When Daniella mentioned that there was an 'amazing new ice cream place' just down the street from her apartment which her pastry chef friend swore was 'the best ice cream in the city,' we were nevertheless skeptical. With 'gourmet' ice cream popping up on every corner, the last thing Tel Aviv needed was more. Still, we're not folks to turn down an ice cream offer, so we headed down Frishman Street to see what all the fuss was about.
Handmade on site from all natural and seasonal ingredients, without any added preservatives or artificial flavours, Zeisale's name (Yiddish for sweetie) and décor are not the only throwbacks to a slower, tastier time.
The vanilla is astoundingly…vanilla-y…a common result of the increasingly uncommon practice of using the actual vanilla bean. The hazelnut tastes, well yes, just like the creamy nut, and the fruit flavours are all as fresh and authentic as can be.
The first time around, with Daniella leading the way, I opted for the yoghurt. Prepared like ice-cream, giving it an appealing texture to which soft serve can not compare, this tart, delicious creation is also available with a variety of toppings. Idan, overwhelmed by abundance of all his favourite flavours (he's a white chocolate, cheesecake, caramel sort of fellow), took almost 10 minutes to settle on toffee and cheesecake.
On another visit, Idan decided to finally overcome the temptation of a multi-scoop cup and choose just a single flavour for a milkshake. Apparently, white chocolate orange was the correct decision, as it disappeared while I was still only half way through my incredible pomegranate sorbet with bits of pistachio. The sorbet is one of the seasonal specials in honour of Rosh Hashanah, along with equally exciting and delectable flavours like honey cake ice cream, honey apple ice cream, and the yoghurt flavour, topped with apple, seasonal fruit and pomegranate syrup.
And speaking of the upcoming high holidays, Zeisale has also got all natural candy apples on offer (these stunning creations on cinnamon stick are a far cry from the fluorescent red of your childhood).Get these grown up candy apples, along with a selection of baked good (all on site, of course) this Friday, September 26th when Zeisale is throwing a pre-holiday party complete with music, samples and a few festive surprises. Come one, come all!
Not only is the ice cream truly the best in the city, but the space is more café than shop, making it a lovely place to sit and enjoy. Additional delicious offerings include handmade pastries, desserts and even some sweet breakfasts – including a peanut butter and banana sandwich which proves that in addition to bearing my childhood nickname (what, your grandparents called you zeisale too?), Zeisale really is a sweet shop after my own heart.
20 Reines St., at the corner of Frishman, Tel Aviv.