Set in cozy 19th-century rooms lined with books, this place has an eccentric style, welcoming spirit, and one of the most interesting and well-prepared vegetarian menus in town. Among the specialties are spiced sweet-potato soup, pumpkin ravioli in herbed cream sauce, and a spicy tomato-and-egg shakshouka (a traditional Jerusalem recipe). There are hefty casseroles, salads, and sandwiches on house breads -- everything from bagels and lox with cream cheese to an elegant fresh trout stuffed with feta cheese served in a special orange sauce. You'll find lots of wines and interesting alcoholic and nonalcoholic drinks to linger over: teas, coffees, hot chocolate with rum, and even sahlab, a traditional Middle Eastern drink. Delicious cakes and Ben & Jerry's ice cream make this a good dessert stop as well. The cafe is a favorite of students and travelers of all ages (in the afternoon you can sit here for hours or even bring your laptop); it's gay-friendly and at night it's even a popular first-date choice for religious Israelis. There are often evening readings or talks in Hebrew or English, plus live music. Stop by and pick up the monthly schedule of events.
- © Frommer's 2013
- Recommended 2010