OCD — Tel Aviv, Israel
The most exciting dining destination in the Middle East (and, arguably, in the Mediterranean) is Tel Aviv, where young chefs explore a wide spectrum of culinary traditions and add a unique slant. Nowhere is this more evident than at OCD, helmed by a rising star in Israel’s culinary world.
The restaurant’s name comes from the young chef, Raz Rahav, and his obsession with complex, precise cooking, and elaborate plating. OCD offers two sittings per night and reservations are required in advance. There is no menu from which to choose. Instead, guests inform the restaurant of any dietary restrictions at the time of booking, and Rahav creates a nine-course culinary adventure, which changes monthly, using local ingredients sourced from farms and handpicked vendors.
Local architecture firm, AKD Studio, took on the challenge to transform a former steel engraving plant in Noga Complex, a rising design area on the edge of Jaffa, into a inviting space of raw concrete, glass, wood, white walls, and brick. The choice of materials and the ceiling’s exposed oak beams lend the space a barnlike vibe—albeit a very restrained and modern barn.
At the centre of the room is an open-concept kitchen flanked by an Ivanka concrete bar and 18 Penthaus chairs upholstered in chartreuse hued velvet. Bespoke light pendants that hang over the bar keep the mood subdued and warm. A solitary piece of art, which changes often, hangs on an exposed brick wall.
Throughout the meal, diners are invited to get out of their seats and walk right into the action – just like they might at a friend’s dinner party – to ask questions, take a closer look at how the chef plates each dish, and even take pictures.