ago, and it was business not pleasure, but we really enjoyed our stay in the great city of Munich. It was the beginning of December and we arrive just in time to experience the preparation of Christmas celebration.

Munich

Munich

We stayed in Unterschlisem, 20 minutes train ride from Munich, as Inbar was on a training at Microsoft office. Unterschlisem is quite boring city so we have found ourselves on the train to Munich every night. The biggest advantage of the hotel we stayed in was that we found out that Bayern Munich players are preparing to their games in our hotel.

Karlplatz to Marienplatz

Between Karlplatz to Marienplatz

Between Karlplatz to Marienplatz

Most of our visit, walking and shopping was between these two main plazas.

Augustiner Großgaststätten

Augustiner

Augustiner

Walking between Karlplatz to Marienplatz, we found the Augustiner. Large restaurant, in which you share your table, eat sausages and drink a beer. In general, this sums up the experience in most of (tourist) German restaurants we have visited. We had the Augustiner beer, Bavarian beer that was very nice. http://www.augustiner-restaurant.com/

Augustiner Beer

Augustiner Beer

Viktualienmarkt

Gluhwein

Gluhwein

Very cool market, most of it is food (meat), fruits and flowers. We drank there Gluhwein for the first time in our visit. Gluhwein is hot red wine and it seems to be very popular to drink it at this time of the year. Lots of street counters were selling red wine and eggnog and many people stops for a short warming break.

Viktualienmarkt

Viktualienmarkt

We also ate a bun filled with piece of meat. For us, eating “Dry” sandwich is quite weird because we are used to rich, full-of-vegetables sandwiches along with some sauce or paste. Nevertheless, we found out that fresh bun, with good meat and a bit of mustered on the side, was quite satisfying.

Fresh bun with good meat

Fresh bun with good meat

Xmas Market

Christmas decoration

Christmas decoration

Most of our meals in Munich were on counters located on the street and not in restaurants, as we used to. As I mentioned before, it was December and the streets were full of counters selling food and Christmas decoration. We had some fried potatoes (Pommes Frites), Hot Chestnuts, Banana and strawberry topped with hot chocolate on a skew and many more.

Pommes Frites

Pommes Frites

Hofbräuhaus

Huge touristic restaurant with impressive history of over a decade homemade beers and Bavarian Bands playing traditional music. We eat nice Shpetzli and very good Schweinshaxe (pork leg). http://www.hofbraeuhaus.de/

Hofbräuhaus Beer

Hofbräuhaus Beer

Oliveto

We had a chance to meet in Munich our Mexican friend, Luis. We scheduled a dinner with him and he brought another friend from Australia, whom he met in his hostel.  We had a nice dinner and eat some very good food: Pizza, Fish and Shpetzili again. http://www.restaurant-oliveto.de/

Tollwood Market

Famous Christmas market with lots of food counters, music, drinks and clothes. Unfortunately. We forgot to take the camera that day. http://www.tollwood.de/en/

Nam Giao 31

Nam Giao

Nam Giao

We’ve decided to end our journey at the restaurant that is located on the 1st place in Trip Advisor for Munich. Ambitious, I know but definitely worth it. It is a small, family-run Vietnamese restaurant that cooks their traditional food. Because of its size, one must book a table ahead. Everything we ate there was perfect and very tasty. It was only when we got back to Tel Aviv we found out that the Asian restaurants are now a big hit in town as well. http://www.namgiao31.de/

Nam Giao

Nam Giao

Allianz Arena

Allianz Arena

Allianz Arena

Though we usually write about food, we do want to share some other exciting events. Being at the Alianz Arena is definitely one of them. We had the chance to go to a Bayern Munich game in the Champions League. This was amazing (cold) experience, and we were lucky to be in the crowd when Bayern beat Bate Borisov 4:1. Amazing Stadium, Amazing crowd and Amazing team. Go Bayern!

Bayern Munich

Bayern Munich

Overall we can say we really enjoyed this business trip. Thanks to my colleagues, Steve and Annkathrin for their recommendations.

