Pangaea: Inventive Sandwich Haven in Mohandiseen
8 Amman Sqaure
8AM - 2AM
reviewed byreview it
Sitting amongst several other restaurants, cafés and bars on Amman Square, Pangaea offers quick, fresh sandwiches to their customers. The shop is small, but with glass walls and large windows, it feels much spacier than it is.
The use of natural wood furniture, small table-top plants, along with a clean, contemporary grey and white colour scheme reflects their motto of ‘eating clean’. A colourful graffiti mural is painted onto an old wooden door that leans against one of the walls and there are travel books for one’s reading pleasure; after all, Pangaea attempts to bring the corners of the world together with a range of signature international dishes, making their menu both interesting and diverse.
The eatery boasts freshly baked bread for their sandwiches and wraps, homemade sides, tomato-basil soup and a soup of the day (15LE/cup), wholesome salads and several desserts. Their drinks menu is packed with fresh juices, smoothies and hot drinks including chai tea (10LE) and cocoa (16LE).
Interestingly, the kitchen is completely on show through a glass window in the restaurant, meaning you can watch the chef cook your food from scratch.
We carefully picked one kofta, tomato and watercress wrap, known as ‘The Egyptian’ (23LE), and a steak, cheese, caramelised onions and tomato sandwich – ‘The American’ (27LE). We also went for two sides; coleslaw (7LE) and Swedish meatballs (15LE). For dessert, we were informed they were out of cookies (9LE), which left us with the choice of fruit (5LE-12LE) and the dessert of the day (14LE) which, luckily, turned out to be vanilla cheesecake.
Disappointingly, we were also informed they had no fresh juice or smoothies as they were changing over their suppliers. We settled for a diet Sprite (7.5LE) and a bottle of water (4.5LE).
After a short, five minute-or-so wait, we eagerly tucked into our Egyptian kofta wrap. Although it wasn’t huge, what it lacked in size, it more than made up for in taste. The kofta was perfectly seasoned and flavourful, juicy but not greasy, complemented perfectly by the chunks of ruby red, fresh tomato and watercress.
Next, we began inhaling our American sandwich, which was served in soft, lightly toasted ciabatta bread. However, rather than being the sweet, meaty treat we were expecting, we were greeted by pungent mustard, undercooked mushrooms and chewy steak pieces – they’d got our order wrong. Despite this, mustard fans might well be pleased with the concoction.
Our Swedish meatballs were slightly disappointing too; although they were absolutely delicious, there were just two little meatballs on a mountain of creamy mash, with a drizzle of gravy. The coleslaw was yummy too, but slightly overwhelmed by excess carrot.
Although served in a tiny slice, the cheesecake was the saving grace; fresh, smooth and creamy, topped off with a ripe piece of strawberry.
Despite the mix up, Pangaea provides healthy, tasty sandwiches and nicely portioned sides, perfect for a light takeaway, which certainly makes a change from all the unhealthy fast food chains in Cairo.