What could have been better than a leisurely late lunch on a sunny winter afternoon? Especially when it was in a secluded spot that had not popped up on our radar before. Some new discoveries just have to be shared.
Type of cuisine & Signature Dishes
Nestled in a sheltered garden at the foot of the iconic Cairo Tower, Jemezeh offers excellent Lebanese cuisine.
Signature dishes include the Kebba Labanaya, Batata Harra, Chicken Livers with Pomegranate Molasses, Muhammara, Tabbouleh
Lunch kicked off with freshly baked, puffy Lebanese bread, accompanied by covetable little metal containers with olive paste and zaatar with olive oil.
We soon had a table brimming over with fresh, citrusy tabbouleh, chicken livers with pomegranate molasses; fiery batata harra; tiny aromatic makanek sausages bathed in the same delightfully sticky molasses; hot, thin slices of manakish with halloumi and zaatar; Kebba Labanya; perfectly spiced, tender shish taouk, fluffy white rice and a tasty muhammara. The spicy batata harra had us diving for our lemon juice with mint at first, but we quickly polished it off.
Each dish was cooked well, and presented with total authenticity. The menu itself is long and very comprehensive, so newcomers to Lebanese food should feel free to call on the expert assistance of the helpful waiters. We had no regrets about going with their recommendations. The kebba came in a creamy sauce, just right for scooping up with the fluffy rice. The muhammara was a subtle-but-rich blend of red peppers, ground walnuts, pomegranate molasses and spices and tempted us to go in for a second round.
We couldn’t pass up on something sweet to balance the savoury spiciness of our meal, so we went for the all-time favorites Om Ali and mango konafa with eshta. There was just time for a shisha with mastica before hitting the road, even though we could easily have lingered on a while longer quite happily.
Other Menu Items that Appealed & Beverage Options
We are sure the boneless Chicken Mosaheb would live up to expectations, and would also go for the Charcoal Grilled Kabab.
Beverages are plentiful, from fresh juices, coffee, tea and soft drinks to local beer and wine.
Don’t expect bling, this open-air venue draws on an ever-so-slightly-down-at-heel ambience that gives the feel of having been there for generations. All part of the charm.
The whole feel was of being in an enchanting time warp, with the long-established gentility of Zamalek setting the mood. Weekends and special holidays offer live entertainment with a singer crooning in both English and Arabic.
Clientele Mix & Price Range
Young couples, local residents, families on weekends, and being part of Cairo Tower, a growing number of tourists.
This has to be up there with the best value dining in town. Prices are very reasonable, and the quality of food is excellent.
Take Uber or Careem (or a taxi of course). Parking is scant, but will hopefully be available in the near future.
Opening hours: 10 am to 12 am. Breakfast, a choice of Egyptian, Lebanese or Continental, is available from 10 am to 1 pm.
Address: Cairo Tower (or Borg El Qahira)
Tel: 0127 100 5535
Facebook: The Cairo Tower