Just Us

Just Us

Tengo Hambre: The Spanish Experience

10 Nov

Two years ago Shahar and I visited Madrid for a private vacation just before I started to work for Microsoft.  As food lovers we searched for places to eat and as usual we were looking for the locals recommendations instead of the touristic places. At that visit we came across a blog of a Spanish guy from Madrid that wrote English recommendations about the Spanish restaurants. In that trip we have realized we should write such a blog about Tel Aviv. My current trip, which was a business trip, was some kind of a closure as I visited the city in which the blog was founded from.

Thanks to my Spanish guide Hector, and some wondering around the streets I have tested again the wonderful tastes of Madrid.

Mercado de San Miguel
I admit, this is a very touristic place and it seems that the locals don’t really go there. Nevertheless it was very nice experience of colors, tastes and sounds.  I even discovered over there that Sea Urchin is something people actually eat.

Mercado de San Miguel

Mercado de San Miguel

Mercado de San Miguel

Mercado de San Miguel

Bazaar Restaurant

Very ‘value for money’ place. You can’t book a place in advanced so we came there, registered and went to drink a beer in the Chueca barrio. At the restaurant itself I took a Burger that was a bit dry in my opinion but overall it was a good lunch. Very good Cheese Cake.
http://www.restaurantbazaar.com

Bazaar

Bazaar

El Zagal
To this place I arrived just because it was very close to my hotel. I had a traditional dish of Octopus with Potatoes and Paprika (Pulpo Gallego).
http://madrid.salir.com/cerveceria_restaurante_el_zagal

El Zagal

El Zagal

Taberna Txacolina
I have asked Hector for a tapas and beer tour in all the cool places, so he took me to Calle de la Cava Baja in La Latina. We were in a few places and the one I liked the best was Txacolina. The place had good vibe and quite big tapas.
http://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Restaurant_Review-g187514-d1942497-Reviews-Taberna_Txacolina-Madrid.html

Txacolina

Txacolina

Txacolina

Txacolina

With Hector at Txacolina

With Hector at Txacolina

La Gloria Montera
Another place by the owners of the Bazar restaurant. Overall i think it was also value for money as I payed 21 EUR for a good Salad, Entrecote Steak and wine. I drank the wine by myself, wishing Shahar was there to share the experience with me.
http://www.lagloriademontera.com/

Malatesta
I have arrived here by chance. I was walking around the streets looking for something to eat and I was already a bit tired from all the deep fried food. Then I have noticed this small and cute place and I knew right away this is the place for me. It was a bit expensive but definitely worth it. The pasta was great and I finally had a real salad with fresh vegetables
http://trattoriamalatesta.com

Malatesta

Malatesta

Orio Fuencarral
I went there on our night out with all the Spanish guys and the people from the training. In my opining the tapas there were over-fried. I mean why everything should be deep fried? And when I’m saying everything I mean that even the oysters were fried.
http://www.oriogastronomiavasca.com/

Orio Fuencarral

Orio Fuencarral

Tempranillo
My biggest challenge in Madrid was going by myself to a tapas bar, push people in order to get to the bar and then to ask for food in Spanish. On my last night in Madrid I decided I will do it no matter what. I went back to Cava Baja and found Tempranillo. It wasn’t easy for me but I found myself at the bar asking for “Jamon Serrano con pan tomate y vino tinto” and afterwards I was able to ask for 2 or 3 more tapas by myself from the Spanish menu. That was a joy! And the food was very good as well.
http://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Restaurant_Review-g187514-d990681-Reviews-Tempranillo-Madrid.html

Tempranillo

Tempranillo

Tempranillo

Tempranillo

Santiago Bernabeu
Yes I know, this is a food blog not sports. Nevertheless one cannot miss mentioning that he (or she) was at a game of Real Madrid in the Santiago Bernabeu. Absolutely amazing experience that does not remind the Israeli football in any way.

