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

Greek Club

The Greek Club: Seafood in Alexandria With A Great View

reviewed by
Soraya Morayef
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The Greek Club:  Seafood in Alexandria With A Great View

To many Cairenes, a trip to Alexandria during the
winter season is a very popular weekend option. More or less, Cairene tourists
follow the same basic formula in Alexandria:
fish, a walk on the Corniche and a visit to the Bibliotheca Alexandrina.

When it comes to fish; trying to figure out
the best seafood restaurant in Alexandria
is rather pointless: every Alexandrian seafood connoisseur (i.e. pretty
much the entire population) has a favourite restaurant, and everyone strongly
believes that their favourite restaurant is better than anyone else’s. Avoid the heated debate; and head out to the
Greek Club to decide for yourself.

Blessed with a sublime view of the
Alexandrian port on one side and the Qaitbay fort on the other, the Greek Club’s terrace is one of the most popular dining destinations in this
tiny town of nine million. You’d better be a regular customer or book in
advance, though; the terrace is extremely popular and fully booked on weekends.
In the summer, you can enjoy a cool breeze outside and watch the small sailing
boats racing in the marina, while the winter brings out the much-appreciated
oil heaters.

The restaurant’s interior is decorated in a
rather harried mixture of Greek and seafood memorabilia. A large open freezer on the left side has the fish of the day arranged,
while a chalkboard sign next to it carries the restaurant’s recommendations. A
wine basket on your right subtly suggests that alcohol is available.

Once you’ve been seated at your wooden
table decked in baby-blue cloth, you will be served a basket carrying fresh,
hot white bread. Resist the urge to gorge yourself on the tasty bread; and save
it for the restaurant’s best appetisers (starting at 15LE): the Greek salad is zingy and tasty,
with thyme leaves complementing the feta cheese cubes; the tehina is suitably
creamy and not too thick; and their taramah is especially delectable. This
Greek dip of creamy fish roe is so good; many regulars come here just for this
salty delight.

If you don’t mind crunching on baby fish;
try the bessaria, which are coated in flour and deep-fried, and can be easily
chewed and swallowed whole if you’re not the queasy type. Also try the breaded
and fried calamari, which come nicely hot with a side of lemon wedges, though
the healthier grilled option is equally popular. Another favourite is the
grilled octopus; so try all three and decide for yourself.

The restaurant makes a great presentation
of your seafood platter: a large fish (try the Wa’aar) is presented on a glass
plate with potatoes and lemon slices arranged around it. The waiter expertly
prepares every plate at the table with a perfect portion of the still-steaming
fish meat. The side dishes of brown rice
are often neglected as you will likely stuffed yourself full with dips and
bread; so share a plate with the rest of your party.

If the heavy seafood meal has sent you into
a sulphur-induced coma, we recommend a cup of tea or their lemon juice. Opt out
of the dessert, and head two blocks down to the Azza ice cream stall nearby.
Take a walk along the pier outside and try a cup of hot black tea from one of
the street stalls for a truly enjoyable Alexandrian experience.

The Greek Club is an excellent option for
out-of-towners, business guests and relatives that you want to impress. An
average meal with shared appetisers and main courses as well as a drink will
probably average at 150LE per person.

360 Tip

The Greek Club is located next to the Alexandria Yacht Club at the Eastern end of the Alexandrian Corniche. Just tell your taxi driver to take you to Qaitbay in bahari, and look out for the Greek flag posted at the ground-floor entrance.

Best Bit

The Greek Club serves arguably the best view of the Alexandrian marina.

Worst Bit

The terrace can get quite overcrowded and booking can be difficult; so make sure you have reservations.

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