Opera is one of those institutions in Hadera that seem to have been there forever. You walk into a place that is a cross between someone?s large kitchen and a kibbutz dinning hall. Tables and chairs are disbursed throughout the hall.
Located in the center of town on HaNassi Street, one of Hadera?s main streets, you can sit and watch the comings and going of the city while you eat. Free parking is available around the corner, behind the restaurant on HaGiborim Street and on city streets (but on the streets, be sure that you use a Hadera parking card!).
The food picks up where the ambiance may leave you wanting. The restaurant is basically a Yemenite eating establishment, but there is plenty to choose from. Try the humus and salads, kubeh, the musaka or maybe just a stuffed pepper.
The melawach at the Opera is so popular that it is already sold in freezer sections of supermarkets throughout the country. If you do not know what melawach is, it is time for you to find out and the king of melawach of Hadera is the place to start.
The melawach, a form of Yemenite pita, arrives hot and first timers should be warned to be careful of the escaping steam when tearing it open. The melawach here, arrived with a ground tomato sauce. Connoisseurs know that the schug (Yemenite "fountain of youth" hot sauce) sitting inconspicuously on each table, is to be added.
We started our lunch meal for two with a ?Yemenite beef soup? that arrived promptly; hot and full of the aromas of the exotic spices used to prepare it. The soup, in itself is a meal, but we were hungry and so we also ordered a melawach and a steak. The melawach arrived immediately and together with the soup. We shared both between us.
The steak arrived shortly thereafter. Not a western 2 1/2 inch thick steak, but your common Israeli cut. The steak was quite tender and tasty and was served with pita, fresh homemade French fries (chips) and a side order of vegetable salad. We had no room for the coffee with hawaij (not just cardamom!) and baklava that could be had for dessert.
For 120 shekels we had our meal (which sufficed for both of us) and we also took home two Yemenite soups for our kids.
A sampling of prices is as follows Kubeh 5 NIS, Melawach 15NIS, Steak 35NIS, Soups 20-23NIS, Musaka 16NIS, Hummus 12NIS, Salads 7NIS. Stuffed vegetables 16NIS.