Not just Spaghetti

The salmon fillet was expertly cooked, soft, succulent and full of flavor with a touch of garlic and presented on a bed of either mashed potatoes or green beans.

When I was training for my first marathon, pasta played an important role in my basic diet. Simple, quick and nutritious, it provided all the essential vitamins, minerals and carbohydrates to keep me going. While my efforts to maintain a consistent training schedule have since then have been poor, my love for pasta hasn’t died. While it is not difficult to be creative with this basic dish, it is usually accompanied by a simple, tomato, pesto or cream sauce. However, the menu at Spaghettim, manages to be both inspiring and to take this dietary staple to new heights.

Located on the corner of King George and Shderot Ben Zion, across from the mythological Dizengoff Center, the restaurant offers a refreshing refuge from the hustle and bustle of downtown Tel Aviv. The elegant and relaxing d?cor of the top floor, together with an informal and well stocked bar create the perfect atmosphere for a pleasant evening out. There is also a second floor downstairs, with more seating available.

We arrived at around 20:00. Both of us tired, both of us hungry, after a long and hard day at work. We were pleasantly greeted by the staff and shown to our table. After ordering our drinks we turned our attention to the menu. Spaghettim offers two standard menus – the regular one and a “sports” oriented one, which contains mainly whole wheat pasta, presents fat content (in percentage) and is divided into pre and post-workout dishes. Since we both took the day off our heavy training schedule, we decided to opt for the regular menu.

For the first course we ordered the Panzanella Salad - a refreshing Tuscan summer bread salad with large pieces of fresh, ripe tomatoes, peppers, radishes, carrots, olives and croutons, topped with a splash of olive oil and wine vinegar (29 nis) and the focaccia – freshly baked and smelling wonderful (12 nis). Both were delicious and left us anticipating what was to come.

After some deliberation D. decided on the salmon fillet (59 nis). It was expertly cooked, soft, succulent and full of flavor with a touch of garlic and presented on a bed of either mashed potatoes or green beans. I chose the Sicilian Carbonara (47 nis), the cream-less “younger brother” of the classic Carbonara (a name meaning coal in Italian, probably due to the freshly ground black pepper used). Large chunks of bacon and ham were combined with olive oil, black pepper and nutmeg, to produce a delicious, light meal. Aside from spaghetti, one can also find homemade pizza, lasagna, gnocchi, ravioli, and tortellini, as well as a few classic Italian meat dishes such as escalope and chicken livers in a red wine sauce.

We were left with no room for dessert. But as a good friend of mine likes to say – “dessert is a separate stomach”. The waitress came around with a tray of around six sweet offerings. D and I decided to share the tiramisu (25 nis). What we received was heaven. A light dish of mascarpone cream, with biscotti soaked in espresso and brandy. Cool, refreshing and light, it was the perfect end to a summer’s meal.

King George 48, Tel Aviv