Desoky and Soda: Popular Maadi Cafe Opens New Branch in Dokki
34 Doctor Michell Bakhoum St. (from Mousadak St.)
09:00 - 00:00
From birthday gatherings at Tabasco and pretending to be a sushi expert at Makani, to unhealthy midnight snacking at Abu Ramez and the smell of Cinnabon; Dokki’s Moussadak Street and its surroundings were the food court for many back in the day.
Recently, the area seems to be regaining its dining reputation, with new names like Waltz, Dunkin Donuts and Abu El Sid opening, with the latest addition being Desoky and Soda.
As a venue, Desoky and Soda is one of those loud and crowded cafes, but it somehow makes you never want to leave. There’s an indoor area with generic seating and a juice bar that adds more noise, and a small roofless area that makes you wonder if the neighbours will start complaining. It’s just a perfect modern Egyptian ambiance that we all enjoy every once in a while. When it comes to food, the slogan on the menu says “akl share3, shorb afrangi” and it’s pretty accurate – we were drinking a smothie while eating feteer.
We started our meal with the Woo-Woo cocktail (33LE) and Kiwi Smoothie (32LE). The cocktail is a mixture of cranberry juice, peach syrup and ‘sour mix’, but was overly sweet and had unbalanced flavours that didn’t make much sense. On the other hand, the kiwi smoothie was one of the best we’ve had in a very long time. It had a spot-on amount of sugar and a bold kiwi flavour.
Moving to the ‘Baladi’ side of things, we opted for Hawawshi (32LE), Macaroni Melt Cheese Sausage (56LE), and Chicken Shawerma Feteer (70LE). The Hawawshi came in the form of two halves of baladi bread with tahini dip and pickles as sides. The beef was well seasoned and had great seasoning and flavours, the bread was far from greasy and the portion was satisfying.
As for the pasta, it was a HUGE pot filled with perfectly cooked penne pasta and sausage, both swimming in a pool of bechemal sauce, and then all topped with layer of melted mozzarella. Pasta dishes were on almost every single table at the time of our visit, suggesting that its a favourite. But despite it being big enough to feed two people, it did have its downfalls; the sausage was rather grainy in texture, while the bechamel sauce had too strong of a cheesy flavour that didn’t quite work.
Meanwhile, the waiter tempted us by upgrading our shawerma feteer to a “Wesh Pizza” for an additional 15LE which basically means topping the feteer with veggies and cheese. The feteer was also served like a pizza in triangular slices; the layered pastry had a flaky top dough and was flawless, and you can’t go wrong with more cheese on top. However, the shawarma filling of small cubes of chicken was bland, tasteless and needed seasoning.
We finished the meal with Feteer Kinder (65LE) for dessert. Just like the savory feteer, the dough was flawless, but here the filling was just as good. It’s called a Kinder Feteer not because it has seven mini bites of kinder on top, but because the dough is filled with milky cream and topped with melted chocolate as an imitation of the famous candy bar. Surprisingly, the sweetness was just right and although it’s certainly a heavy dish, it’s worth every single calorie.
Desoky and Soda is the café you would go to with your friends if you want to play cards while having shisha, smoothies and some snacks to share – and we absolutely loved the positive energy from the staff and how they’re trying to build a relationship with their customers. The food, on the other hand, has its ups and downs; the portion is huge and the menu is fun, but some dishes suffered from bland flavours. Overall, for what it is, it’s very good and it suits the Egyptian market perfectly.