Welatain: Spicy Comfort Food in Maadi
There’s no food you love-to-hate more than greasy, fried fast-food. There’s just something about it. But think about when you order that late night burger or fried chicken; it’s a process of moving between several restaurants and picking the one you’re least bored of.
Having originally found fame in Heliopolis and Nasr City, Welatain has since expanded into Maadi, occupying an impossible-to-miss large space on the intersection of El Nasr Street and El Laselky Street.
Welatain doesn’t offer anything you can’t find at KFC, Cook Door or Hardees – let’s be serious, these restaurants don’t differ much. What it does offer though, is a relatively cheaper alternative.
The spacious venue is brightly lit and occupied by several seating areas in the typical fast food diner fashion. The servers greet you from behind the counter with a smile and take down your order promptly. You can then either wait to take it back to your table, or just sit down and have them bring it over – the usual, really.
What Welatain specialise in is the spicy food and offer their sandwiches in different sizes, including the Torbiny – a 50cm monster that’s not for the faint of heart. We opted for a Sub Chicken combo (25LE) and a Hareeka Sandwich (19LE) with an additional Crispy Fries order (8LE) side.
The Sub Chicken is a very standard chicken fillet with cheddar cheese, mayo and lettuce – neither terrible nor awesome. The chicken is cooked well, the cheddar and mayo work and the lettuce is crisp and fresh. The fries, however, fluctuate in quality as was proved by two separate visits. At the time of the review, they were cooked to a near perfect crunch, though during a visit two days prior, they were coarsely cut, soggy and just overall unpleasant.
The Hareeka Sandwich – a fried chicken breast topped with a surprisingly tasty buffalo sauce – was definitely the winner of the two. The chicken was fried well, retained an excellent crunch and the seasoning packed it with flavor despite being smothered in sauce.
The Crispy Fries – regular French fries coated in a seasoned batter – were also a treat, providing a different texture and an interesting take that is every bit as addictive as the popular Hardees curly fries.
Though there’s nothing to wow diners, here, Welatain does what it aims to do: provide affordable and tasty fast food. Even if it doesn’t become one of your favourites, it’ll definitely become a fast food alternative to the other chains whose menus we have all come to know by heart.