The Streat: Quirky Burger Joint in Heliopolis
For new restaurants in Cairo to compete with the city’s major franchises requires an innovative take on regular methods. The Streat has now joined the ranks of the many home-grown businesses that we hope can do just that. Finding the place is made easy by the large neon sign erected at the concrete steps leading down into the store.
With only two steel countertops and a couple unvarnished wooden bar stools, the eatery is not the most spacious. However, we did notice some signs of construction which hinted at future expansion. The Streat has an underground vibe, complete with giant graffiti murals, bottle tops swinging above metal buckets on large barrels and aluminium lamp shades. Pictures of both icons and infamous characters included Hulk Hogan and Saddam Hussein whilst rock music blared from the speakers.
The menu couldn’t be any simpler, and with exactly five items advertised, we ordered one of everything; a Streat burger (10LE), hotdog (9LE), potato chips (5LE), soft ice-cream (5LE), and soft drinks (6LE). The plexi-glass window behind the cashier makes for an entertaining view into the kitchen where the chef char-grills the meat.
The hotdogs were the first to leave the kitchen and were delivered on a small pizza peel that was left on the counter. The bread tasted a little stale, but didn’t distract from the juicy and perfectly seared hotdogs themselves. With squeezey bottles filled with ketchup, mustard and tehina on the countertops, in addition to salt and pepper, seasoning was easily accessible.
Next up, were the main attraction: the burgers. The delicious, mildly smoked bread bun complemented the intense succulence of the meat perfectly. The medium-cut fries arrived soon after; unpeeled and a golden-brown, they were both crispy on the outside and fluffy in the centre. Last up was the delicious, soft ice-cream. The fact that they only stock vanilla flavour is made up for by the way that it’s mixed to create a stiff texture with a subtle icy crunch.
Don’t let outward appearances fool you, the Streat, while hidden underground, houses amazing food and funky décor.