Meshek Ofaimme for sustainable agriculture has a farm in Arava and a chain of stores and coffee shops where you can buy and taste their sustainable, organic, fair trade, and animal-friendly produce.
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About Meshek Ofaimme
At the Ofaimme farm for Sustainable Agriculture we understand that the taste of our foods does not begin in the Kitchen but in the land in which it grows. This is why we adhere to strict organic standards as well as fair trade practice when we grow our vegetables, fruit and animals in the Negev Desert.
Our handmade produce is crafted slowly using traditional techniques to create food that is tasty and healthy, guaranteed to be free of any type of genetic engineering, preservatives, pesticides and hormones.
All of our products are manufactured and packaged with complete respect for the environment and for the people who take part in the creative process. We sow, harvest, pick, herd and milk with the help of workers and volunteers from Israel and around the world and together enjoy eating our meals from the fruits of our joint labor. We invite you to savor our foods and to take part in the move to flavorful, organic and environmentally conscious agriculture.
Here is a table with all the branches:
|The Pen – The Bar at Hansen||Gdalyahu Alon Street 14, Jerusalem||Sunday – Thursday: 18:30 – 00:30|
Saturday: 20:30 – 00:30
|The farm shop in Maccabim||Renanim Shopping Center, Modi’in-Maccabim-Re’ut||Sunday – Thursday: 08:00 – 16:00|
Friday: 08:00 – 13:00
|The farm shop and cafe in Binyamina||Ha-Meyasdim Street 6, Binyamina Giv’at Ada||Closed for renovation till 14.11||0523-666-850||link|
|The farm shop and cafe in Beit Hakerem||Beit HaKerem Street 19, Jerusalem||Sunday – Thursday: 08:00 – 18:00|
Friday: 08:00 – 14:00
|The farm shop and cafe in Beit Hansen||Gdalyahu Alon Street 14, Jerusalem||Sunday – Thursday: 08:00 – 18:00 (store till 19:00)|
Friday: 08:00 – 14:00
|Visitor Center in the Arava||Idan||Currently closed||0523-666-850|
Note: the table was updated in November 2021. And in any case, before visiting, recheck the opening hours at the official site.
The official website of Meshek Ofaimme does not mention Kashrut. But according to an interview with the owner, they are Kosher Tzohar.
You can order hosting tray, cheese, yogurt, eggs, olives, bread, honey, and other produce at the official site.
Orders above 450 NIS are eligible for free shipping, and orders below that amount will pay a percentage of the purchase.
The Farm Shop and Cafe in Beit Hansen
And now, we will visit the farm shop and cafe in Beit Hansen. It is located at Gdalyahu Alon Street 14, Jerusalem.
Map of the area:
You can find paid parking (blue and white curbs) on nearby streets. We parked at David Marcus Street and walked for several minutes to the entrance.
Then we used the entrance at Professor Ya’akov Sheskin Street 17.
The entrance at Professor Ya’akov Sheskin Street leads to the store. At the store, you can purchase a wide variety of goods. Here are several photos from the store.
As you can see, you can find purchase cheese, vegetables, olives, honey, coffee, bread, and other goods.
Near the store, you can find the restaurant. And as you can see from the following photo, it is open under the green Coronavirus pass.
There are tables both indoors and outdoors.
There are restrooms inside the restaurant.
If you are visiting with kids or somebody else who does not have the green pass, you can use the takeaway option. We ordered takeaway and ate at the garden by the Hansen House. But first, some information about this place:
Designed by German architect Conrad Schick, Hansen House was first established in 1887 as a leper asylum by the Protestant community of Jerusalem.
In 1950 the site was purchased by the Jewish National Fund (JNF), and served as a leprosy treatment center through 2000. In 2009, the Israeli government decided to hand over the building to the municipality of Jerusalem city, for the purpose of converting it into an interdisciplinary cultural center. In 2011, the Jerusalem Development Authority (JDA) started the Hansen House preservation project. By the end of 2013, the impressive historical building was reopened to the public, as a design, media, and technology center.
