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Maadi, Cairo, Egypt.
Mado's Big Bite: Sandwiches Bark Louder Than They Bite in Maadi
This delivery-only Maadi eatery boasts ’the most exquisite international cuisine’ consisting of huge sandwiches and salads. Unfortunately, our first experience with the ’biggest bite in town’ proved to be a trying one. Mado’s should worry less about quantity and more about quality.
It was a challenge just to place an order in the first place. The menu on Mado’s Facebook page is hard to read while the one on the official website is not only incomplete but also contains food descriptions that are constantly changing much to the annoyance of any visitor. After one call to reconfirm the address, the food was delivered in an acceptable forty minutes.
We ordered the regular Tzatziki chicken sandwich (24.99LE) and the Chik ‘N Chips (24.99LE) and were not pleased with the result. The Tzatziki chicken thighs were undistinguishable from the accompanying mushrooms and the bacon and strained yogurt did little to help the overall appeal of the dish. The mushroom-chicken combination was stuffed into a large ciabatta roll that would have overpowered the taste of just about any of its contents. On the other hand, the Chik ‘N Chips offered a meagre portion of marinated and spiced chicken sitting atop a mound of French fries. The sweet chilli sauce on the side served as an acceptable dipping sauce for the fries; however, any sauce cup will run you an extra 3LE.
These two orders were all the more disappointing because the menu offered little more in the way of appetising dishes. All sandwiches are sized regular, Big Bite and Mega Bite and include the Sweet Chili Prawn (40.99LE/54.99LE/70.99LE), BBQ chicken (24.99LE/36.99LE/45.99LE), and the Big Beefer (35.99LE/54.99LE/64.99LE). Other options include French fries (9.99LE), tomato basil salad (15.99LE), tuna salad (22.99LE) topped with crab meat, and three different types of garlic bread ranging from 15.99LE-56.99LE depending on your desired amount of cheese and bacon.
When the food arrived, the price on the receipt was conveniently more expensive than the price quoted over the phone. Though the difference was only a few pounds, the price discrepancy resulted in an awkward shuffle for more change as the delivery man stood at the door. Having been disappointed by the food and unimpressed with the promised mega portions, this reviewer will not be ordering from Mado’s until they iron out their kinks.
With Mcdonald’s and Pizza Hut pretty much monopolising Dokki’s Messaha Square – just look at the always empty Papa John’s – it’s always a surprise when something new opens there. However, that didn’t stop Wienerwald from opening a new branch next to the ill-fated Papa John’s.
With the apple-green ceiling, wood floor, random cartoonish chicken silhouettes, the interior of Wienerwald pretty much follows the same colour scheme of the international branches. There are very limited number of tables and chairs, though.
Wienerwald’s menu is all about different variations of chicken, salads, sides and a lonely hot dog item. After checking the menu, we opted for Half Rotisserie Chicken Meal (50LE), Schnitzel (47LE) and Backhendl (36LE).
Served with perfectly cooked French fries, the rotisserie chicken had a beautiful golden brown crispy skin, exquisite seasoning with a unique smoky flavour to it and was all-round tender – plus, it didn’t have the bad poultry odour you usually find with roasted chicken. Despite a second side of bland rice, it was a flavourful and affordable meal served in a generous portion.
Moving to the Schnitzel, the German classic dish was served with a mini bowl of unremarkable coleslaw and a cold mashed potato that was otherwise very creamy and tasty. As for the schnitzel itself, it was breaded perfectly and had a perfect crust and the chicken very tender, but it wasn’t as thin as schnitzel should be, though a simple squeeze of lemon on top added a great zesty flavour.
Meanwhile, the Backhendl was rather disappointing. Coming with French fries, coleslaw,and 3 pieces of fried breaded chicken – a traditional Austrian dish – was, unlike the previous dishes, very dry, lacked seasoning which and tasted bland, while the crust was super oily.
We finished our meal with a German Apfelstrudel (19LE). The pastry is stuffed with an apple-cinnamon mixture, topped with powdered sugar and a drizzle of chocolate sauce. Though it sounds great on paper, it turned out to be another disappointment. Even though the pastry had perfect layers it was very tough and while the apple had a spot-on tender consistency, the cinnamon flavour was far too strong – we felt like we were being tricked into taking the cinnamon challenge.
All in all, our visit at Wienerwald had its ups and downs. For a fast food chain, their food is clean and feels homemade. At the time of our visit, though, we experience the classic fast food problem: inconsistency. Some items were great and others had their flaws – a few too many.