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

El Gomhoria

El Gomhoria: Juicy Grilled Pigeon in Downtown Cairo

reviewed by
Hannah Cooper
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El Gomhoria: Juicy Grilled Pigeon in Downtown Cairo

As a highly
popular Egyptian delicacy, grilled pigeon is one of the dishes that you must
sample in Cairo. Thankfully, the city has a few stellar restaurants that perfect
the art of juicy, well-spiced and chewy pigeons.

El Gomhoria
is located in what used to be an alleyway between two buildings on Falaki
Street in Bab El Louk. Using the tiny space between two other venues, a roof
and a shop front were added, and there stands El Gomhoria.

The oddly
shaped interior is testament to the restaurant’s organic architecture. Long and
narrow tables are located along the right side and if you catch El Gomhoria on
a busy night, it makes for a tight squeeze. A communal sink is located near the
entryway, an omen for the messy task at hand. It’s a no-frills restaurant
that doesn’t miss out on the importance of staying clean.

Salads and
soup arrive in a matter of minutes, including tomato, cucumber and onion in a
light vinegar with pepper undertones. Fresh and chilled, the salad is tasty
with the accompanying baladi bread and tehina. The soup consists of scorching
hot broth doused with lemon and filled with onions and tiny slivers of grilled

As the
restaurant is known for only one thing, it’s no wonder that you have only two
options for your meal: stuffed pigeon or pigeon kabab, if you’re the shameless
type. Tearing into the whole bird is part of the pigeon experience; so we
always opt for the more traditional route.

The pigeon
is rather dainty in size, so ordering two isn’t a bad idea. Including the
salads and soup, a meal for one person will cost around 60LE. Straight off the
grill, the pigeons are served with just enough of a crisp on the skin. Stuffed
full of well-seasoned rice, the meat is tender, making it a savoury
combination. Despite the patience needed to pick those tiny bones clean, we
always find our pigeon meal experience worthwhile.

El Gomhoria
is a great place to take out-of-town guests to or to head to when you have a
craving for some of that traditional delicacy, grilled fresh and
served up in the heart of Downtown Cairo.

360 Tip

Wash down your pigeon with a trip to one of the many baladi bars in the neighbourhood.

Best Bit

A traditional dish served well and reasonably priced is always good.

Worst Bit

The two-option menu might seem limiting for some.

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