A relaxing disappointment
Posted on 04 / 07 / 2009
It is very sad, how so many vegetarian (and other) restaurants in Israel try so hard to create a great environment to eat in, and then fail to make quality food there. Te'enim is a shining example of this. Firstly it is not handicapped accessible as there are many stairs leading to the restaurant. Once you get in though, (if you are one of the lucky ones to get a table by the window) you probably have the best view that you'll get in any restaurant, of the old city of Jerusalem and the tower of David. The restaurant has a very relaxed and pleasant charm to it with classical music playing in the background. Yet as nice as the atmosphere is, the food in no way lives up to this standard.
We tried the Chickpea/Jerusalem artichoke soup which had good content, but had a poor consistency and flavour, which was unfortunate as the content could have made for an excellent soup, but a clear lack of attention to detail with spices left it bland and watery. Yet the main dishes were even more disappointing.
The worst was the exotic mushroom skewers, which were somewhat of a joke. They were two small wooden skewers with a few shrivelled mushrooms on them. Most human beings would not dare to call this an appetizer much less a main dish. The Spinach Fettuccine was decent, but the ratio of sauce to pasta was absurd. A more honest name would have been "Marinara olive sauce with few pieces of fettuccine playing hide-and-go-seek" While it was tasty, the sheer amount and potency of the sauce was just overwhelming. The grilled tofu was also somewhat of an embarrassment. It is two thick slabs of tofu marinated and baked in a light brown sauce and placed over a bed of rice. It is flavorless and contains every negative stigma that the average meat-eater thinks of tofu. This is inexcusable. Tofu is no longer new in Israel. They have had years to come up with a better tofu recipe to place on their menu and if they cant do that, all Te'enim has to do is go online and look up a better one.
All in all, the food here is somewhat pleasant but nothing better. The portions are abominable to the point where a main dish is not close to a meal and if you don't drain your soup bowl before your main, prepare to go home hungry. So if you're up for a healthy vegetarian meal in a nice serene setting with a majestic vista and don't mind paying 20 dollars for a small portion, then Bon Appetite or as we say in Hebrew "B'tayavon"! For overall Te'enim is a relaxing and pleasant disappointment.
Relaxed pleasant ambiance, HeaLthy cooking, Magnificent view
Not handicap accessible, Small expensive portions, Clueless about tofu