Real Madrid

Real Madrid

Off Topic – Thailand

9 Oct
Koh Samui

Koh Samui

It has become a tradition in our blog – writing summary post about a visit abroad. This time we spent the holidays in Thailand. It was actually our second visit and it was worth coming back.

Phuket

Kata Beach

We started the trip with a gamble about the weather in Phuket. Unfortunately, it wasn’t a good bet but we did have the chance to eat good food.

Lucky Toms

Lucky Toms

Lucky Toms – Traditional Thai food in reasonable price for a place that is located in center of touristic street. The spiciest Som Tam (Papaya Salad). http://www.tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_Review-g1210687-d1898885-Reviews-Lucky_Tom_s-Kata_Beach_Phuket.html

Largo Tapas – Although having oxymoron in their name, the place serves seafood tapas at a higher level than the average in Phuket. And no, the tapas were not big as the name promises and were quite expensive.  http://www.facebook.com/LargoTapas

Weekend Market

Weekend Market

Weekend Market

Weekend Market

Weekend Market – We can’t recommend on a specific stand but you can be sure that everything there looks good. We had a very good dinner just by picking small dishes form different stands. When you are tired from going around, in the middle of clothing section you will find a bar, located in a leather store where you can drink a beer and relax from shopping.

Weekend Market

Weekend Market

Kwong Shop Seafood

Kwong Shop Seafood

Kwong Shop Seafood – Nice place to eat seafood, big crab and prawn shrimp on the grill. http://www.tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_Review-g1210687-d1792735-Reviews-Kwong_Shop_Seafood-Kata_Beach_Phuket.html

Il Tagliere da Massimo

Il Tagliere da Massimo

Il Tagliere da Massimo – Italian relief from all the Thai. Good Pizza. This is also the place to ask why does every restaurant in Thailand that specialized in non-Thai cuisine doesn’t have courage of not having Thai menu? http://www.tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_Review-g1210687-d2152086-Reviews-Il_Tagliere_da_Massimo-Kata_Beach_Phuket.html

Koh Samui

Lamai Beach

Harry’s – The place specializes in breakfast (American style) and open just until the afternoon. We ate lunch that was the cheapest meal we had in Thailand – 280Bhat. Very good Massaman curry and Tom Yum Goong.

Harry’s

Harry’s

Harry’s

Harry’s

Chaweng Beach

Samui Institute of Thai Culinary Arts – Very nice cooking class that introduces you to the basic ingredients of the Thai cuisine.    http://www.sitca.net/

Samui Institute of Thai Culinary Arts

Samui Institute of Thai Culinary Arts

Samui Institute of Thai Culinary Arts

Samui Institute of Thai Culinary Arts

Samui Institute of Thai Culinary Arts

Samui Institute of Thai Culinary Arts

Bophut Beach

Zazen – Samui was supposed to be a culinary center and as such there are several chef restaurants. We decided to check Zazen that was declared as the people’s favorite in a fine dine local guide. Although the prices were much higher than the average Thai restaurants (even above average Israeli restaurants) the food was just OK. http://www.samuizazen.com/bestrestaurantssamui.html

Zazen

Zazen

Zazen

Zazen

Koh Tao

Barracuda – The Koh Tao’s surprise. Thai fusion. http://www.barracudakohtao.com/

Barracuda

Barracuda

FIZZ beachlounge – Beach bar with surprising good food.

Moov – Bar with a good atmosphere, good drinks and interesting food. Bad service though.

Bangkok

Bangkok's Skyline

Bangkok’s Skyline

Above Elven – AMAZING experience! Don’t miss the view from the 33 floor. Though there is a roof top restaurants trend in Bangkok, we heard most of them don’t justify their price. Above eleven was recommended otherwise and delivered. Above eleven is a Nikkei (Peruvian/Japanese) cuisine bar-restaurant that provided some excellent original dishes. Don’t forget to visit the toilet for another great city view. http://www.aboveeleven.com/

Above Elven

Above Elven

Bangkoks Skyline

Bangkoks Skyline

Isao – Tagged in some blogs as the best Japanese in Bangkok, Isao proved to be excellent. Smaller and more casual than expected, the sushi there was far better than any Israeli sushi we had. The Nigiri are especially tasty. http://www.isaotaste.com/

Isao

Isao

Isao

Isao

Tapas Café – As we can’t finish a trip without trying some Spanish food we tried Tapas Café, that was considered as a place of real tapas. The dishes weren’t cheap but quite true to its native country. Add the casual Spanish atmosphere along with the good authentic food (try the Galician style prawns) and you get a very nice place to have a dinner. http://www.tapasiarestaurants.com/

Us...

