Let's start with a disclosure: there is no family relationship between Adam Bar and Nana Bar. And now that we've taken this off the table, there is this dilemma – what should we start with? Nana Bar is an establishment in Tel Aviv. On several occasions it was titled "the best restaurant in Tel Aviv", and "most romantic restaurant in Tel Aviv" – a reputation which is hard to keep up with. Recently a group of entrepreneurs decided to give this place a facelift, and we came for a visit.
Right at the entrance, we were happy to see that the new owners did not change the styling at all. The old Neve Tzedek space, with its hidden corners, chandeliers, beautiful bathroom, private room and amazing back yard is still the same.
The restaurant is still working on a test-run menu, which means it is rather short. But this turns out to be an advantage, as the heartache accompanying each missed out on dish is almost avoided. Since we got there hungry, we nibbled on the wonderful fresh bread with butter and spiced olives. You cannot give up on these.
We started with the chopped liver and tomato salad. The tomato salad was colorful and refreshing, based on a variety of cherry tomatoes, shallots, croutons, basil, oregano and ricotta salata, which is a stiff salty version of the regular ricotta. But the true star of our starters was undoubtedly the chopped liver. It was fresh, enriched with olive oil, lightly spiced with parsley and shatta pepper, generously spread on dark bread, far better than any other Pâté. And for those of you who come from far away – yes, this chopped liver is worth the trip over. We had Vitkin's Israeli Voyage red wine with those, it is a rich fruity blend based on Carignan, Syrah and Cabernet Franc.
For our mains we ordered sirloin cuts and the Nana burger. The sirloin cuts were grilled, and then served with horseradish crème fraîche and grilled root vegetables. This is a very daring dish that captivated my heart and taste buds. The burger was not as daring, but still included a few unconventional twists: the meat ingredients (60% shpondra and 40% rump steak), the spicy Roquefort on top, spicy mayonnaise sauce, and even a side dish of double fried rosemary fries.
We were cozy enough when it was time for dessert, so we got one semifreddo crème brûlée. They know here the one thing others would not even mention: the best part of the crème brûlée is its sugar glazing. This was a double two layered crème brûlée, with berry sauce on top that provided it with a richer taste. It was a wonderful end for a wonderful meal.