The newly redecorated and updated Lilith restaurant in Asia House (near the corner of Weitzman and Shaul Hamelech Streets) continues to please and surprise. This popular Restaurant has opened a bakery café on the premises and a bistro restaurant in Raanana. No longer just Lilith, now that they are a group of restaurants they are called Liliyot.
Events and Celebrations at Liliyot Restaurant
The space at Liliyot Restaurant is invested and beautifully decorated. The décor is sleek and modern with tables that are well spaced, a full bar and a separate meeting room suitable for parties or business dinners. Seating is on chairs, couches or a combination of both.
Many things have changed at Liliyot. The restaurant is under new ownership and new management. The new chef Noam Dekers who comes to Liliyot with impressive credentials, has introduced a new menu with many twists, and the restaurant has a new décor. But one thing still remains: Liliyot continues its affiliation with the ELEM organization, providing a teaching and nurturing environment for needy young people. See below.
View a short clip about Liliyot restaurant:
Chef Noam Dekers
When we took our seats at the restaurant, we were presented with two one-page menus: the standard menu and a special summer menu. The menus are simple: there is a section of starters and a section of main dishes. Each section has something for meat eaters, fish eaters and people who prefer vegetarian dishes. The prix fixe (120 shekels per person) summer menu emphasizes salads in the starter section, with a cold beet root soup for the warm weather. The standard menu is a la carte, and has more serious fare. We were tempted by dishes on both menus, but unfortunately you aren’t allowed to mix and match.
We decided to start our meal with cocktails from the bar. We usually prefer wine with our meals, but on previous visits to this restaurant we learned to appreciate their bar man. So I chose a martini cocktail and my wife had something cool with lemon, fruit juice, mint and a just a bit of alcohol.
Looking around the restaurant, we were impressed by the variety of diners. There were couples out for a romantic evening, families with children and large tables with business associates. Meanwhile a party was being held in the restaurant’s party room separated from the restaurant by a divider. The dining room ran smoothly and the atmosphere was harmonious despite the disparate events.
Liliyot is truly an international restaurant. All of the staff that we encountered spoke an excellent English.
About the Quality Liliyot Menu
The description of the dishes in the menus make them sound deceptively simple, but don’t be fooled. They are exquisite combinations of quality ingredients enhanced with subtle use of herbs and fruits. We were off to a great beginning with a tray of the house breads, a dark rye and a soft focaccia with onions, and three dips: a creamy eggplant spread with a very subtle flavor, an olive oil and herb dip, and pickled vegetables.
For starters I enjoyed the grilled livers with a confiture of onions and dates with a Balsamic vinaigrette dressing. My wife had seared cod with a salad of celeriac (a green leafy vegetable), apples, pecans and red wine. Charoset, she said. We can’t take her anywhere. Both dishes were cooked perfectly. The fish was moist and fresh, seared dark on top but not rare or fishy inside. The livers were pink inside, and enhanced by the sweet and tangy onion preserves.
The signature appetizer and the one we really fell in love with was the very unusual fresh asparagus dish. The asparagus spears are accompanied by a poached egg and a mustard vinaigrette sauce, Turkish spinach and nuts. The asparagus was perfect - cooked to a crisp texture, and the egg and sauce was a lovely complement.
There are some serious steaks on the menu, including a grilled prime rib that comes on the bone in 600 gram sizes (for two people – not always available), but for my main course I went for a more unusual dish – Liliyot Shwarma on Lafa. The waitress recommended it, and promised that this was not street shwarma, which is what made me curious. She was right, and it was a good recommendation. The Liliyot Shwarma is not related in any way to the greasy turkey or veal wrapped in a large Iraqi pita. The Liliyot Shwarma is eaten with a fork and knife. It is not like a sandwich, but a pyramid of rib eye beef strips on a base of crispy focaccia, accompanied by fresh cooked tomato chunks and garnished with an herbal dressing. The dressing had a mild amount of pepper and a hint of coriander, which made the flavor interesting. It was lovely.
My wife had the mullet. This was served with garlic on a bed of rice with red peppers. The combination was outstanding. The fish was soft, well cooked and delicious.
The deserts were equally unique. Our waitress encouraged us to choose the peanut butter and strawberry jam sandwich, but we were going for the conventional. We shared a lemon meringue and a warm apple crumble with ginger ice cream. The first desert was a lemon cream on a base of cake crumbs with pecan chips, topped with a soft meringue that had been flamed to beautiful brown. Both the meringue and the lemon were soft and creamy, and set off perfectly by the crunchy pecan-crumb mix. The apple crumble was served hot, and topped with the cold ice cream to give a delightful mixture of temperatures and textures. The ginger flavor of the ice cream was very subtle, and did not overwhelm the dessert.
We were curious about what Liliyot could offer, to keep the children of the family happy, since the menu did not list children’s meals. The manager explained that the kitchen was flexible and inventive, and could always fix something based on what was available that day – schnitzel, a burger or pasta with tomato sauce. The children we saw there certainly were happy.
Even under its new management, Liliyot remains a teaching restaurant. It takes on 15 to 30 underprivileged young people and trains them in the culinary professions. In addition to working in the kitchen, the bakery and the bar mastering the various skills required in a very professional restaurant, these young people are taught responsibility, the work ethic and team skills. This effort is run jointly with ELEM - Youth in Distress. This was the first such initiative in the country, and one to be supported.
From the Liliyot brochure: "The restaurant has opened its doors and heart to the youth who have not received an equal opportunity and offers them a safe and supportive environment which enables them to acquire a meaningful career. ..These youngsters acquire vocational skills in the prestigious fields of the culinary world."
Starters run are about NIS 48. Main dishes are priced between from 76 for the Liliyot Shwarma to around NIS 150 for the steaks, depending on weight.