Tel Aviv: Herbert Samuel
Every May, Conde Nast Traveler releases its Hot List, a collection of the best new hotels, spas, restaurants, and nightspots. Check the Daily Traveler every day for a new post from this year's list.
With a prime beachfront location, modern interiors, and a celeb chef, Herbert Samuel is Israel's most successfully realized restaurant in decades. It marks the return of Yonatan Roshfeld, who almost single-handedly launched the country's haute cuisine movement nearly 20 years ago. The main room of the split-level space is anchored by an angular bar, and there are slim wooden shutters dividing the various dining nooks. Italian meats--from prosciutto aged for 24 months to garlicky lunga spessa sausage--warrant their own category on the menu, followed by hearty dishes like slow-braised lamb served in a hollowed onion or thinly sliced pork loin in a smoky bacon and lentil stew. Poppy seed ice cream is layered with pastry cream and almond crunch for a fun take on mille-feuille (entrées, $5-$22).
Address: Beit Gibor, 6 Koifman Street
* Hot List 2008
* The Israel guide
* The Middle East: Traveling Outside the Comfort Zone