The Hansen House Center for Design, Media, and Technology now offers permanent and changing exhibitions, one of which is a historical exhibition depicting the story of the Hansen House and its prior tenants. The Hansen House includes a movie theatre, fabrication laboratory (Hansen Fablab), and a beautiful garden surrounding the building that was conserved and maintained with the rest of the compound. Advanced academic programs are offered by the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design and Residency programs are offered by Mamuta Art & Media Center. Related design and technology research groups and art groups also operate at the Hansen House, including the Film & Television Fund of the Jerusalem Development Authority, the Erev Rav culture and society journal, and more. In 2017 the Offaimm Cafe for sustainable organic agriculture was opened.
As you can see, there are wheelchair ramps. Thus this complex is accessible.
We ordered three Croissants in the form of Bourekas. You can see them at the bottom of the menu in the next photo.
There are about a dozen tables in the garden in front of Hansen House, and we found a quiet place.
And here is a photo of our order. I included forks so that you could see portion size.
The food was very fresh and tasty. But the portion size is not that big.
Near Hansen House, you can find Ester Tower. Unfortunately, it was closed, and we could not get on the top observation platform. And here is background information about Ester Tower:
Jerusalem is, and not only for me, an enchanting city. All of us in HAMR feel the same way about it In the spring of 2017 my friend Luker Pribyl, who is the head of the Czech Centre in Tel Aviv, approached me with news that he and Mrs. Francoise Cafri from the Jerusalem Municipality possibly found a way to build an artistic object, a tower, in the center of Jerusalem. And that it would be a great way of celebrating the 100th anniversary of the founding of Czechoslovakia, as well as the 70th anniversary of the establishment of the State of Israel. Of course, I did not hesitate, not even for a second.
The most exciting piece of information was that the tower could be erected in the very heart of the new part of the city, in the extensive gardens of the Hansen House. Back in the 19th century, this historical building served as a hospital for patients with leprosy. Nowadays, it houses a prominent art center. The tower would rise there as a magnificent artistic “artifact”, while at the same time offering visitors a spectacular view of the surroundings.
Right away we set to work and an idea occurred to us — that it should resemble a cactus. Why? Well, when a cactus blooms with a beautiful garland of flowers, in its resilient and prickly nature it is a movingly beautiful plant. And I found it symbolic. This combination of tenderness and determination was, as I noticed, similar to the character of people I had encountered in Israel. And furthermore — what do we call Israelis born in this spectacular yet somewhat hostile land, who manage to turn deserts into blossoming gardens? Sabra. And what is sabra? A cactus of course! So, we found ourselves constructing a sabra in order to celebrate people who possess strength, courage, and toughness, yet also have much love for and devotion to their country.
Source: sign on site.
If you love cheeses, check out the following places (sorted from south to north):
- Kornmehl Farm – Goat Cheese Farm and Restaurant
- Ivry Dairy – Store and Restaurant in central Israel
- Hanan the Cheesemaker – Store and Tours in the Sharon plain
- Meshek Ofaimme, Hansen House – Visitors Guide
- Jacobs Dairy Farm and Agadat Lechem -Store, Restaurant, and More
- Schwartzman Dairy, Store, and Restaurant in Bat Shlomo
- Safed Cheese and the Original Dairies – Hameiri and Kadosh
Meshek Ofaimme at Hansen House is a lovely place. The food was delicious, and we enjoyed it greatly (the only downside was portion size). And I guess we are not the only ones since Meshek Ofaimme at Hansen House has a rating of 4.4 (based on more than 1,000 reviews) on Google.
Have you visited Meshek Ofaimme? Tell us in the comment below about your experience.
That’s all for today, and I’ll see you in future travels!
Additional ResourcesHere are several resources that I created to help travelers:
- Israel Trip Planner is the page that will help you to create your perfect travel route.
- National Parks And Nature Reserves page lists and put all national parks on the map. There is also a top list, information about ticket types and campsites.
- If you are looking for things to do, here are the pages for Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, Haifa, Sea Of Galilee, and Makhtesh Ramon.
- Wondering what events are there in Israel? Here is the Events And Festivals By Season guide.