Sydney-based speciality gourmet food retailer and restaurant Jones the Grocer has branches all over the Middle East, from Dubai and Abu Dhabi to Doha and Cairo. The Australian deli-restaurant has flagship stores located in Galleria40, Sheikh Zayed and O1 Mall, New Cairo. However, Jones the Grocer is more than just your ordinary deli-restaurant hybrid; their concept includes a patisserie, artisan cheese fridge, a halal charcuterie, a speciality coffee corner, and an extensive up-scale breakfast, lunch, and dinner menu.
We headed straight to their branch in Galleria40 to check out their venue. Located on the mall’s second floor, the venue boasts a spacious open-air terrace, indoor dining area, and corner-side cheese fridge. We opted to stay inside after browsing through their artisanal products and kitchen tools section. Choosing a cosy table by the window, the overall ambience was relaxing and bright – perfect for brunch or afternoon coffee breaks.
Starting with drinks, we opted for two of their great-looking cocktails; we got the Sleepy Joe Sour (55 LE) – pineapple, lime, tanka bean, and coconut cream, and the Virgin Mary (55 LE) – spiced tomato Juice, green olives, celery, and pickles. Both beverages looked amazing and tasted even better. The presentation, portion, and quality of the ingredients upscaled the drinks to a high-end bar feel.
The salad and appetiser sections seemed very tempting, so we decided to get one salad to share. We settled on the Goat Cheese Fereekh Salad (115 LE) – pumpkin, beetroot, red onion, and spinach, all tossed in lemon dressing. This salad was a definite hit; the heartiness of the roasted vegetables, the freshness of the greens, and the creaminess of the cheese all meshed perfectly with the zesty fereekh.
After enjoying both our drinks and salad, we began browsing the main menu for our meals. Gone Fishin’ (148 LE) was our first option – battered zander fish, thick-cut chips, minted pea puree, and homemade tartar sauce. It was a perfectly executed fish dish. The fish was tender yet crispy on the outside, the chips were impeccably seasoned and fried, while the pea puree was the textbook mix between creamy, salty, and fresh. However, the only downside was the tartar sauce; it was more or less a tasty creamy herb sauce, but not tartar for sure.
Our other dish option was the Beef Tenderloin with Herb Dijon Mustard Butter (390 LE) – asparagus, sautéed spinach, portobello mushroom, truffle brie mash charred garlic potatoes. This dish left us speechless; the beef was cooked to perfection, medium-well, accurately buttered, and generously seasoned. The mashed potatoes were unprecedented; the creaminess and richness of the mash with the earthiness of the truffle made every bite taste heavenly. The vegetables brought the dish together and balanced out the richness of the protein and carbs on the plate.
Even though we were full by that time, their gourmandise patisserie and bakery is a must-try. The staff recommended we try their signature dessert, Hello, Pistachi-yo (98 LE) – milk cake, torched meringue, candied pistachio, ice cream, chocolate crumb, and crème anglaise. The dessert was a piece of deliciously irresistible art; all the elements complemented each other in the best way possible; the pistachio crème anglaise was the perfect thread to connect all the ingredients. Likewise, the milk cake was spongy yet rich, the ice cream had the right amount of sugar, and the meringue had the perfect crunch.
Our experience was nothing short of astounding; the staff, the ambience, the menu options, and everything between made Jones the Grocer a new neighbourhood favourite. Admittedly, the prices are a bit high, but considering the quality and options you get in return, it will definitely be worth it every time.