Us…

On the way to Eilat – Korenmehl Farm

17 Apr

Finally, Passover and all its food restrictions, is over.  Except for Matza bread (which we didn’t eat), Passover also means holiday – and this year we decided to explore the Negev and we took Adi and Tomer as hostages.

The Dead Sea

The Dead Sea

We started in the Dead Sea area and then we moved to Sde Boker. We had a quite long trip but this a food blog so we will only focus on the culinary, and coming to describe the culinary side, there was one restaurant that worth mentioning and stopping by – if you’re on your way to Eilat or around the Negev.

Sde Boker - Tzin Creek

Sde Boker - Tzin Creek

Korenmehl Farm is located on road 40, just a bit after Tlalim Kibbutz. It is a lonely farm on a hill top with extraordinary view. The farm raises flock of sheep and serves food that is based on their milk. As such the restaurant is vegetarian. Fortunately, we sat at the best place in the restaurant observing the desert breathtaking view.

Goat Yogurt Drink with Sweet Syrup

Goat Yogurt Drink with Sweet Syrup

We started with a special drink – Natural goat yogurt drink that was served alongside sweet syrup that gave it a nice twist. At this point we were very hungry and decided to share several courses: Tomme Katom – grated Tomme cheese served above Cherry Tomatoes and roasted red Pepper. Simple dish that respects the homemade cheese; Mini Red Peppers filed with soft cheese on top of cucumbers. The spiciness of the Mini Peppers rescued the dish from being mediocre.

Tomme Katom

Tomme Katom

Mini Red Peppers

Mini Red Peppers

Then, we were served a Plate of cheese with homemade bread (Passover Kosher). We wish we could share with you the name of the cheeses on the plate but unfortunately, this information wasn’t shared with us as well. We can only say that some of them were really good, especially the hard and spicy cheeses.

Plate of cheese

Plate of cheese

In addition to the above we also ordered Goat cheese Pizza (again Passover Kosher dough), that was surprisingly more tasty then our expectations and Hagar in the oven – Camembert cheese served on top of potatoes slices with yogurt & garlic sauce.  This dish was a bit 80’s like but the quality of the cheese gave it a special kick.

Pannna Cota

Pannna Cota

For dessert we took Goat Pannna Cota that was a thicker version of the Yael drink.

Overall and although the service was lacking, we were quite satisfied with the quality of the restaurant in the middle of the desert – which we defiantly didn’t expect to find. We will not go there especially, but on our way to Eilat we will definitely consider it.

The Check Please (4 people)
4 X Yael – 68 NIS
Tomme Katom – 33NIS
Mini Red Peppers  -21NIS
Cheese Plate – 57 NIS
Goat Cheese Pizza – 37
Hagar in the oven – 39 – NIS
Pannna Cota  – 21NIS

All in all 278NIS

Summary:

Food: Vegetarian – Goat cheeses
Price: Medium
Location: Negev (Road 40, Tlalim)

The Cizer-Kobrinsky Scale:

3.5 Forks

Contact Details: Korenmehl Goat Cheese Farm
Address:  Korenmehl Farm, Negev Highland, Northern Negev | Phone: 08-6555140 |
Daily 10:00-18:00 (but call to make sure it’s open)
http://kornmehlfarm.ramon.gonegev.co.il/english.asp

Was (not) Born in the USA

17 Mar

But it doesn’t mean I can’t write about it… Last month I was in the US for a business trip. I started in Seattle where I had attended Microsoft’s conference – TechReady 14 – an amazing experience with the best sessions on the newest technology.  But eating in Seattle is not something the write about. We did eat at the Cheesecake factory and Ruth’s Chris and hang a lot at the Tap House Grill (which seems to be the only place to drink beer after 10 PM).

