The notion of a proper, authentic, untainted pizza has only recently clicked ion the Cairo dining scene. The concept of thin crust and emphasis on the tomato sauce not the cheese was practically unfathomable, considering how far down the localising-line pizza has gone.

Before the new contenders joined the market, though, there was just one well known pizzeria if you wanted a real pizza; Maison Thomas.

While no one disagrees that Maison Thomas' glory days are well behind them, the question remains as to why?

Well, we could start by the fact that they've been unable to keep up with the times; for instance, the restaurant chain still no social media presence or any form of reach to a new generation of customers. This, of course, comes second to the food quality and steep prices.

Whatever the case, we figured we would go see for ourselves at their Maadi branch. Located on the second floor just by Metro Market, the interior boast that same old black and beige colour scheme. The décor seems like it stuck somewhere between an artisan café and a dingy bar.

It only recently came to our attention that Maison Thomas serve more than just pizza. So after browsing the menu, we opted for a Cheese Burger (45LE), a Milanesa (69LE) main course and a Bolognese Pizza (79LE).

Serving time was relatively quick, but the waiters weren't the most friendly or helpful. The Cheese Burger, a 150g ground rump steak patty topped with melted gouda cheese, was decent, but definitely didn't wow us.

The Milanesa, fried veal escalope with a side of french fries, was similarly average. The meat tasted good, but the fried outer layer was soggy and took away from the experience. The fries were, unfortunately, rather oily.

The Bolognese Pizza fared better than everything else. While the pizza was adequately covered in mozzarella cheese, oregano and tomatoes, with a decent layer of minced meat underneath, what really disappointed us was how scarce the tomato sauce was.

The problem with Maison Thomas seems to be small mistakes that take away from what would've otherwise been a great dish. In the case of the main course, the frying process leaves much to be desires, while in the case of the pizza - well, how can you be scarce with the tomato sauce? It's the most important ingredient.