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


Gandofli: Reasonably-Priced Seafood Specialist in Nasr City

reviewed by
Waleed Abuarab
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Gandofli: Reasonably-Priced Seafood Specialist in Nasr City
In one of the most elegant parts of Nasr City – the centre of Abu Dawood El Zahery Street  –
lies Gandofli; a chain of seafood restaurants whose branch in Maadi
received a very reputable Cairo 360 three-and-half star rating back in

The restaurant in Nasr City is much
smaller in comparison to the Maadi brancg. Although the space is  made
up of two floors, where the lower one is more spacious, the upper floor  – more conducive to an intimate group dinner  –
was out of bounds at the time of our visit, as they didn’t have enough
staff to cover both floors. So taking a seat downstairs by a window, we
noticed the décor was still heavily drowned in Christmas and New Year
decorations, though beneath them we could detect earthy colours and TVs
playing foreign films. Thankfully, the tables were not covered with linoleum – a nice change from Cairo’s other seafood restaurants.

From the appetisers, we settled on the seafood
soup (29LE)  – a
perfect test for any seafood eatery. Although prepared with a generous
amount of shrimp and crab, the broth itself was little on the bland

An order of mixed grills (54LE) comes with filet of fish , small shrimp,
calamari, fresh clams and fish cakes made with rice and shrimps. The
filet stood out most among what was an uninspiring cocktail of starters.
The salads at Gandofli are especially recommended; from the basic
tehina and tomato salads  (6LE), to the herring and peppers salad (7LE).

T the time of our visit, a fridge displayed a limited choice of
fish and shrimps, where only the sole (125LE/kilo) tempted us with its
dark skin and pure white meat. We requested that the sole be pan-fried and, once again, the kitchen
didn’t leave us disappointing. The flaky, soft meat was full of taste
and the crispy skin added a perfect textural balance.

We also tried the oven-baked shrimp
(160LE/kilo) which is prepared with
tomatoes and green pepper sauce; by far the best dish, the shrimp was
cooked perfectly and soaked up the juices from the tomatoes to maintain a
perfect texture and moistness. Even if you finish the shrimp, you can
lather up the sauce in bread or add it to some extra rice  – it’s that good.

For two people, we ended up paying about 200LE, which
isn’t bad compared to the bloated prices of seafood in Cairo.
However, we found the service to be slow and carried out with a sense of
boredom – am attitude that left us feeling a little uncomfortable. But if you can overlook this hiccup, Gandofli is a safe bet for any seafood cravings.

360 Tip

Gandofli has branches in Maadi, New Cairo, and Mohandiseen.

Best Bit

Wonderful oven-baked shrimp

Worst Bit

Poor service.

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