The Definitive Guide to Living in the Capital , Cairo , Egypt

Best Restaurants in Cairo: A Look Back at 2011

Best Restaurants in Cairo: A Look Back at 2011
written by
Cairo 360

2011 has been a prolific year for dining in
Cairo, with a host of new restaurants opening up all over the city. Sifting
through the best and the worst, Cairo 360 has deemed the following restaurants worthy
of your undivided dining attention.

Adams & Blend

The people behind Adam’s & Blend have
taken it upon themselves to unleash that most Turkish of foods, the doner
kebab, on Cairo. Divided into two sections, Adam’s and then Blend, the Heliopolis
restaurant provides the perfect oxymoronic meal. After scoffing down a delicious
doner dish from Adam’s, you can hop over to Blend for a fresh juice or frozen yoghurt.
The combination of a hearty Turkish dish and the sweet and creative drinks makes
for perfect comfort food.

Ahwak
Salon de Thé

Ignore
the haters that are calling Ahwak pretentious, because this is one of the best
eat-and-chill spots to open up in Zamalek in years.  The understated flamboyance of the interior
had our reviewer feeling like she was in Paris, and everything from the steak
with red grape sauce to the high tea make this elegant little place a haven for
any Cairene looking to escape the toil and trouble of Cairo

Alto’s Bistro

Situated on the Cairo-Alexandria Desert
Road inside Season’s Country Club, Alto’s Bistro may be a little out of the way
for centrally-located Cairenes, but it’s well worth the effort. TV chef Andrew
Mitchell – of Fatafeet fame- is a perfectionist, and it shows everything from
the unbelievable tempura mussels, to the Australian prime cuts of beef used in
their meat dishes. Alto’s Bistro serves up some of the best food we’ve tasted
all year.

Asha’s

Only weeks old, Asha’s in Giza has already
firmly established itself as the go-to place for top quality Indian food. It’s
not often we’re as impressed with a restaurant as we were with Asha’s before we’d
even tasted the food. Great service, a view of the Nile and comfortable
surroundings added to the delicious and eclectic menu. Try the Murgh Makani; we
guarantee that this delicious buttery chicken dish will immediately become your
favourite.

Chop Chop

There’s only really one place we might
choose over Asha’s, and that’s its neighbour Chop Chop. While the dilemma of
choosing one of the two restaurants over the other will have you scratching
your head till it’s bloody and roar, settling for Chop Chop’s far eastern
delights will reap no regrets. With a full blown dim sum counter, fresh sushi
and a wide range of dishes from all over Asia, Chop Chop is perfect for any
occasion.

The Grill
Restaurant and Lounge

The
Semiramis InterContinental in Garden City is home to the Grill; an absolutely
lush restaurant that serves up some of the best French cuisine you’ll find in
the city. Setting the mood is a pianist who entertains all evening, and you’ll
find yourself playing up to the grandeur of the whole dining experience.
Although it’s pretty expensive, one taste of the
duck
liver terrine will turn you into a careless gourmand. That and the French digestives.

Pestle
and Mortar

Mall of
Arabia is growing by the week, and one of its best additions by far has been
restaurant Pestle and Mortar. Its mall setting and modest interior doesn’t do
it justice; it’s only when you peruse through the menu that you realise that
this is a serious restaurant. Serving everything from coconut curry and
prime Angus steak to grilled shrimp konafa, the creativity and innovation of
the menu is something to admire, as is the liquid nitrogen ice cream and the
huge amounts of vegan-friendly dishes.

Pizza Mia

This petite Italian spot in Zamalek has
gathered somewhat of a cult following, and with its delicious pizza and
authentic pasta dishes, it’s no wonder. The mixed bruschette and garlic bread
had our reviewer swooning with delight, and the atmosphere of the restaurant is
so laid back that you’ll want to spend all night in there. Residents of Zamelek
have been truly blessed.

Ruen Thai

Our only
other hotel-based choice is the Dusit Thani Lakeview’s Ruen Thai. Although the
hotel in Fifth Settlement has been under construction in one way or another throughout
the year, this thankfully has had no bearing on Ruen Thai’s serenity, luxury
and delicious food. Spicy Thai dishes, an impressive selection of imported
wines, a candle lit terrace and a gorgeous garden makes this an unbeatable spot
for a classic romantic evening date.

Zeitouna
Lebanese Bistro

Another restaurant
that shouldn’t be judged by the fact that it is in a mall. Firstly, said mall
is Nile City Towers- not shabby at all. Secondly, Zeitouna Lebanese Bistro has
fused the best of classic Lebanese cuisine with some imaginative twists. The
grilled meats are seasoned like nothing else you’ll ever taste, as is the
hummus and the Lebanese lemon-sausage appetisers. We also recommend the
Frankenstein-creations that are the halawa and om ali ice creams. Those
desserts sum up the restaurant pretty well, in that it has brought together
high-end dining and good, simple, hassle-free food perfectly.

Honourable mentions:

The Tahrir Table is the only Swedish
restaurant we know off and Express by Mo in Dandy Mall is cheap, healthy and uses
touch screen computers to allow eaters to order for themselves. Raj at the
Fairmont Heliopolis and Towers does great high-end curries, while Fas’hat Somaya
is a quaint little back-alley restaurant in Downtown Cairo that serves up delicious
Egyptian dishes.

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