When I first arrived in the Modi'in area there was little in the way of restaurants, certainly not kosher ones. Year by year this is improving, and there is now a decent choice of places to eat out, from nice restaurants to fast food places. As I personally keep kosher, this page will focus on some of the kosher options in and around Modi'in.
This is by no means "the" definitive list, just a sample of the best places I or friends have tried. I cannot take responsibility for the kashrut of the establishements mentioned, to the best of my knowledge at the time of writing they are all kosher. As status can change, it's always a good policy to check the hekhsher.
If you have any kosher eateries to recommend in the Modi'in area please drop me a line.
In the last few years, as the traditional and religious populations have grown in the area several local eateries have decided to close on Shabbat and go kosher. One of these is the Beijing restaurant in Makkabim, a nice little Chinese place with good food and reasonable prices. As a vegetarian I was glad to discover that this is a meat restaurant with good vegetarian options, including several tofu dishes. They also do take away.
Sandwich Bar, a little eatery and take away place in Modi'in Centre, also has a selection of Thai and Chinese food, along with more ordinary meat sandwiches. Here you'll find one the more recent Israeli specialties: stir fried Chinese or Thai dishes in a baguette. Talk about fusion cuisine.
Sangam is a meaty Indian restaurant in Ligad. They also offer Italian and Chinese cuisine, though personally I've only tried the Indian, and very nice it was too. My mother enjoyed their meaty Italian pasta dishes.
I love Indian food, and even though this is a meat restaurant, there are plenty of vegetarian and fish dishes too, so this has been a real boon for me to finally have an Indian restaurant so close to home. Unfortunately it's a little on the expensive side, so it's a treat for special occasions.
My personal favourite is one of the oldest eateries in the region, Luciano's(Mehadrin) in moshav Me'or Modi'in - also known as Mevo Modi'in, Moshav Moodi'in, the Carlebach moshav or simply 'the Moshav'. The moshav was founded by followers of the late Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach z"l, 'the Singing Rabbi', famous for his music and story telling, who started a Jewish musical and spiritual revival during the 1960s. I grew up listening to Carlebach music - my mother took me to my first concert while I was still a babe in arms :-).
What does this have to do with an Italian restaurant? Luciano's is run by Shoshana. The menu is simple, the food is very good, the decor very basic, but what really makes it special is the atmosphere, it feels a bit like you're having dinner in Shoshana's kitchen. There are always interesting people coming and going, and Shoshana is a warm and enthusiastic host and she has many interesting stories to tell about Reb Shlomo, and of course there is the chance to hear the music of both Shlomo Carlebach and his daughter Neshama who is also a singer. In addition to its dairy Italian menu, Lucianos now also offers Swedish style herring, which my local herring aficionado tells me is very tasty.
Carnivores should head to Alberto's at the Ligad Centre in Modi'in's yet to be built industrial zone>./P>
Alberto's is a grill restaurant, of the type that are very popular in Israel, serving a mostly Israeli style menu of humous and Middle Eastern salads alongside a selection of skewered and other grilled meats, including chorizo sausages. If you like meat, you'll enjoy their food. If you're a vegetarian your options will be somewhat limited, though I found the salads and hot mushrooms tasty. There is a fish option too, though it is one of the most expensive on the menu. Overall Alberto’s is quite reasonably priced, The fresh, bright decor adds a nice relaxed atmosphere to the restaurant, making it a nice place to sit a while with friends and linger over dinner
Dos Amigos is a new more upmarket meat restaurant in the new Yishpro shopping centre. A nice place for a special evening out, it offers a menu influenced by Israeli, Georgian and Latin American cuisines, a mixture of the familiar and the decidedly unusual. It doesn’t come cheap, but the food is good and the staff very helpful.
A few years ago a poll of family and friends ties Giant Pizza King (Mehadrin) at the Country Centre with Fabio's Pizza in Maccabim for best Modi'in pizza shop, though Pizza Domino at Modi'in Centre came a close third(not to be confused with Domino's Pizza, which is part of the international chain and is not kosher).
A more recent informal poll found pizza aficionados more divided than ever now that two new kosher pizzerias have arrived on the scene – Pizza Go-Go in Kaiser and Big Apple Pizza (yes, a branch of Jerusalem’s best known pizza place) have arrived on the scene. Both do good pizza, and have become very popular. Big Apple Pizza in particular is
Fabio's and Pizza Domino also offer Yemenite fast food, malawach and ziva, with various fillings and toppings. Both also carry a limited selection of other Italian dishes, and Pizza Domino also has Italian style sandwiches stuffed with a variety of grilled vegetables and cheeses.
In recent years a number of pleasant kosher cafes have sprung up in Modi’in
Koreh BeCafe in Malibu Centre, Emek Dotan, is one of the older establishments. Open until late, this cosy neighbourhood café serves up a variety of tasty dairy options in a relaxing atmosphere with seating either inside or on the terrace overlooking the town. Artwork from local artists line the walls.
Angelos in Modi’in Centre offers an equally tasty menu, though I find the atmosphere a little less relaxing as the premises are more crowded. The modern décor gives it the feeling of a place for a night out. The staff are happy to bring out some crayons for younger customers to draw on the placemats.
