One of the most extraordinary culinary adventures you can have in Israel is at the Nalaga’at Center, located in the Jaffa port in Tel Aviv.
Perhaps not the finest cuisine in the Holy Land, the transforming experience is what it’s all about…
Originally opened in 2007, Na Laga’at (which translates to “Please touch”) was founded by the Nalaga’at non-profit organization, which in turn was founded on the ideal that every human being has the right to contribute to the society in which he or she lives. The Center is the first of its kind in the world and its main aim is to promote interaction between deaf-blind, deaf, and blind individuals and people able to hear and see, regardless of cultural or social distinctions.
The Na Laga’at Center has three main experiences to enjoy:
- Nalaga’at Theater: home to the deaf-blind Acting Ensemble, and which has seen over 500 performances of their much talked about play Not by Bread Alone, in addition to their kids show, Prince Rooster.
- Café Kapish: a regular Tel Aviv-style cafe but with deaf waiters who communicate with you in…Sign Language (you’ll pick up a few words along the way!). The cafe is Kosher (and therefore closed on Friday evening/Saturday), and is open from 09:00 to 23:00 every day, except Fridays when it closes at 16:00.
- BlackOut: the pitch-black restaurant (yes, complete darkness – so don’t wear your Sunday best!) with a staff of blind waiters. Here your ability to taste and smell are taken to the extreme – some find it uncomfortable, many find it transforming. By the way, the restaurant is Kosher, there are vegetarian and fish menus, and it’s open Sunday to Thursday, evenings only.
As they put it on their website (www.nalagaat.org.il – see the site for menus and performance schedules): A visit to the Center will change the way you think, the way you feel, the way you are…
You can also find them on Facebook.
Here’s a glimpse at what you can expect at Na Laga’at…