But the interesting culinary staff happens in New York. On my way home I did stopped in New York for a short vacation.  I wanted to share with you several places I liked.

New York, New York

New York, New York

Topaz Thai Restaurant

I had arrived to the city in the late afternoon and I was hungry. I wanted something tasty and close by. The nice girls in the reception of Wellington Hotel recommended on Topaz – Thai restaurant located on the 56th street. For starter I received a kind of complimentary potato chips that were served with a very tasty Thai sauce based on peanuts. For main dish I ordered traditional Thai dish of stir-fried rice. Nice restaurant if you are around and looking for an oriental bite.

Topaz Thai Restaurant
127 W 56th St (between Avenue Of The Americas & 7th Ave), New York, NY 10019

Saju Bistro

On the next day I was walking around Times Square, looking for breakfast, a real one, not eating something on the street while standing. I sat on the bar for brunch at Saju Bistro and ordered the Eggs Florentine that was served with English muffins, Fresh Spinach and Hollandaise sauce. That was exactly what I was looking for; alongside with fresh orange juice I was ready to start my morning in New York.

Saju Bistro
120 W 44th Street New York, NY, 10036 | http://www.sajubistro.com/

Eggs Florentine @Saju Bistro

Eggs Florentine @Saju Bistro

Lombardi’s Pizza

On that evening I had tickets to the Spider-Man show – “Turn off the dark” on Broadway. Beforehand I had to eat something and since I was already in little Italy I thought pizza would be the best choice. Lombardi’s Pizza is a well-known institute since 1905. The place has a very warm atmosphere and the tables have the traditional white and red maps. The pizza itself was very good (and huge for one person). Note that they will not accept credit card, so be prepared with cash.

Lombardi’s Pizza
32 Spring St, New York, NY 10012 | (212) 941-7994 |http://www.firstpizza.com/

Since 1905 - Lombardi's Pizza

Since 1905 - Lombardi's Pizza

Balthazar

For the second breakfast I decided to check another well-known institute on Soho (not far away from the previous one) – Balthazar. While seating there I couldn’t help comparing the place to the Israeli Brasserie of R2M, it seems that I have found their inspiration. Nevertheless, it didn’t reduce any of my pleasure eating their Eggs Benedicts and drinking their amazing espresso.

Balthazar
80 Spring Street, New York, NY 10012 | (212) 965-1414 | http://balthazarny.com/

Did someone said Brasserie?

Did someone said Brasserie?

Eggs Benedicts

Eggs Benedicts

Trattoria Dell’arte

The last place I visited, just before getting back home was Trattoria Dell’Arte. I was really in a hurry but since I got this recommendation from Shaul, I knew I had to check it. I took the “One Hundred and one layer lasagna” that is one of the place’s special dishes. Indeed that lasagna was exceptional and contained many layers of pasta. Another specialty of the place is their antipasto bar that I didn’t have the chance to check.

My Windows Phone 7 and One Hundred and One Layer Lasagna

My Windows Phone 7 and One Hundred and One Layer Lasagna

Trattoria Dell’arte
900 7th Avenue, New York, NY 10106 | (212) 245-9800 | http://www.trattoriadellarte.com/

If I have to sum my short visit to New York – I had very good luck with the restaurants and the weather and sure hope to visit there again soon.

Off Topic – Italy

22 Oct

We have just came back from a one week trip and have decided to blog about food outside of Tel Aviv and even outside of Israel – this post will be dedicated to our recommendations from Italy.

