About 3 weeks ago I thought I'd go to Paris. We found the city maps from our last trip, made sure our passports were valid and even called that small hotel where we stayed before, to reserve a room. Within a few days, as we realized we couldn't make it, and I was left with a true hunger for gourmet cheese and romantic atmosphere.
Efrat, a friend from Tel Aviv, suggested I'd come for a visit, enjoy some fresh sea air and eat French food. I couldn't say no, and we ended up at Pres de la mer, a recently opened restaurant on HaYarkon Street. The wooden floor, tables covered with red maps and melodic music reminded me of Paris, and I though, so what if I can't make it.
Pres de la mer specializes in French cuisine and offers a rich menu. I had a little trouble choosing my appetizer, so eventually I took the waitress' recommendation of stuffed and caramelized forest mushrooms. They were big, juicy, fresh from the Carmel market, deep fried and spiced with classic cream sauce. Efrat ordered the dried black plums that were stuffed with chopped beef and laid in onion and cream sauce – all sweet and surprising.
It was time to try the salmon filet with peppers in cream sauce. The fish portion that came with tiny potatoes and garlic butter was juicy and well made. It was spiced with delicate pepper sauce that made it esthetically beautiful, still it didn't overshadow the taste of the dish. Once that I was done with the fish, I was reminded of those fresh rolls that we were received when we were seated, now it helped me leave my plate clean.
On the other side of the table, Efrat ordered a big dish of grilled spring chicken with lemon, mint and butter; the pieces were served on a beautiful thyme skewer.
Pres de la mer is a true French restaurant where each dish is cooked to perfection. Business meals are served here from 12-17, during the weekends it's advised to reserve a table in advance.