"Before we could even say the words 'green parsley', warm fat pitas were already being placed on the table, along with colourful salads like tomato salsa, mock liver made of eggplant and bulgur mixed with fresh finely chopped parsley…" Natalie Raz visited Petrozilia (Parsley) in Tel Aviv and learned wonderful new things about the familiar herb.
We got to Petrozilia ('Parsley' in English) on a Friday afternoon after a busy morning at work. We were hungry and looking for the ideal place to sit, relax, eat and leave feeling full and satisfied. We decided on Petrozilia, a kosher grill bar on Rothschild Boulevard, were everything is made from scratch. The restaurant is open everyday until 19:00, at which time it closes its doors to become a private event hall. Most of Petrozilia's customers are business people who come on a regular basis on their lunch breaks to take advantage of the rich and varied business specials menu. The restaurant is decorated in shades of natural green and has large windows, allowing one to watch all the afternoon comings and goings on Rothschild Boulevard. The restaurant's kitchen is semi-open, which allowed us feel that something sure was cooking there…
We were seated at a wood table and before we could even say the words 'green parsley', warm fat pitas were already being placed on the table, along with colourful salads like tomato salsa, mock liver made of eggplant and bulgur mixed with fresh finely chopped parsley. The service here is most certainly quick and polite. After some snacking (to calm our hungry bellies) we ordered some starters: hummus with meat and a fresh green salad. The hummus came covered in bits of fried ground meat, ful (broad beans), pine nuts, red paprika and parsley. The salad came chopped, fresh, colourful, and, of course, dressed in parsley, which lent the dish a very refreshing taste.
After a short break (that mostly included chatting about the starters), we ordered our mains. I chose the house kebab and my girlfriend selected the entrecote skewer. The kebab, properly seasoned and a little bit spicy (and yes, containing parsley), was accompanied by the scent of the grill and had a lovely soft texture. Along with the kebab came velvety mashed potatoes, with a soft buttery flavour (even though, as a kosher restaurant, we knew they're not using any butter here), and was covered with a few bits of fried onion. My girlfriend, whose entrecote skewers came with majadra, enjoyed every bite and pointed out that "right now, we need to sit in silence for a few minutes, to listen and invest our thoughts in every bit." Right…so, I shut up.
We sat back, full and satisfied, and thought about a sweet end to such a succulent meal. "Do you think that the desserts here also come with parsley?" I jokingly asked my girlfriend. "Why not", she answered, "could you resist a little parsley sorbet?"…But, when it comes to the desserts, it seems that the chefs decided to put aside the parsley motif for a few moments, and instead we got to dig in to a deep dish of 3 types of nut covered mousse: exotic passion fruit, in which we felt the exploding crunch of the passion fruit seeds in every bite, bittersweet chocolate mousse and cold halvah mousse. All three melted in our mouths and quickly disappeared from the plate.
In summary, a few important facts that we didn't know about parsley, which comprises the central ingredient in the restaurant: 1. Parsley is rich in vitamins A and C, and also in iron. 2. This herb has medicinal properties; it can reduce indigestion and bad breath and lower blood pressure. 3. In ancient Rome and Greece, they would chew parsley after meals to freshen breath. So…should we order some…?
Petrozilia (Parsley)47 Rothschild Boulevard, Tel AvivTel: 03-5162468