In May 2007, a new synagogue opened in Tallinn. It was the first Jewish house of worship to be built in Estonia since World War II. Prior to the war, there had been a thriving Jewish community in Estonia, since the Estonian government has always supported its ethnic minorities. I was really excited when I heard about the new synagogue opening and have wanted to go see it ever since. Then I heard that they were also opening a kosher restaurant in the synagogue, and that immediately landed on my must-visit list. So during the week before Christmas, my mother, J and I finally paid a visit to Moses.
The restaurant is fairly small with elegant table settings and dim lighting. We weren’t given a wine list, so we simply asked for a bottle of the house red. Upon hearing that it cost 600 kroons (about 55 USD, a little more than we were looking to spend for wine at a weeknight dinner), we asked if there was less expensive bottle. Here we ran into a little snag, because our waitress, who understood us well enough when we simply placed our orders in Estonian, didn’t understand when we began asking additional questions and responded only in Russian (which none of us understand). She got some help and we ended up with a 300-kroon bottle of Israeli wine– not only friendlier on the wallet, but also incredibly delicious. Carmel Winery Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot– we recommend it!
For an appetizer we ordered hummus, which came drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with toasted pine nuts. I seem to remember that it was very creamy, with the olive oil adding a richer flavor and the pine nuts adding crunch. I also tried one of the olives that came with it. I don’t really like olives, but I have been trying them more recently, and I think I may actually start to like them. 🙂
I set myself up for chickpea overload by ordering falafel for my main course. The falafel were served with a fresh salad and more hummus! Still, it was all good. The menu informed us that everything is made from organic ingredients and is, of course, kosher. You could really taste that– the food was simple, but tasted clean and fresh and was so satisfying. It didn’t need to have anything added to it.
My mother got this beautiful fish fillet on a bed of chickpeas and caramelized onions. Um, I can’t remember what kind of fish it was. But the colors were just amazing! The chili sauce was more sweet than spicy, but it was still very good.
Unfortunately I don’t have a pictures of J’s chicken schnitzel. It pretty much looked like a chicken schnitzel, but hidden underneath it was a bed of unbelievably delicious potatoes. Seriously, they were SO good. I’m glad he was able to part with a few so my mother and I could try them. 🙂
Overall we were really happy with Moses. The food and wine definitely warrant a return trip. The one downside was not being able to talk to or ask questions of the waitress– that’s a little disconcerting. But she was a very attentive server nonetheless, so our evening as a whole was very enjoyable.