Travel Eating: England and Israel

The food: road food abroad

Fish & chips in London that did NOT hit the spot.

Excellent fries in Tel Aviv that did.

The story:

I recently returned from a trip to Israel via England. My husband E and I went overseas to visit our son Simon Farine, who’s in his first season playing pro basketball for the Maccabi Bazan Haifa team (go Haifa!). The trip included sightseeing, family bonding, no writing of any kind, and, of course, eating.

Not a stock photo! Taken by my very own E.

My boy Horatio Nelson presiding over in Trafalgar Square

Row houses in West Dulwich

After seeing the Group of Seven exhibit at the charming Dulwich Picture Gallery in south London, we went to a nearby chippie that is apparently both award-winning and fashionable (could have fooled me) called Olley’s. Our lunch there convinced us that a) we prefer the loose flakiness of haddock (pictured at top of post) to the tighter texture of halibut, and b) traditional English-style chips are a little too chunky, pale and firm for my taste. And I’m afraid to say that our restaurant meals in London over the next few days were not worth writing (home or anywhere else) about either.

We fared much better, food-wise, in Israel, land of sunshine, ancient history, and now, Simon.

Simon on his home court at Nesher in Haifa.

The view from our vacation rental apartment in Haifa.

The Roman Theatre at Caesarea near Haifa in Israel.

In Tel Aviv, I found the fries of my dreams at a fashionable (for real this time) yet casual seafood restaurant called Goocha, where E and Simon ate pricey but tasty salmon, and I had tender, cornmeal-dusted fried calamari:

Salmon at Goocha

Calamari from Goocha

We shared the soft, brown, deliciously greasy (good greasy) fries shown at top, and repeated here:

Excellent fries in Tel Aviv.

Our best meal in Israel though, was at Fattoush, a restaurant in Haifa’s pretty German Colony neighbourhood, downtown.

We sat on a pleasant outdoor terrace to eat amazing Israeli-style hummus, served with a pool of tahini and olive oil on top:

Fattoush Hummus Baladia with Tahini

With that, we had a delicious ‘calf’ (veal?) shawarma with handfuls of flat parsley and more tahini:

Fattoush Calf Shawarma

and the very fresh and crunchy Fattoush salad, made with chopped cucumber, tomatoes and fried pita pieces:

Fattoush salad at Fattoush

The food was so good (and reasonably priced, for Israel) that we went back a few days later, and admired the lovely Bahai Gardens just up the street.

Next time: finding good food back in England.

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4 thoughts on “Travel Eating: England and Israel

  1. Robin Spano says:

    The salmon and salad at Fattoush look delicious. Sorry about your rotten English food. I’m learning that the gastropubs are often the best meals that don’t require second mortgages.

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