So after giving you the heads up on how things work in Tel-Aviv, I would like to share with you a list of a few of Tel-Aviv’s gems, and my personal favorites. In this post I will focus on cafes located in the city center, all with a pretty laid back atmosphere, and each with its unique vibes and concept.
Voted as one of the best cafes (and best place for breakfast) in Tel-Aviv by several magazines, this is definitely one of the coolest cafes in the city. Located on Gordon street, very close to the beach, Xoho is colorful, eclectic and vibrant with some indoor murals, beautiful tiles, paper products you can purchase, and a nice out doors sitting area. The service is super friendly, and as you will notice, it is very cosmopolitan. The odds are, non of your waiters is actually Israeli, and neither are most of the other guests. The food is delicious, vegan friendly, and with a Mexican theme (though other options are available as well). Their desserts, are to die for (try their chocolate chip M&M cookies), and the coffee is great too (sometimes served with quinoa milk!)! If you don’t have much time in the city, this is a definite must go to place. Note that often times, and especially during the summer, it is packed and might be hard to get a table (they don’t do reservations). Also, during most week days (expat for Mondays, when the place is closed) the place is only open till 6:30pm, and it closes even earlier during the weekend.
Photo by: Zoe Komarin
Located near the bustling Dizengoff street, Lieselotte offers a super cute vintage interior and a big, yet cozy, garden out front. This place is famous for its breakfasts and delicious(!) pastries (including babkas and giant chocolate chip cookies). It is has a casual atmosphere to it, is work and laptop friendly, and the service is very pleasant. As it is a popular place, especially during breakfast and brunch, you might have to wait in order to be seated. This place is open till much later, and you can also visit it for an evening cup of coffee, or an alcoholic beverage (it closes at 11pm daily).
Bucke is a relatively new cafe, founded in the city center in 2014 (and since has opened a second branch in the city’s Old North, which is slightly smaller, but just as good). The (original) location near Habima square has a big sitting area out doors, and also quite a few seating options inside. It is a colorful cafe with an eclectic yet thoughtful decor. It’s a great place to work from, yet it’s also a good place to just sit and relax, taking your coffee with a little something sweet on the side (and there are quite a few yummy options, including chocolate chip cookies, banana bread etc). They also serve “real” food – my favorite dish is their vegan burger. Another good option is one of their platters, which comes either as a plate for a single person, or for 2 people to share. This place is also pretty full most of the time, and you might have to wait in order to get a table. Note that it closes at 4pm on Fridays, and doesn’t open at all on Saturdays.
This heap cafe is located in the city center, pretty close to Rothschild Boulevard. Shmanmonet, translates to “chubby” (for females), and though it has a slightly alarming connotation in Hebrew, I believe it reflects the fact that this place tries to give Tel-Avivians an alternative to the coffee scene, not being too PC or apologetic about doing things their way. It offers a few seating options in doors, such as a communal table, a cozy corner, a bar and some “regular” tables, as well as a few tables outside. The place is colorful and has a bit of an urban decay vibe to it, which is somehow combined with a very chic atmosphere. Their desserts are to die for, and so are their pancakes!
With great food, a friendly vibe, a big terrace out front, where you can sit, and a great location in the city center, Cafe Lucia is one of my favorite spots in the city. It’s a great place to work from, as well as a nice hangout place. The vibe is laid back, the decor is cute, yet clean and effortless. Another thing I like about this place, is that it is actually located on a residential street, which makes it relatively quite, and was also a pleasant surprise when I first discovered it. This is a true hidden gem. Note that this place is closed on Saturdays.
Though it is located on Allenby street, one of Tel-Aviv’s main streets (offering cheap shops and close to the market), Edmond manages to stay a quiet and relaxing spot. Their secret is that you actually need to step into a back yard of a building, and then you find yourself in a hidden garden. This place is all style – with cool tiles, hanging plants, a wooden bar and wall, and a mixture of hand picked items, with some vintage flare. This is a pretty hipster place, with a slightly ragged atmosphere. They have amazing pastries as well as a lot of vegan options, and also some health food. Unlike most places in Tel-Aviv, here you need to order over the counter, and then the food will be served. Go take a look if you want to be one of the cool ones. Though don’t try to go there on Saturdays, they are closed.
Hope you enjoy!
Till next time,