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

Five Bells

Five Bells Restaurant and Bar: Afternoon Lunch on the Terrace

reviewed by
Hannah Cooper
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Five Bells Restaurant and Bar: Afternoon Lunch on the Terrace

Located on the corner of Ismail Mohamed and Adel Abu
Bakr Streets in Zamalek is the Five Bells Restaurant and Bar. It’s been around
for decades, but seeing as how we’ve heard little about it, we had to give it a
shot. The best part? The restaurant has a sprawling terrace lined with tall
trees, shielding you away from the street and with plenty of space for privacy.

Despite the funky decor, where cherub statues meet
pharaohs, there are indeed five bells circling the stagnant fountain. This might be the kind of place that you would take grandma and
grandpa for lunch.  

If you’re looking to dine inside, there is a
jazz-decorated pub with a full service bar. A Stella will run you 21LE, while 28LE
will get you a glass of ouzo. Bottles of wine, including Khayyam and Cape Bay,
run between 115LE to 140LE.

Their international menu hosts a slew of cold and hot
appetisers ranging from your standard sambousak to shrimp cocktail, as well as
more interesting options such as forelimbs and lamb testicles… mmm! For 17LE,
the baba ghanough wasn’t anything out of the ordinary; but paired with the
crisp flat bread, it was quite tasty.  

Various meat and chicken platters are available, as
well as pastas and soups (20LE to 25LE). The risotto a la pescatore (30LE) is served
in a huge portion and surprisingly cooked to perfection. Well-covered
in a tomato and garlic sauce, they definitely don’t skimp on the grilled
calamari and shrimp. If you’re a fish lover, this plate is for you.  

For 60LE, our beef fillet came with a creamy mushroom
sauce and freshly steamed vegetables to finish it off. Tender and juicy, the
fillet was filling and the vegetables were refreshing.  

Dessert options range from mousse au chocolat (not
available at our time of visit) to crème caramel, though we opted for a
favourite past-time; the banana split (17LE). Served in a cute little dessert
glass, we were disappointed by the measly amount of chocolate and banana
toppings. And where were the nuts and cherries?  

Nonetheless, two sodas, an appetiser, two main courses and a
dessert cost around 200LE and left us very well satisfied.  

360 Tip

The late afternoon is a great time to visit the restaurant.

Best Bit

The terrace provides a great way to relax and enjoy the moment.

Worst Bit

Some of the prices on the menu, including the appetiser, seem a bit steep. 

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