Jerusalem report so far...
We had a wonderful lunch at Between the Arches in the Old City. Quiet, clean, not overly expensive. We had one person with mobility problems and they were great about it, although the restroom was downstairs so that person had to use the public one outside. I think we spent around $125 for 7 people, no beverages, no dessert. That's after tax/tip.
There is also a good cake and coffee place in the Old City. Don't remember the name but the 13 NIS cake and coffee deal was FRESH and cheap. Just as you get into the Old City from the Armenian Quarter parking lot. (Walk down past the shops.)
We have eaten at Gavna twice this week. It's in the middle of the woods someplace near Gush Etzion, but don't ask me how to get there even though I was driving. Food is excellent and they are very relaxed about menu substitutions. We spent 745 NIS for 6 people including desserts one night and 570 for 5 people another night, but both nights we had a teenaged boy who ordered two entrees. They were able to accomodate one of our group who has celiac disease by not putting sauce on one dish and just plain being careful. The 22 NIS for a small loaf of bread is annoying even though the bread is good,
Had an interesting beverage called "Mashke haMelech" in the shuk. Tastes alcoholic but isn't. Chocolate, ginger, cardamom, cinnamon and other stuff I can't remember or couldn't translate.
Try "sachlav" if you get to the shuk. You will either love it or hate it. To me it tastes like warm, soap flavored yogurt, but I cannot stand the taste of rosewater.
Lunch at a sandwich shop called "New Deli." The guys love the place and say they make the best sandwiches. I was unimpressed. Approx 25 NIS per sandwich.
Very good but $$$ meal at the Jerusalem Theater. 300 NIS for 4 entrees and 3 cappuchinos.
The Israel museum has a kosher cafeteria. We bought some very filling sub sandwiches for around 100 NIS for 3 people. The eggplant pesto was a bit too salty. I am not used to being able to eat lunch at a museum so it was fun even without the food being good.
Cake and coffee at Angel in Efrat was mediocre. Chinese at Nava (?) in Efrat was good but only if you are already there and you are hungry.
Oh, and I had dinner at my son's yeshiva and got sick.
Good burgers last night at Burger's Bar in Efrat. They were patient with my slow reading ability (it was Efrat after all) because they have no English menus. The locals have the menu memorized so I guess it's not worth it to translate it...
We all had hamburgers with different sauces and toppings. NIS 180 for 4 double burgers, one single and two sides. They have lamb burgers if you want something different.
They deliver. Not sure if it's all of the Gush or just Efrat,
FYI sachlav is called salep in English. It was a popular drink in England for a short time in the late 18th century. Not everybody makes it with rose water; it isn't an essential part of the recipe. I share your dislike for rose water, so after a few disappointments I learned to ask first whether they use it.
BTW, I wouldn't describe Gavna as "in the middle of the woods;" it's on the yishuv Bat Ayin, just past Alon Shvut. A lovely restaurant, and particularly so at sunset when it's warm enough to eat outside. I wonder if they even have their outside tables set up at this time of year.
Also in that neck of the woods, is the lovely cafe at the Winery adjacent to Alon Shvut. I have relatives who report they weren't treated so nicely there, but we had a wonderful time when we took two daughters of friends out (they were learning at a nearby girls' school).
In case you're interested in any other suggestions, I'm linking to my post of just about a year ago:
My local "consultant" said it's not really at Bat Ayin. I just know that it was the first time in my life I ever saw pouring rain and fog at the same time, and that it would probably be worth it for Gavna to pay to paint reflective lines on the road.
It wasn't even warm enough to eat INSIDE. We had to keep asking them to add logs to the fire.
I would love to tryAlon Shvut but they can't accomodate the celiac,