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New Cairo, Cairo, Egypt.
Ruby Tuesday: American Diner Chain Opens in New Cairo
From time to time, everybody loves some wholesome American cuisine. Upon hearing that Ruby Tuesday opened its doors to New Cairo residents, we immediately made our way there to enjoy some of its hearty dishes.
Located in the Dancing Fountain arena in Cairo Festival City Mall, Ruby Tuesday offers both outdoor and indoor seating; both of which are roomy. Seeing as how the outdoor seating area did not overlook the fountain, we opted for the indoor seating, with its American diner vibe, to at least enjoy our meal with the AC on. That might have not been the best choice we've made that afternoon as the place was filled with bustling customers and was a bit noisy.
Our waiter was efficient and immediately placed some menus on our table, and we did not hesitate to skim our way through them. The appetisers, named "shareables", are classically all-American with a hint of tex-mex flavours and ranged from spicy chicken wings to mozzarella sticks to quesadillas. The main courses are similarly plentiful; from burgers and pastas to ribs, steaks and seafood.
Our drinks arrived a measly few minutes after we placed our order and our food followed, though taking quite a bit longer than it should have to arrive. Our Parmesan Chicken Pasta (65LE) was a deadly yet delicious combination of fried chicken chunks and penne pasta all drenched in a creamy, Parmesan sauce. The sauce was way too dense, makig the heavy dish difficult to finish. The Chicken Fresco (65LE), however, was quite the opposite; light and easy to wipe off the plate in a jiffy. The juicy grilled chicken breast, topped with chopped tomatoes, came with two sides; we opted for sautéed vegetables and red sauce pasta, both of which were flavoursome, as well as delightfully light.
Thinking that we could definitely use a sweet treat to finish off our meal, we took a quick glance at the desserts offered and immediately knew what we wanted: the Double Chocolate Cake (39LE). Other options available included the Ruby Sundae - delicious-sounding 'New York Cheesecake' - as well as tiramisu, chocolate brownies and the seemingly sinful 'Blondie'. Arriving a few minutes later, we immediately knew we made the right decision; a chocolate fondant-like cake, filled with melted chocolate sauce accompanied by a scoop of Vanilla ice cream and some strawberry sauce.
To sum up, we had quite an unforgettably heavy yet ultimately delicious meal at Ruby Tuesday. Our main courses were quite scrumptious, despite the Parmesan sauce being a little on the dense side, while dessert was probably the best chocolate treat we've had for a while. Next time, however, we'll probably be sticking to the outdoor seating area to avoid the overall clamour and noise.
In the last year or so, the landscape of Cairo restaurants has been shaped by one thing: burgers. With Zamalek housing an array of allegedly gourmet burger joints, Butcher’s Burger has brought the culinary trend to Mohandiseen.
Located off of the quiet Aswan Square, Butcher’s Burger uses its space well; a clear path to the kitchen is flanked by tables that fit small to medium groups. The décor is playful, with one exposed brick wall adding a dramatic touch to the otherwise natural wood and beige interior. Adorning the walls are a random selection of retro memorabilia and pop-art film images including one of the Big Lebowski and another of Daniel Day-Lewis in Gangs of New York, as well as a couple of large plaques carrying burger and meat-related quotes – our favourite was a Carson Daly musing: A good butcher is important to have. It's like a shrink.
The restaurant offers diners an extensive menu of burgers and steaks, with a generous selection of starters also available. Though a complimentary basket of corn chips with salsa and sour cream dips made for a suitable opening to the meal, it wasn’t till the Mega Sampler (44LE) landed at our table that we were really able to get things going. Said sampler includes onion rings, fried mushrooms, fried cheese balls and fried dill pickles – in other words, a heart attack on a plate. To our surprise, however, everything tasted fresh and greasiness was at a minimum, with the fried cheese balls being the standout.
As lovely as that all was, we came for meat. Of the many burger variations, we opted for the Mighty Butcher (69LE); a whopping 350 gram patty topped with lettuce, cheese, caramelised onions, jalapenos, pickles, beef bacon and homemade garlic mayonnaise. Requested to be cooked medium, this mountain of a burger came unevenly cooked, though the flavours were all there. The patty had a satisfyingly handsome set of grill marks to it and the overload of toppings all contributed to the taste. Served with a portion of unremarkable fries and a rather wet serving of coleslaw, this is not a burger for the fainthearted.
The same can be said of the tenderloin steak (106LE). Served with your choice of two sides – choices being baked potato, grilled vegetables, fries or pasta – we made the mistake of going for a baked potato, which was huge. The potato was over-baked and the sour cream that came with it was warm and tasted closer to yoghurt. The grilled vegetables also came in a generous portion, but were much more suited to the steak. Cooked perfectly to the requested medium-well and boasting a perfectly balanced charcoal taste, the accompanying mushroom sauce was thick and fresh, with pieces of fresh mushroom that somehow avoided becoming soggy and limp.
To balance the copious amounts of meat coursing through our veins, we also tried the restaurant’s smoothies (22LE). Both the peach and mixed berry versions were sweet and full of its corresponding fruit flavours, but large pieces of ice made it difficult to enjoy.
Butcher’s Burger is short of being perfect, but it’s mighty close. With fresh, quality ingredients used throughout a simple, unpretentious menu, the few kinks that beset our meal should, and hopefully will, be easily ironed out. Now that’s something to get excited about.