Food and Drink

Chef Rotem Papo Reveals His Favourite Jewish Restaurants

From cafes to restaurants and bakeries, Papo reveals the best spots

Best Jewish Food Australia
Photo: @danapatisserie

Chef Rotem Papo grew up celebrating Passover in Israel, but his mixture of Moroccan and Bulgarian heritage inspired the lighter, brighter spice-laden flavours of Middle Eastern cuisine at his restaurant GOLDA

“My family heritage is a mixture of Moroccan and Bulgarian and so the dishes at GOLDA certainly speak to that mixture of flavours,” said Papo. 

“To get my fix from home I, therefore, love a few of the Jewish restaurants, cafes and bakeries around Melbourne but also places like Tulum and Moroccan Soup Bar speak to the flavours that feel like home. I also have a couple of places I love to visit on interstate trips.”

Here’s where to go to get your Jewish food fix.

best jewish food australia
Photo: @tulumrestaurant

Tulum

Balaclava
This one-hatted restaurant is helmed by Coskun Uysal, who before landing at Attica, honed his skills in Istanbul and London. Expect to see a modern take on Turkish cuisine, with every plate, served as a delicate piece of art. The menu is set, degustation-style for seven courses, or there is a six-course Sofra to share. Each dish comes from a certain place in Turkey from Kayseri to Hatay. Examples of dishes include Turkish beef dumplings, scallops with saffron yoghurt, stuffed sardines, lentil kofte, and more. The menu is always changing and evolving.

best jewish restaurants australia
Photo: @lefthandedchef

The Left-Handed Chef

South Melbourne
The Left-Handed Chef is a home away from home for most. There’s nothing fancy about it, just good, wholesome food like a big bowl of hummus and schnitzel sanga. Open for lunch and dinner, enjoy meals you would find in the homes of Israel including, shared feasts, Shabbat dinner for the family, and jumbo challah schnitzel sandwiches. 

best jewish food australia
Photo: @miznonmelbourne

Miznon

CBD
While Miznon has locations in Tel Aviv, Vienna, New York, and Paris, you will find this humble restaurant in the laneways of Melbourne, slinging street food-style dishes. Think pitas stuffed with lamb rib stew, steak and egg, and a wagyu burger inspired pita. They offer a selection of veggie pitas such as ratatouille, and falafel filled ones, and seafood pitas filled with tuna, cod, and hapuka. 

best jewish food australia
Photo: @moroccan_soup_bar

Moroccan Soup Bar

Fitzroy North
“I come here for those flavours of home.”
This Melbourne institution has grown to six dining rooms but has kept the iconic patterned tiling, royal blues, and deep tangerines of a Moroccan medina. As for the food, you will find a range of comfort foods and traditional staples including Harrira soup, Lebanese croquettes and dumplings, and chickpea bake. In 2020 they moved from St George’s Road to Fitzroy North.

best jewish food australia
Photo: @5dimebagel

5 & Dime Bagels

CBD
This Kosher bakery is run by New Jersey native, Zev Forman, and single-handedly improved Melbournes bagel game. Today, you can stay for a bagel, or get them to go, along with your favourite smear including hot smoked trout, bacon maple chipotle, cream cheese, and more. The bagels come in several flavours from jalapeno and cheese to pretzel. They also do a classic lox, turkey club, pastrami, and more.

best jewish food australia
Photo: @boosa716

Boosa

Bentleigh East
“This little Israeli cafe is our weekend brunch spot.”
Boosa is a fresh, lively cafe, serving Israeli fare, from hummus and eggs on laffa bread to chicken shawarma in an open pita. You will also find porridge, Challah french toast, and a smokey eggplant in a shakshouka-style sauce served with mini pita on the menu. The counter is filled with treats including salmon bagels, halloumi sandwich, Syrian tabouli, and a sabich wrap.

Best Jewish Food Australia
Photo: @oasis_au

Oasis Bakery

Murrumbeena and Fairfield
“If you’re looking for anything Middle Eastern, this food store has it.”
Although you can visit the shops in Murrumbeen and Fairfield, Oasis is also an online shop, selling drinks, condiments, spices, ingredients, and snacks. Get pita bread delivered to your door, or a grazing box for events, and parties.

Best Jewish Food Australia
Photo: @danapatisserie

Dana Patisserie

Balaclava
A waft of cinnamon and toasted almonds delights every visitor to this family-owned bakery. They bake a variety of bread, tarts, pastries, and biscuits perfect for early breakfast or an afternoon treat. Although the menu changes, expect to see danishes, croissants, doughnuts, cheesecake, banana bread, a variety of Bureka, and bagels. They also sell wholemeal Challah.

Bets Jewish Food Australia
Photo: @gerardsbistro

Gerard’s Bistro

Fortitude Valley
This funky bistro is tucked behind James Street, sporting a colourful palette inside. The menu is designed to be shared, family-style and takes its flavours from the Maghreb and the Middle East. Expect to see woodfired Turkish bread, crab-a-ganoush, coal grilled octopus, lamb brisket, and much more.

Best Jewish Food Australia
Photo: @ezrarestaurant

Ezra

Potts Point
Here is another little restaurant tucked behind a tree-lined street in Potts Point. Ezra embodies Tel Aviv’s cosmopolitan dining scene, offering a fun, light restaurant, surrounded by loud music, and the buzz of diners. The menu is filled with delicious offerings including Jerusalem bread and a range of dippings, Moroccan carrots, roast chicken with grapes and toum, as well as a range of cocktails and international bottles, perfect for pairing with any dish.

Get the latest from Thrillist Australia delivered straight to your inbox, subscribe here.

Food and Drink

Red Rooster Is Serving Free Chicken and Piping Hot Cash This Christmas in July

Get your early dose of festive cheer.

Red Rooster Christmas in July
Instagram / @redrooster_au

The cold weather in most parts of Australia coinciding with EOFY celebrations is the closest thing that we’ll get to snowy Christmas vibes. And if you’re in dire need of some festive cheer after the first six months of 2023, grab your ugly sweater and head to your nearest Red Rooster for Xmas in July deals.

From June 29 – July 31, 2023, Red Rooster is serving up free food items, a chance to win $10,000 or one of 10 merch packs valued at $400 and other fun prizes. All you have to do is sign up as a Red Royalty member and spend $5 on at a location near you or online.

Each week there’ll be new delicious deals and prizes to win. The week one deals have already dropped and they’re looking pretty tasty. You can get access to them via your Red Royalty account. The more you purchase, the more chances you have to win.

Spoiler alert: you can get 10 chicken nuggets for free, right now. Brb running to Red Rooster.

Terms and conditions apply. Visit Red Rooster’s Christmas in July to see all the deals.

Related

Our Best Stories, Delivered Daily
The best decision you'll make all day.