Neot Smadar is more than just a restaurant, its a fascinating all vegetarian ecological-friendly community making a go of it in the desert. Just visiting the town's "Gaudi-esque wind tower" is a worthy off the beaten path stop. The "Pundak" restaurant, a little ways down the road, has a cute indoor seating area and a beautiful lush garden where you can eat Al-Fresco.
The community prides itself on growing its own vegetables and almost all of the fresh ingredients of the restaurant are prepared there. I had the Shakshuka (a Mediterranean egg & Tomato sauce based dish) and my friend tried the Eggplant Parmesan. The meal came with delicious home made bread and succulent olives. We both agreed that although the eggplant and Shakshuka were not the best we ever had, they were simple, delicious and very very fresh tasting.
The best part of the meal was actually the drinks. Amongst the many veggie products they produce they make their own nectars in the community and the plum nectar is straight-up divine. The others are quite good too. We finished with some of their health/energy bars which are also good for if you are on the run.
Overall, if you are driving to/from Eilat and you want a nice relaxed vegetarian lunch, then this place is worth the detour (its about 10 minutes off route 90). We were hiking different areas of the desert and for us the fresh and natural flavors really hit the spot.
Note: the place is closed on Shabbat but does not have a Kosher Certificate. It was explained to us that all the food is kosher, but because they serve wines from the community's boutique winery which is run by a gentlemen who isn't sabbath-observant they can not get supervision.Pros: Fresh and Delicious, Great Roadside Stop, Lush/Shaded/Relaxing Garden
Cons: Basic flavors w/o exceptional creativity, Small Menu, Not-Vegan Friendly