We were excited to hear about the opening of this kosher restaurant down south in Houston. Aroma Classique Cafe is a European Bakery and coffeeshop, with a lunch and dinner menu consisting of Italian pastas, Israeli appetizers, fish entrees, soups, salads, and pastries.
Aroma Classique is certified by the Mehadrin Kashrus of Texas.
Article below was originally posted in the Daily Cougar, the student newspaper of the University of Houston.
The images that come to mind when you mention the word “kosher” are probably salt and Hebrew National hot dogs. The complexities of what is considered kosher or not can sometimes be lost on people who don’t understand the concept.
Aroma Classique, located at 3953 Richmond Ave., eliminates this problem as they serve a menu that is entirely kosher — and delicious to boot.
The restaurant advertises itself as a “European Bakery,” though it functions more as a Mediterranean café, borrowing from many different cuisines of that area. There is an extensive selection of pastries and cookies, along with coffee and food that is light on the palette. Add that to the outdoor tables and you could enjoy a light lunch on a perfect sunny day.
Lunch is a relatively simple affair at Aroma Classique because the menu isn’t too big. It’s only got a few sandwiches on it, and they all can be ordered with a soup or salad. The smoked salmon is quite good, and in the tuna sandwich you can actually taste the tuna. The most interesting sandwich to try is probably the Halumi, which features a cheese that can actually be grilled or fried. It sure beats fried mozzarella sticks any day. Soups tend to change daily, so it’s wise to ask about them before ordering.
The dinner menu is not any more complicated, ranging from simple pasta dishes to several entrees featuring fish. Again, the café style of food shows here as the flavors aren’t particularly strong and heavy. This may be discouraging to some who are expecting steak or something drenched in cream sauce, but you have to remember that this is a very strict style of cuisine that emphasized “pure” food. It’s light and simple because that’s all it has to be.
This light and simple approach extends to the pastries and cookies. Imported from Israel, the cookies are a nice way to finish off the meal, even if they were frozen. In the pastries though, the flaky dough gets tough when you bite into it. A small price to pay when you ship them from a country half way around the world.
Some pastries may even appeal to those picky vegans out there, as they are “parve,” meaning they were made without meat or dairy products. Happy Hour, though associated with bar specials and cheap eats elsewhere, means cookies are 20% off from 3 to 4 p.m. in the afternoon — another incentive to come eat here for lunch.
Aroma Classique offers very light fare and an extensive choice of baked goodies. It’s a great place to go to grab a bite in the afternoon. Dinner there might not be everyone’s bag, but you may want other plans if you plan to go on a Friday. They’ll be closed after sundown to observe the Shabbat.