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Veranda: Fine kosher cuisine with a view of Jerusalem’s Old City

SC 19/08/2021 5


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As you are ushered to your table at Veranda, the new restaurant at the David Citadel Hotel, you look over a blue swimming pool at the spectacular walls of Jerusalem’s Old City.
“Wow,” was the first word that came to my mind. The view alone is a reason to dine at Veranda – but the atmosphere, food and service are all “wow,” too!
Chef Aviram Hayuka, a native Jerusalemite, says he was inspired by what he calls the authentic home cooking of his mother and grandmother, and he aims to integrate them with the tastes and aromas of Jerusalem.

Hayuka, who has worked with other top chefs such as Meir Adoni, starred in the first season of the popular television series Game of Chefs.
“My roots are Kurdish and Moroccan,” he says. “I grew up with both. Asking which I like better is like asking who I love more, my mother or father. Everything I do is related to my roots, but I am honored and thrilled to work in a hotel of the caliber of the David Citadel, especially because it’s in Jerusalem.”
Among the dishes he has introduced in Veranda’s menu are Kadeh siska (a Kurdish pastry filled with slow-cooked beef and served with a tangy tofu yogurt, NIS 48), Jerusalem arancini (rice kubbeh filled with a mushroom mixture and spiced with Jerusalem mixed grill seasoning, on tehina and charred tomato salsa (NIS 46), and pita filled with Jerusalem spiced veal kebab with charred tomato salsa (NIS 58).
For starters, my partner and I chose the Grilled eggplant carpaccio, which was superbly seasoned with tehina, garlic confit, pomegranate molasses, olive oil, scallions and cranberries (NIS 43), and Sea fish tartare – diced fish served with cilantro, green apple, chives, purple onion, spicy pepper, cucumber salad and strips of pickled zucchini and tofu tzatziki (NIS 60). Both were excellent, especially the eggplant, although I am told that the beef carpaccio, sweetbreads and root vegetable gnocchi are outstanding, too.
 A beef fillet from Jerusalem's Veranda (credit: ANATOLY MICHAELO) A beef fillet from Jerusalem’s Veranda (credit: ANATOLY MICHAELO)
The main course does not comprise too many choices, but each one is tempting: Veal schnitzel served with leafy greens and mashed potatoes (NIS 109), Beef fillet in red wine on creamed root vegetables, served with bone marrow-stuffed falafel (NIS 179), Sea fish fillet with freekeh risotto, vine-ripened tomatoes, Kalamata olives, herbs and olive oil (NIS 108), Salmon in a curry crust, served with Jerusalem artichoke confit, cream of spinach and beetroot and lemon juice (NIS 98), Chicken thigh cutlet served on beluga lentils, herbs and cranberries (NIS 89), Entrecôte with roast potatoes, garlic confit and warm chimichurri (NIS 190), and lamb chops with black risotto, tomatoes and spinach (NIS 220).
We chose the recommended Beef fillet in red wine, which was absolutely delicious, and the Salmon in a curry crust, which was tasty but not as good as the meat.
For dessert, we ordered Semolina served with coconut sorbet, and Cremo chocolate with nougat, both of which were yummy.
If you want to celebrate a special occasion or enjoy fine kosher dining while surveying Jerusalem’s Old City at night, this is the place!
Veranda
David Citadel Hotel
7 King David Street, Jerusalem
Tel: (02) 548-2230
Kosher, Jerusalem Rabbinate
The writer was a guest of the restaurant.

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Co-Host for Coffee Mouth Scarecrow Show. Retired NAVY Chief/Flag Writer Psalms 118:24 This is the day which the LORD hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.

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