Tofaha Ramadan Tent: Fruity Sohour on the Nile in Zamalek
drive through Zamalek without seeing at least a dozen signs pointing you to the
Coffee Shop Company on Abu El Feda Street. But what’s also hiding behind
this address is sure to be one of the hottest Ramadan tents this season.
Scattered on tiered platforms right next to the Nile and sporting all kinds of
fruity décor, Tofaha might not have the widest selection of dishes, but its incredibly
relaxing atmosphere and excellent shisha leave you concerned with little else
in the world. .
there’s always the chance that you’ll show up and be seated immediately, we
have a feeling it would be best if you make a reservation here. If you are
forced to wait, there is an assortment of tables and chairs just outside the
apple-shaped entrance where you can relax and watch TV until your table is
ready. No matter where you sit inside, you’ll have a good view of the TVs that
are liberally scattered around the place, screening Ramadan serials and
plush white couches and heavily cushioned wicker chairs only add to the cool,
lazy ambience of the place. The flowing waterfalls near the centre walkway are constructed
to compensate for those who weren’t lucky enough to be seated right by the
Nile. You’ll naturally be craving a shisha at this point and in the spirit of
Ramadan, this reviewer highly recommends the karkadeh (23LE): it’s very strong,
very delicious and served on ice to ensure the smoothest and coolest smoke
There is no
set menu offered for sohour and the à-la-carte items are nothing extraordinary.
All the Ramadan drinks seemed to have been consumed by the time we got there,
but the fresh juices (16LE) were a fine alternative. The baba ghanough (10LE)
was especially good – this reviewer always appreciates a smoky, chunky version
– but could have used some bread of a much higher quality than the tough baladi
kind that was served. The mixed cheese platter (21LE) was also a pleasant
surprise even though it didn’t contain any particularly exotic samples – roumi and
cheddar were a couple of the options.
usually hard to complain about foul, but
for those that prefer this Egyptian staple a little chunkier, Tofaha’s fine
bean purée will come as a rather unpleasant surprise. At 13LE a dish, they
could have left the tomatoes and onions out of the blender. Other than the mint
and cucumber yogurt (10LE), which came out a little watery and tasteless, the
rest of the mezza dishes were average, but good.
What Tofaha might lack in exquisite dining it
more than makes up for in its relaxed but fun atmosphere and Nile-side location.
If you’re not feeling the traditional sohour dishes, you can always just order
from the Coffee Shop Company’s regular menu which includes burgers and iced