The new Mamilla Alrov Quarter has aroused debate among Jerusalemites: Is it better to keep building upscale establishments catering to the tourists (and obstructing views), or should the city work to placate its residents and attract new ones? Or is there a way to do both simultaneously?
Situated across from the upscale David Citadel hotel and the ritzy David's Village neighborhood, but abutting the walls of the Old City, the Mamilla mall seems to be in a position to capture a wide clientele.
While not every window shopper can afford to buy something at the Ralph Lauren shop, pretty much everyone can eat at Roladin, one of the handful of cafes lining the row of storefronts. It's always bustling, with a surprisingly large percentage of Israeli patrons ? considering its location. But you'll also hear English, Italian and Russian if you can manage to isolate the sounds that make up the low roar that is the soundtrack of Roladin. When it's nice out, you can sit on the large patio and take in a panoramic view of apartments, hotels and the approach to Jaffa Gate.
Roladin offers a pretty standard café menu: egg breakfasts, sandwiches, salads, a small pasta selection and coffee. But its real attraction is dessert. Part of a nationwide chain, Roladin originally started as a bakery and later expanded to include "real food." Still, its baked goods remain the star, and many are prepackaged for your takeout pleasure.
Also noteworthy at Roladin is its attention to holidays; on Hanukkah it offers the best selection of donuts in Jerusalem ? there are fights to get the last ones ? and for Purim there are hamentaschen. Come by around Rosh Hashanah for a honey-based confection or on Tu Bishvat for something with dried fruit and nuts.
What you should really know
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