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6th of October City, Cairo, Egypt.
Casper & Gambini's: Another Memorable Branch in Mall of Arabia
Whether Casper & Gambini’s goes east or west, whether it opens a new branch or just a home delivery outlet, it never fails to attract us every time we come across it; somewhat like a magnet drawing us in. And this is not due to a lack of places to go to; we were sold from our very first visit to its City Stars branch.
Although Casper & Gambini’s Mall of Arabia branch was visited a while ago, our reviewer was unlucky and the experience wasn’t enjoyable, but since our visits are all about luck, we thought it was time we tried ours again.
Near to Entrance 2 of the mall, the restaurant has two seating areas; one outdoor area where there’s a water fountain, and another indoor section with its entrance on the side of the shops. Both parts are pleasant but if you’re a true appreciator of relaxation, then the outdoor area will more likely appeal to you.
To start we ordered the chicken Caesar salad (45LE). It was served to us in a big, deep bowl that seemed much like a sphere cut in half. The lettuce was fresh; the salad dressing in the perfect amount, where it wasn’t too much or too little; and the chicken was lovely and tender, however there could have been a bit more of it.
We also tried the chicken pesto pasta (56LE), our waiter warned us that the pesto sauce is green and therefore so will be the colour of our pasta, which caused us to hesitate for a moment, but in the end we decided to give it a try and we weren’t disappointed. The pasta was rich and tasty; the sauce was a little on the heavy side, which made us drink a lot of water after it, but the chicken was well cooked. The club sandwich (45LE) we also ordered was a typical club sandwich, but you are given the option whether to have both halves with the same fillings or different. The sandwich is served with French fries that come in a white cup with the restaurant’s logo on it.
After finishing eating we ordered a caramel latte (22LE), cappuccino (19LE) and lemon-mint iced drink (18LE). Overall the drinks were good but the one that stood out by far was the lemon-mint with its bright yellow and green colours swirled within the crushed ice. Although it was quite large, it was so enjoyable that we managed to finish it all.
A large bottle of water at Casper & Gambini’s is for 13LE, a small one for 8LE and a can of Pepsi for 10LE. Unlike our passed review, the service this time was fast and efficient; giving us the right amount of attention.
As of recently Casper & Gambini’s also offers ‘The Chocolate Bar’, that is a very tempting selection of Belgian truffles one can personally choose via The Giftery website.
We always have a number of restaurants at the back of our heads that we know we can always rely on for a tasty, non-fussy meal and Ruby Tuesday happens to be one of them. Not feeling up for any eclectic dishes and wanting a taste of the familiar, we headed over to Ruby Tuesday to see if they’re still at the top of their game.
With dim lighting and dark wood panelling, the place is anything but tacky; the décor is simple and steers clear from any cliché American-diner references. The choice of background music playing, however, begged to differ with the bubble-gum pop hits of the 2005-2010 era playing non-stop during our whole visit.
Our waiter greeted us outside and led us straight to a table in the requested non-smoking section, coming back a couple of minutes later with our menus. The menu offered more or less the same options it always has alongside new, rather interesting additions including: the Hickory Barbecue Chicken (65 LE), Hickory Barbeque Salmon (105LE), New Orleans Jambalaya (80LE) and the Black Fire New York Strip Steak (130LE), amongst others.
We called on the waiter, who instantly came and took our order. Our soft drinks arrived in a matter of seconds and our food arrived about 20 minutes later. Our Double Combo Fajita (75 LE), comprised of grilled chicken and beef strips atop grilled vegetables, came with sides of spicy rice, tortilla bread, sour cream, cheese and salsa dip. The fajita arrived sizzling and both the chicken and the meat strips were cooked to perfection.
The Parmesan Chicken Pasta (65LE) comprised of penne pasta topped with fried chicken strips and Swiss cheese drizzled in creamy parmesan sauce was, as its description suggests, sumptuous but oh-so-heavy. We found the mixture of cheese and creamy sauce to be a bit too hefty for our taste.
The service at the eatery, we must say, was on point, with the waiter coming by towards the end of the meal to check that everything was alright.
In a nutshell, Ruby Tuesday is still going strong, thanks to its alert, efficient waiters and its occasional new additions to the menu. The fajita was everything we had hoped for, but the same cannot be said for the pasta- it is definitely not for the faint of heart.