Florence

Polizia Municipale near the Duomo

Trattoria Mario – Small but famous for its low prices and good food. Definately wins the “Value for Money” badge for the trip (around 12EUR for main course). Get ready to stand in line. http://trattoria-mario.com/

Trattoria Mario

Value for Money Steak

La Giostra – That place was actually too fancy in our opinion and we didn’t really like it.  It does have unique dish of Pear Ravioli that we liked and other courses were generally OK. Even though, this place wins the “Not Enough Value for Money” badge (around 20EUR for a main course). http://www.ristorantelagiostra.com/frameset.html

Pear Ravioli

San Lorenzo food market– while walking through San Lorenzo district’s streets one cannot miss the stands selling souvenirs. Nevertheless, you can esily miss the indoor food market located in the heart of the market. The market has a few restaurants in it but the real interesting experience is of course the stands with the fresh goodies.

Porcini

Different Kinds of Lettuce

If you know what this vegetable is – kindly let us know

Trattoria Nerone  – Next to our lovely hotel (Hotel Azzi) we found a trattoria that offers large veriaty of food alongside unique atmosphere and indoor design. We had a good steak and the best pizza we ate in Italy (We didn’t eat so much pizza so take it as a limited recommendation). http://www.trattorianerone.it

The Best Pizza

Pisa

“Mama” – As we travelled we felt a passion to find an authentic restaurant. In Pisa, while looking for another restaurant (no success there) we accidentally came across a small place with a real Italian Mama, cooking with her husband the last 40 years while their son is working as the waiter. We don’t know the name of the place (nor does it have a name), but on the door your will see “Degustazione Prodotti tipici Toscani Solo Buongustai” which mean “Tasting, local Products, Tuscany, Only Gourmet”. The place is located in a small alley named Via Tavoleria and if the place is open you’ll probably find it. The food was good but not amazing, yet if you’re looking for the “real” experience you should definately go there.

Tasting, local Products, Tuscan, Only Gourmet

Traditional Pasta

Rome
We were lucky to find a place in the heart of the historical center, next to the Pantheon – Charming Miniflat. From the apartment we were only few minutes away from everything.

The view from the Spanish stairs

Campo dei Fiori – Very touristic market but gives you sneak peek to Italy’s fresh products.

Campo Dei Fiori

Sant’Eustachio Il Caffé – The Best coffee we had in Italy (which probably say the best we had at all). Try their Gran-Caffe. http://www.santeustachioilcaffe.it/en/

The Jewish quarter – A part from the cooking class we took (see next recommendation) we were taken to a tour in the old Jewish ghetto that has an authentic atmosphere. Try the families’ bakery and you will not be disappointed.

Fresh from the Oven

The Jewish Quarter

BA" GHETTO Restaurant (Word Game of "In the Ghetto" and "Baguette"). Not so politically correct

Fabulous Cooking Day – THE best activity we had in Italy. The class started in the morning when we took the tour to the Jewish ghetto and bought goodies in Campo dei Fiori. Then we met Fabio, our chef, in his restaurant near the Spanish steps and walked with him to his amazing apartment nearby.  In his kitchen we learned how to make Pasta, Lasagna, Risotto and Chicken. The outcome was simply outstanding and delicious. Bottomless wine supply helped us digest the rewarding lunch. Don’t miss it! http://www.fabiolouscookingday.com/

You will need at least 6 hands to make pasta

Donny & Rob Making Pasta with Fabio

Cooking with Fabio

The result (one of them…)

TAZZA D’ORO – One of the most famous coffee in the world, Lockley our apartment was located just above their main store in Rome. http://www.tazzadorocoffeeshop.com/

The famous coffee

Osteria Dell’Angelo – Good steak on the grill. Pay cash only. http://www.tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_Review-g187791-d792990-Reviews-Osteria_dell_Angelo-Rome_Lazio.html

Due Ladroni – Quite different from the “Touristic” veriaty of restaurants (in a good way). Comparing to all the above this one is quite expensive (20-25 EUR for a main course), but definately worth it for celebrating our last day in Italy. http://www.dueladroni.com/

We hope you will enjoy our recommendations and you’re welcome to add yours as well in the comments.

Shahar & Inbar

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