I have been living in Jerusalem for the past 3 years, most of which I spend in the central, exciting part of the city. I usually walk around Ben Yehuda Street, where it always feels hectic.
Every once in a while, when the main road gets too busy, to avoid swimming my way through an ocean of people, I just turn to a side street, a typical Jerusalem alley that allows me some quiet moments. Dorot Rishonim alley follows 2 walls of buildings, decorated balconies and windows overlooking the center of the street, where some tables and chairs are scattered, all of which comprising Bolinat's sitting area. Bolinat is a small café and bar that changes according to demand, inviting those who just love to enjoy this special Jerusalem atmosphere.
Cool Jerusalem nights and warm Jerusalem days have been getting Bolinat going for 17 years; still, recently the restaurant was taken over by 2 friends Erez Sapir and Dor Sirkovich. These two plan to create a new, dynamic place that will bring a younger voice to the area.
My good friend and I visited Bolinat just a few days after the new menu was launched. We took a sit next to one of the tables scattered on the street, and were presented with it. Dishes here fit all hours – breakfasts and night meals, coffee and alcohol.
As it was hard to resist the fancy name, we started out with the Golden Eggs, which stood up to its expectations: 3 crispy coated scoops of potato puree and other surprises, resting in a ball of juicy sauce. This dish was served with roasted eggplant, served on a warm bed of tahini and yogurt cream, next to hot and fresh Moroccan style bread.
Our main courses came in perfect timing, and included a classic Cordon Bleu exposing a golden juicy chicken breast portion in a fried coating of panko crumbs, filled with Emmental cheese and a slice of Schinken in cream and sage sauce, all of this was served next to rich and thick homemade chestnut risotto.
We couldn't skip dessert, which was of course made on the premises: the house French toast was a guilty pleasure felt with every bite – a beautiful toast with white chocolate flakes, caramel, vanilla ice cream and berries.
Our visit to Bolinat was a wonderful experience that started out early and continued till late. The owners and staff's warm embrace prove just how much, like me, they love Jerusalem's calm atmosphere, hey, even the street cats are mesmerized by them.
Bolinat offers a 1+1 special on all draught beers between 17:00-21:00 on Sun-Thr and between 11:00-13:00 on Friday mornings. Regular clients are offered a club membership for only NIS10, which gives them and their guests a 10% discount. On top of that, Bolinat welcomes its audience with a variety of theme nights, such as beer festivals on Sundays and Friday lunch parties with the house DJ. It is also amazing to experience this place on Saturdays.