I suggested we would meet up, only he had some very specific conditions: 1. Falafel, 2. Hummus, 3. Tahini, 4. Shawarma
A good friend returned to Israel after a 5 year stay in Canada. Accept for one short homeland visit during this period of time, I did not get to meet him at all, not counting Facebook updates. As soon as he was back in his parents' house, in a small community in the south of the country, I suggested we would meet up, only he had some very specific conditions: 1. Falafel, 2. Hummus, 3. Tahini, 4. Shawarma. Not an easy guy indeed, still, this is exactly the type of food it is hard to find outside of Israel.
With all due respect, I have decided we would skip this time the falafel and Shawarma stands, so that we can catch up while sitting down. Friends who live in Beer Sheva recommended Avaz Hazahav. And it's not that this town is missing any restaurants, it's just that here I found everything I was looking for: young vibe, comfortableness, accessibility, and most importantly: falafel, hummus, tahini and shawarma.
Spontaneously, we walked in, no reservations asked, and soon enough we were found a nice corner table. Avaz Hazahav's tables can sit 4 diners, and with the number of plates coming out of the kitchen, it is better so. - Can I get you any salads? - Sure, and please get us every Israeli dish on the menu.
The salad bowls came pretty fast: beets, carrots, finely chopped vegetables with coriander, matbucha, Turkish salad, red cabbage in mayonnaise, white cabbage, corn and eggplants. We also got some less conventional ones, such as egg salad, pickled fennel, and green tahini, chopped liver and avocado salad. We ate them all with pleasure, with the help of hot laffa bread, recommended by the waitress, which was seasoned with hyssop. She also recommended the home-fries and the soft falafel balls that were served with tahini.
As if we were not feeling patriotic enough, we shared 3 main courses between us: goose fillet skewer that was juicy, well-done and aggressively spiced. The sweetbread skewer was soft, tasty and melted in the mouth. But the true hit was probably the shawarma that was served on a bed of soft hummus. The main problem at this point was our capacity, but we managed to get over it and have espresso, tea and some ice cream scoops.
The distance is a little too big for me, but my friend who now lives in the area will be back for sure; then maybe I will come for a visit.