Monday, July 7, 2014

Most talked-about hummus in Jaffa (and Israel)

While hummus, like most foods is a subjective matter, one of the most debated, appreciated, talked-about and recommended places for hummus is Abu-Hasan.
While other dishes tend to be easier to classify, hummus, being basically a mushy paste with toppings is a tad harder to pinpoint. Thus, there are several go-to hummus masters, venues and genres used to ease the definition of what you are eating.
Abu-Hassan is one of them, if not the main one.

This specific location is so popular that the owners opened another branch right across the street and they are both packed at all opening hours (although they start early).
They close the doors as soon as the hummus ends (rather than making new batches) which usually occurs in the early afternoon; you'll be lucky to visit around 15:00 and find any food left.

While hummus enthusiasts might pick other (obscure) places as their all time favorites, this hummus is a touchstone frequently name-dropped in every hummus discussion.
It's also hailed by most as the best hummus ever, the best msabbaha ever, and other titles of grandeur.

I had the pleasure of eating an early morning plate of hummus with fava beans, whole chickpeas and msabbaha (hot hummus mixed with tahini) just several day ago.
The food arrived to our table within a minute, and was delicious to say the least.

abu hasan msabbaha
It's even better than it looks

The food is great, they always deliver, within moments of your order and the prices are on the lower side of the hummus pricing scale.
There's aren't many options - this is a place you go to for hummus, with an addition of falafel and fries, but that's it. They're good at what they do and there's no need for new ventures.

The place is a must whether you're a tourist or just looking to grab a plate of good hummus.
It might not be your personal best as hummus styles vary, but you owe it yourself to try them at least once, and if you do ask for the triple dish (as seen in the picture) - to get a taste of several styles of hummus. 

Bottom line:
Location: clean, well lit, nicely designed, but quite loud - there's plenty of shouting from the staff, it's a thing
Staff: courteous and helpful, great and fast service
Pricing: relatively low
Food: some say it's the best hummus in the universe
Verdict: worth coming back to, again and again

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Grilled Cheese Sandwich @ QuickCafé Tel-Aviv

While going out for a much needed work brunch yesterday, a friend suggested we try the food at a nearby QuickCafé branch.
Surprised by the fact they offer actual food (a variety of noodles, rice based dishes, poultry, pasta and fish) and not just the sandwiches and pastry displayed on the counter, I decided a grilled cheese sandwich with tomatoes would suffice, especially since there was an additional salad.

Grilled cheese sandwich, and a freshly chopped cucumber, tomato, cabbage and carrot salad
Grilled cheese sandwich, and a freshly chopped cucumber, tomato, cabbage and carrot salad

The food was delicious, and there was an additional mini-dipping-bowl of mustard based vinaigrette that suited both the salad and the sandwich. I also asked for some tahini and they brought it in a shot glass which I found kinda funny.

The priced seemed a bit high at first, but when I got the plate I realized that it wasn't your ordinary panini.
All and all - a positive experience.

Bottom line:
Location: clean, well lit, nicely designed, but quite loud - being on a main road intersection.
Staff: courteous and helpful.
Verdict: will gladly return.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Falafel Baribua | Yad Harutzim 15, Tel-Aviv

Although named Falafel Baribua (which means square falafel), the venue (part of a chain) also offers quite the mean hummus - and a vegan take on shawarma (doner).

On this occasion I had a wonderful plate of hummus, with fava beans, chickpeas, tahini, parsley, olive oil and a garnish of paprika.
Complementary falafel and pickles were also provided.

hummus, broad beans, chickpeas, and tahini, with a side of falafel

While the price was rather costly for a plate of hummus - there were the added side dishes (albeit some places add them for free).
The service is great - but it tends to get confused if you choose to sit at the outside tables.

The place is clean and well designed, with a good lighting which really ads to the mood.
The service is really friendly, and the place itself is also vegan friendly which makes the experience even more positive.
Overall - the food is delicious and there's a vast menu considering this is a falafel based location.

Hummus Bahadunas | Yad Harutzim 11, Tel-Aviv

Bahadunas is a well known and rather popular hummus franchise, with most branches operating around the times people go to lunch and located near office populated areas.

They specialize in hummus and ful (fava \ broad beans), and are known for adding unorthodox toppings onto your hummus plate - they almost insist adding chopped onions (which horrify me) and propose salads and pickles as well. The pickles are actually a good option.

hummus, tahini, broad beans

In the image above is a plate of hummus, with ful, chickpeas, tahini, chopped parsley, olive oil, spicy coriander (cilantro) paste and obviously pickled cucumbers.
It was rather great, although it took more than a while to get my plate due to poor service skills.

The place is clean, well designed, not too costly and the slow service comes with a friendly smile.

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