Bonafait

This is a first. I went to the restaurant Bonafait with a friend who is reviewing it for an Israeli newspaper. Part of the deal with the review was she had to call ahead to let them know we were coming. I tagged along as the photographer. More than anything, I couldn’t wait to go to see what they would put out as their best. If you knew a food reviewer was coming would you make mediocre food or your best.  (Wait this is Israel won’t bother answering that question)

Bonafait has calls themselves a “French café”. Now looking at their menu I didn’t see anything more French than a croissant, which is never a good sign. But the restaurant was pleasantly full in the middle of the day and is one of the most popular restaurants in the area.

Since it was a winter day, we started with a selection of soups. Can someone please explain to me why so few restaurants take the time to make soup well? The waitress she claimed they make them fresh every day. But all three soups, sweet potato, split pea and onion were drenched in cornstarch and MSG.  Has anyone ever heard of homemade stock?

After the soup they brought out a tasting platter with items from their “Health Menu”. The quiches were excellent, although my partner did not enjoy the eggplant quiche. She said the eggplant overwhelmingly the dish.  Being an eggplant lover, I totally disagreed. The leek latkes were surprisingly good with a spiced yogurt sauce. But I just could not imagine this as a main course; it was more like an appetizer.  The other dishes included wild rice and spice quinoa. Neither were well made, nor enough for a main course. I am not a vegetarian, but I certainly wouldn’t be happy if I went to restaurant and all I was served was a plate of gummy rice.

Next came the pasta, the creamy basil sauce was good but lacked some salt. While the rose sauce broke and lacked an essential balance of cream and acid. Both raviolis dishes were undercooked, which did not add to their flavor.

I am glad I saved room for dessert because the chocolate mousse was fantastic with a great dolce de leche sauce underneath. I wish I could recommend the cheese cake and the apple but they were both tasteless and dry. The apple cake’s topping of crushed nuts should have been toasted and it left a bitter aftertaste in my mouth.

But Bonafait is located in a charming place in Kfar Rut near modiin and is staffed with helpful and attentive waitresses, and the portions are not bad. All around I enjoyed the meal and the experience. Just stay away from the soups and pasta the rest was not bad and even good, although not very French.

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