Lunch time at Herzliya Pituach feels like a giant dining room opening its gates for thousands of starving high-tech workers in-between code writing and a playstation game. The supply is big enough, the boss pays the bill – economic slowdown, anyone?
But there's a catch to it. It seems that because of the continuous fight over those high-tech geeks that has left many bankrupt restaurants, the remaining restaurateurs have come together to offer a lesser product for the same price. How many times in the past year did you stumble across the same offers in every restaurant you went to? Have you noticed the eggplant in tahini and lamb kebab on cinnamon stick everywhere? Of course, there's no way of knowing if I'm right, and you should consider this a joke.
But when we were told about the reopening of the ancient French establishment Entrecote de Paris on Shenkar Street, we rushed there. Because everybody in Paris (and Marseille, Bordeaux, London and New York) knows that these guys are totally committed to their culinary tradition and that they do not follow any trends that would affect their quality.
Late at night, this area in Herzliya gets tidier. Most of the high-tech workers leave their buildings, and the rest of us, who come here to enjoy the good food, ambiance and the one thing we can no longer find in Tel Aviv – parking space – feel free to come.
As mentioned, this new-old branch that was recently opened is called Bistro and Wine (some people here call it Bistro W). We started out with some dishes that felt as though they chose us more than we have them. Soft Foie Gras au Torchon – a name following the traditional cooking method, in which the liver is cooked wrapped in a towel that keeps its shape. After the cooking and cleaning process it is sliced and served with onion chutney and small caramelized apple. It is unbelievably tender. We also enjoyed burnt fresh fillets of Red Mullet, casually laid on grilled crostini. We also tried some beef Carpaccio with olive oil stripes and dried herbs, on top of which garden vegetables that were obviously picked in Eden.
When it's time for our main courses, the waiter says-asks: "Entrecote?" especially here, this word entails a very deep meaning. This entrecote is loyal to the original dish developed by chef Paul Gineste de Saurs back in the 1950s. The sirloin cut (yes, sirloin is the meaning of entrecote in France), is first lightly burnt on a heavy pan, and then continues to cook in a secret dressing. The components of this secret dressing are indeed very secret. From foreign publications we can say that they include thyme flowers, Dijon mustard and three chansons. It is finally sliced in front of us, and brought to the table in an almost religious ceremony: half of it is laid on the plate, with generous amounts of Steak Frites, while the rest of the meat slices remain dipped in sauce, in a silver bath on a heating device. The cooking method, the serving and the sauce of this flag dish are unbelievable.
We had to share Tournedos Rossini that was created for the great opera composer (The Barber of Seville). Legend has it that he too was a great cook and eater. This dish is composed of fillet medallion made to perfection, wearing a hat of Foie Gras, laid on brioche tartlet with root vegetables, next to sweet-spicy sauce.
The entire meal was accompanied by Bistro and Wine house wine, cabernet sauvignon by Arfi Winery, which was a wonderful surprise. For dessert we had coffee and a fine chocolate profiterole. What a bliss.