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P. 102

RESTAURANT REVIEW  BY MAXIMILLIEN de LAFAYETTE
 

YAFFA RESTAURANT: BEST MIDDLE/NEAR EASTERN FOOD IN TRIBECA, MANHATTAN.                                               

Photo: Yafa Seror, owner of Yaffa Restaurant in Manhattan, NY.

A funky, friendly and cozy restaurant owned and managed by Yaffa Seror Faro, quite an unusual woman, a.k.a. The Gypsy Queen of Tribeca. If you are fond of authentic Middle/Near Eastern delights and specialties, then head right away toward Yaffa restaurant. And if you enjoy reading Kafka, Proust, Francoise Sagan, Lord Byron, Omar Khayam and Jean-Paul Sartre, dash into that restaurant and ask for Yafa, the proprietor and the existentialist story-teller. The food is superb and Yaffa herself is better. The menu is one of Yafa Faro’s controversial and most colorful delightful madness and creations, for every single dish on the list is named after a motion pictures star, a Hollywood legend and all those dashy-washy characters you can or would squeeze between. Omar Sharif dish is in demand here. If you are French, call it Boeuf Bourguignon. If you are a tourist lost between New York and New Jersey, then, call it Rudy Giuliani beef stew. And if you are not sure where you are or who you are, ask for Queen Yaffa some directions in life. There is a particular dish I liked very much. Shame on me, I forgot what Yaffa called it or named it! It had   the name of a superstar or deity, Queen Yaffa made up the name. But that’s fine, if you are like me who intentionally or unintentionally forgets names, then seize the golden opportunity to inquire about by introducing yourself to the most amicable and gorgeous waitresses working at that delightful spot. Anyway, that wonderful dish  was a combination of Middle/Near Eastern specialties consisting of Baba Ghanouj, Hommos, grape leaves, among other stuff. The smoked salmon is another favorite at Yaffa. And the Truffles French dessert is almost perfect. The food rating is: 4 stars. Service: Almost perfect: 5 stars. Yaffa’s hospitality: We got to change the rating system and scale. Queen Yaffa deserves a couple more stars. The restaurant is not a flashy-dashy spot, nor the rendezvous of the Who’s Who in town. However, the clientele is generally highly educated, bright, cultured, some very classy, while others are intellectually bohemian, and if they are not, don’t worry, Yaffa will “bohemianize” them or “intellectualize” the hell out of them. Yaffa restaurant is so much fun. You will love that place.  Recently, I came across a piece of literature (A Website print out) about the magic, fantasies and wisdom of Yaffa Seror Faro. Judge for yourself. The Gypsy Queen of Tribeca wrote about the only movie house (owned and operated by her father) in the sleepy tiny village, where she saw the light, where she grew up, and where she began to challenge everybody. She also wrote about hundreds of immigrants from Iran, North Africa, India and  more than twenty countries who lived in the neighborhood where she grew up,  about their different spices, smells, dresses, clothes and all the colors of their fabrics, styles and attires. A real human Caravan Serail. And in a warm, candid and heart-felt style, Yaffa described toys she never had and toys she created…About store windows which never existed in her small village, except in her eyes and imagination, so she had to create her own fashion and make her own dresses at the age of eight. Quite a woman is this Yaffa Seror Faro. In Aramaic, ancient Hebrew and Phoenician, her name means “The Lion” or “The Happy Lion”. So watch out! This was Maximillien de Lafayette  and his pen. See you at Yaffa’s.

 

   

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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