As a cosmopolitan city, Tel Aviv is home to a number of international and fine dining establishments. But if you really want to eat well, go for Israeli food. Israel is home to some of the freshest and tastiest produce in the world and the richest and most flavorful spices, making their version of the Mediterranean diet outrageously delicious.
Coffee Shops and Cafés: If you’re heading to Israel, you should know that breakfast and coffee breaks are extremely important. For breakfast, most cafés serve the standard Israeli breakfast—eggs, salad, bread, cheese, jam, juice, and coffee—for between 30 and 40 NIS. Yogurt with muesli is also a popular option. All of these ingredients can be purchased at local markets or found at any traditional café.
The two large coffee chains, Aroma and Cup O’Joe, both serve great coffee and food, but local, independent cafés are one of the most special parts of Tel Aviv. Check out Betty White Bistro near Ben Yehuda and Frischman or Café Sonia off of King George. Every café in the city will has Wi-Fi.
Tel Aviv is a coffee drinking city. People mainly drink espresso so American-style filtered coffee is rare. When ordering iced coffee, keep in mind that “iced café” is actually more like a frappucino coffee slushee and “cold café” is traditional iced coffee!
Israeli Street Food: Falafel, schwarma, sambousek, schnitzel and hummus eateries comprise the bulk of Israeli street food. Unlike many other countries’ street food, Israel’s street food is arguably its best cuisine. You cannot leave Tel Aviv without trying each of these foods at least once.
For the yummiest hummus in town, check out the world famous Abu Hassan hummus in Jaffa or Hummus Abu Dabi on King George. For some great late night spots, check out the 24-hour upscale Brasserie on Ibn Gvirol for one of the best burgers in town, the greasy American breakfast place Benedict’s at any of their locations, or the pizza place Tony Vespa’s near the Namal.
For more of Tel Aviv’s best restaurants see the Israeli Food Guide. But the best way to find a good place is to ask an Israeli—they’ll know where it’s good, where it’s cheap, and where the wait staff is the best looking.
Grocery Shopping: A recent addition to Tel Aviv is the emergence of the AM:PM (pronounced Ahm-Pahm if you want to be considered a local). These 24-hour mini-marts are located every few blocks in the city center and carry everything from cheese to fresh fruits and vegetables to cleaning supplies. They aren’t much pricier than regular supermarkets and are very convenient for late night shopping trips or quick errands.