Over in the Solomon Centre in the Shimshoni neighbourhood is Ristretto. Its menu offer many unusual dairy dishes, in addition to Israeli café standards such as pasta and green salad you’ll find options like fish and chips, mushrooms and wild rice and goat cheese in vine leaves. Indoor seating tends to be crowded, but there is a large, enclosed outdoor area, though this can be smoky.
Mul Habayit in the Marlaz Centre on Emek Dotan is just that – a small, simple eatery serving fresh homecooked style dairy food. Its French oleh owners have worked hard to create a warm atmosphere and the food has certainly improved since they first opened a few years ago. One of their specialties is a selection of fresh squeezed fruit juices, along with typical café fare like salads, sandwiches pasta and quiches. They also offer gluten free options. Their walls are adorned with work by local artists, each month or two the display changes and another artists is given a chance to display and sell his or her work.
Residents of the Buchman neighbourhood finally have a local café now that Café ‘Anan has opened there. It’s a pleasant eatery and a nice option for residents in an area of Modi’in that otherwise has few services or recreation options.
Saraleh's Bakery at the Country Centre on Emek Hahula Street and Lehem Ha-aretz at the Sherbet Centre, also on Emek Hahula Street, both have small cafes attached. Saraleh's serves sandwiches and borekas, while Lehem Ha-aretz bakery and deli has tables where you can sit out and enjoy their wares. Both sell a variety of tasty breads, cookies and other baked goods. Lehem Ha-aretz also has a good dairy and parve deli section with a large selection of locally made and imported cheeses, smoked fish, olives, fresh pastas, jams, herbs and spices and other items. They usually stock a decent selection of Mehadrin items as well.
The English Cake chain has opened a Mehadrin branch at the Marlaz shopping centre offering an extensive selection of pastries, cakes and cookies, including a several which are sugar free. There is a small cafe area with indoor seating.
There are several more bakeries and cafes in the Shilat industrial zone each offering a slightly different style of sweets and breads. Maafim is one I particularly like, their borekas and savoury oriental style cookies are especially popular. Bonafait in Kfar Rut also offers indoor and outdoor seating, allowing you to enjoy their tempting baked goods on the premises, their croissants are said to be the best in Israel.
Like any self-respecting Israeli town Modi'in of course has a selection of falafel places, and though we haven't tried all of them, our personal favourite is Nahum and Sons falafel and schwarma at the Country Centre. There are also some nice places on the lower level of Modi'in Centre.
IF it's kosher burgers you're looking for, Modi’in now has quite a choice.
The popular Burgers Bar chain has a branch at Malibu Centre on Emek Dotan., and is open until late.
Burger Ranch, a local Israeli chain, has a branch in Re'ut. They also deliver to Modi'in. Burger King in Modi'in Centre has gone kosher, though their branch in Yishpro Centre is not.
If you’re sick of chains serving the same thing, try Burger Inn in the Marlaz shopping centre on Emek Dotan.
Macabis, with branches in Makkabim and Yobus in Ligad Centre were designed for those crazy short Fridays when you suddenly have a million things to do, no time to cook and a few guests turn up unexpectedly...
Macabis, one of the veteran eateries in the area, offers a large selection of homestyle Jewish food from the Middle East, North Africa and Eastern Europe, and some rather less traditional dishes too, such as Chinese noodles. The menu includes meat dishes, fish, cooked and raw salads, cakes and cookies. Amongst our family favourites are their North African style fish and their selection of vegetarian and meaty stuffed vegetables including aubergine (eggplant), courgette, potato, tomato, pepper and cabbage. They also have self-service lunches.
Yobus is smaller, but also offers homecooking like mother used to make, but with a smaller selection and an emphasis on more Ashkenazi type foods. Family and guests have in particular enjoyed their potato kugel and their apple kugel, and they do a tasty cucumber salad as well. There is a small eat-in area in the front of the shop.
Shum, Pilpel and Shemen Za yit in Shilat has a lovely selection of spices, herbs and nuts, as well as imported deli items. They also have a limited take away food section. The staff are very helpful and the store has built up a very good reputation in the area for good service and quality products.
Sangam Indian restaurant also offers sushi.
Not long after we moved to Modi'in a friend of ours announced his engagement. We wanted to host sheva brakhot for him. With both of us working full time it didn't look likely - especially as at that time we didn't even have time to furnish our home properly - we hadn't yet purchased an oven or a table and chairs.
Shoshana Weiss of Epicure Catering came to our rescue. Not only did she provide a delicious, moderately priced, Mehadrin dairy meal, but she arranged for us to hire tables and chairs, set up a professional looking buffet and, when some of our minyan cancelled, rounded up her husband and her shul's rabbi to complete the 10! Now that is what you call service. And all with a smile.
You don't have to wait for a simha though, Shoshana also makes lovely shabbat take away meals and platters to order. She specialises in dairy, vegetarian and low fat meals. Contact her via her website: Shoshana Weiss.
For more information on kosher restaurants and discount coupons for several on this page check out eLuna.
Historical sites in the Modi'in region|
Population and Employment | Services and Amenities | Modi'in's Neighbours | Recreation Areas
Eating Out | Modiin area birds
Copyright 2007 by Leiah Elbaum. Text and photographs on this page are by Leiah Elbaum. Last updated 26 July 2007.
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