France & Belgium
Rachel Samoul (Aix-en-Provence) and Charles Peguine (Antwerp), both 59, owners of the Tel Aviv branch of Palais des Thés, a specialty tea shop, founded in Paris in 1987
Rachel moved to Israel 30 years ago because she “wanted to be away from my parents and I stayed because I felt at home.” Here, she met her husband, Charles, “the tea master, as we like to call him at home.” Although she misses the “politeness” of her native France, she loves to update her French blog Kef Israel, have her matcha latte at Cafe Xoho and shop at Aviva Zilberman. If she could import something, it would be calissons, the confectionery of her hometown of Aix-en-Provence. It’s a stark contrast to Charles, a marine biologist-turned-tea-entrepreneur, who would bring MUJI to Israel because he is a big fan of Japanese aesthetics (his tea of choice is the Japanese Spring Tea). When he is not hawking tea bags in their stunningly organized shop, he is catching films at the Tel Aviv Cinematheque.
Find A local slice
- Proprietress of all things chic and French, Elise Juilliard stocks her namesake stores and Numero 13 in Neve Tzedek with covetable European labels like Essential Antwerp, Antik Batik, Paul & Joe Sister, Vanessa Bruno, A.P.C.
- Montefiore Boutique Hotel is a mandatory culinary experience for lovers of meticulous food and impeccable style. The tasteful jazz paired with elegant antique silverware makes it the place to fall in love with French cuisine cast under a Vietnamese spell.
- The mom n’ pop Belgian chocolatier Daskalides gives Leonidas and Neuhaus a run for their money. The handmade pralines boast flavors like raspberry ganache and mousse with Tahitian vanilla.
- With its spacious interior and contemporary design, Individual: Cabinet de Parfums is a fitting match for Neve Tzedek in both style and substance, stocking an elite selection of international perfume brands, including Histoires de Parfums.
- Speculoos was cool here waaay before it was, well, everywhere. But the selection of legendary staples at Beatrice Dutch Delicatessen - like poffertjes, Zaanse mayo, Stroopwafels and gouda - make this the ultimate stop.
- Porter and Sons is a beer emporium that houses the most Belgian beers on tap in the country, and then some.
- The closest address to finding truly classic French croissants, chocolate eclairs, and savory quiches is on Dizengoff - at none other than La Bonne Patisserie.
Here’s a TIP:
For an eclectic variety of authentic French events - hosting film screenings, food festivals, and French celebs, keep up to date with Institut Français.
And, that’s not all !
For those British expats who yearn for that perfect golden crunch, flawlessly flakey fish, and hearty chips to match, this fish & chips joint will bring you back to your neighborhood “Cod Father.” Joseph ‘N’ Sons is a greasy bite of England - a finger lickin’ foodgasm - just steps from Rabin Square.
“I was gonna clean my room, until [I found Rolling Stoned].” Israel’s leading head shop is fully stocked with all the vapes, grinders, and necessary paraphernalia to blend in with the hipsters of Florentin. It may be a tad less legal here than in Amsterdam, but we won’t tell anyone if you don’t. And if your ultimate munchies include perfectly fried frites, head to Patat, where the Dutch staples are served in a cone with an Israeli twist on dips for every mood.
Inspired by the 2008 Woody Allen flick, the restaurant Vicky Cristina is only missing Barcelona, but that’s exactly what you get at this sensuous tapas and wine bar. Grab some Paella de Marisco, ceviche, or beef fillet at Vicky, the tapas bar, or a jug of sangria at Cristina, the wine bar – or better yet, go for both and get a true taste of la vida loca.
Every year the Israeli Opera brings a stunning mix of performances to the stage, showcasing a range of classic masterpieces. Don’t miss Verdi’s Don Carlo or Mozart’s legendary Don Giovanni.