Tel Aviv may be the capital of vegans in the Middle East, but there’s no shortage of juicy, mouthwatering MEAT. My husband and I vacation in Israel because it’s our home and the land of our people, of course, but also because there’s readily available kosher and kosher-style meat on practically every corner.
And I’m not just talking shawarma and schnitzel; that’s for the tourists. I’m talking about big, fat, mouth-watering burgers and farm-to-table cow’s tongue, for those of us who appreciate the real holy land protein.
Yes, I went to Israel to see family and my adorable sister who is a new oleh, but really, we came to eat. And because I share everything in my life, I want to share with you my two favorite places near Shuk HaCarmel to devour some juicy, holy-land meat.
The first is M25: paleo heaven. This place doesn’t mess around either - Google them and one of the first descriptions that comes up is “a no-nonsense haven for committed carnivores." M25 is located in the Kerem, the old Yemenite village right off Shuk HaCarmel. They use only 100% fresh, Israeli grown beef from the butchers conveniently located right around the corner in the meat alley of Shuk HaCarmel.
What did we order? Everything. But sadly, I’m kidding, because that would have been dangerous meat overload. What we did order was:
Beef Tongue, which came with Dutch mustard and homemade horseradish
Tahini, because no Jewish girl can eat meat without it
Shashlik, otherwise known as kebabs but described by M25 as “a lamb of lamb grilled with coals with spicy green pepper and scorched tomato”
A stuffed, deep fried, give-you-an-orgasm, lamb pita which I have been dreaming about since my last bite (it’s really called an Aria, and after we took our first bites we immediately ordered a second)
Minut Steak and Kebab, which, well, you know what they are
The second place is - and do not judge us people - but after we went to M25, we made our way to Bar Ochel, legit in Shuk HaCarmel.
We started with a few drinks and were told they had the best handmade sausages, so naturally, we just couldn’t resist. Basically over the span of that night, we ate an entire farm.
Other than the delicious mojitos and ouzu, the Jerusalem Mix sausage is pretty simply a plate of sausage that has the best flavor in the world. Imagine grilled-to-perfection sausages served with Israeli salad, schug and tahini. It’s the best and it’s cheap.
Whether you’re making aliyah, going on a Birthright trip, or just going to Tel Aviv to hangout, you need to meet this meat. Yalla people, what are you waiting for??
I'd like to give a special thanks to one of my main girls, Fabiana Kocubey, of Fabiana Kocubey photography for documenting our adventures this evening. Lastly, a huge thanks to my best friend and sister, Jen who is a devoted vegan, but hung with us meat eaters anyway.