Café Tabasco: Classic Meets Modern at Dokki Eatery
Sister of popular Cairo restaurant, Abu El Sid, Café Tabasco resembles its restaurant counterpart in many ways. Fulfilling a traveller’s dream of an Aladdin’s cave experience, this is high up the list of places tourists might like to stop off at. The funky disco music coming out the speakers broke any cliché one might have about a typical tourist spot, though, and the place ultimately achieved a hip, buzzy vibe.
The menu starts out with Oriental appetisers, such as Oriental sausages (32LE), but this theme doesn’t carry out through the rest of the menu. Rather, it widens its exploration of the east and heads to Japan and Thailand, adding teriyaki beef, and ice Thai coffee to the mix. Disappointingly, the Oriental theme went completely out the window on the desserts section, which is a shame, as we are big fans of Abu El Sid’s sweet options.
Turning up for the late slot, we first got in a few coffees; the café miel (17LE) – a mix of coffee with honey and cinnamon – encapsulated the café perfectly: traditionally Middle Eastern, with a kick.
More kick came in the form of the Thai chicken curry we ordered; authentically Thai with a thick creamy sauce, it had us reaching for our mango smoothie (15LE) to cool the flames. Fresh beans gave the dish a good crunch, but they numbered only four in total. It was served with a mountain of chips as a side, although rice, mash and vegetables were also available.
The Tabasco cheese burger (28LE) turned up in a soft white roll, packed with a tender beef patty, salad and a cheese slice, with more chips on the side. The beef was succulent, but the warmed up soft bread masqueraded as a hearty baguette didn’t fool us and it let the dish down.
To counter the explosion of flavours, we ordered the ‘Relaxation’ (18LE); a yoghurt-based drink made with honey and fresh fruits from the ‘Power Potions’ section of the menu. The drink served us well as a fresh and cooling cocktail.
The shisha also failed to impress; the flavour didn’t go the distance and the coal was out before our meals arrived. Hardcore tourists who come for the Alladin’s cave look might enjoy the smoke filled air and relish the stinging eyes, but if you want a chilled night out with friends that could cut the evening short.
Mood lighting emanating from dusty arabesque lamps and retro art of Egyptian ad campaigns adorned the walls, and provided a nice escape to a Khan El Khalili setting without the chaos. Go to Tobasco for an easy introduction to Egyptian style nightlife and café culture, but don’t be surprised to find the real inner-city nightlife is actually a different thing altogether.