The Carmel Market and its neighbour, the Nachalat Benyamin Pedestrian walkway, are a perennial draw for both tourists and locals rushing through their shopping lists. When hunger springs its head, visitors usually sate their appetite with one of the grilled meat or bakery stalls deep within the chaotic market.
But, considering the range of available fresh ingredients, opting for a mere stuffed pita is an epicurean sin.
Fortunately, chef Amir Kronenberg's new restaurant, Gedera 26, lies just past the first rows of stalls, waiting to save you from any culinary wrongdoing. Born to parents of Swedish and Iraqi origin, chef Kronenberg designed a menu that relies heavily on the gastronomic dichotomy of his background, while utilising market freshness as a foundation for the day's fare. Expect to see Swedish Meatballs and Kibbe Soup surviving as the flagship dishes in an otherwise highly volatile menu.
The overall culinary attitude is that of fine dining within a home-like setting. A small dining hall limits guests to thirty - the proximity of which creates something of a family feast. Both staff and guests embrace the informal atmosphere, as exemplified by the fact that the chef himself would leave the open-air kitchen, which spills onto the bar, in order to greet new guests and serve the Crispy Shrimp he just prepared.
Gedera 26 is an ideal solution for a respite from the frenzied ways of the market and the artisanal fair nearby, or as a sweet finale to a tour of the unique Kerem Hateimanim quarter. Find a seat outside on a Friday afternoon for a perfect view as the hectic Carmel Market shifts to tranquil silence for Shabbat eve.