On the 36th floor, encased in a cozy glass enclave with a triumphant view, sits OPIA – Ramses Hilton’s decadent lounge and bar. We enjoyed a memorable evening with friends, tucking into both savory and sweet bites and delicious cocktails.
Dishes and drinks sampled: We began the evening with an introduction to the menu by our server. He informed us that a variety of cocktails prepared on the premises are homemade infusions devised by the brains behind the bar, spirits mixed with herbal undertones come together in a unique combination and twist resulting in really flavorful pairings. For starters, we tried the Chunky Summer, a vodka-based zesty peach ice tea beverage with a kick of lemon and mint. It’s refreshing, fruity, and the perfect sundowner beverage to banish the weariness of a long day. My friend opted for the Cure For Scurvy, a delicious creamy Orange Rum cocktail mixed with Bailey’s, Chocolate, and Strawberry flavors, while another friend went for the Ramses Garden, a gin cocktail with apple juice, cucumber, mint, and tonic. A fresh breadbasket with a delightful dipping sauce of olive oil, pomegranate syrup laced with an amazing smoky flavor was also on hand to whet the appetite, alongside succulent chicken bites on a bed of light fluffy garlic dip – tomeya.
We delved into the savory bites menu, opting for the Sea Scallops, resting on a bed of creamy artichoke puree and served with a tart and delicious lemon dip. Next came the Chicken Gyros, open style gyros filled with tender chicken slices and yogurt sauce, accompanied by a pot of perfectly crisped potato wedges and fluffy tomeya sauce. We also sampled the Duck Breast, served on a bed of sweet potato puree with alfalfa sprouts and mushroom sauce – generous, and the sauce complemented the duck wonderfully. We rounded off the savory selection with perfectly chargrilled bites of Beef Fillet topped with a scrumptious jus – simply delicious and tender.
To round off the evening, we indulged in some sweet bites to satisfy the sugar cravings. Crispy squares of Baklava paired with cinnamon ice cream, a Raspberry Log served with creamy vanilla ice cream, and a unique Thyme Parfait with delicate lemon foam and meringue sheets. We capped the evening with another round of beverages – The Moscow Hinney, a sweet vodka cocktail paired with ginger for a kicky undertone. The Hidden Valley featured rum, cranberry juice and rosemary syrup blended really nicely in a light and fresh finish, and their signature drink the Basil Bee’s Knees combined gin, basil and honey in an unbelievably tasty combination that made it clear why it is a favorite.
The menu at Opia is creative, bursting with flavor, and the presentation and combination of unusual tastes leaves you wanting to come back for more.
Décor: Glitzy and glamorous setting, the massive chandelier in the center of the space sets the tone for where you are. Massive floor to ceiling windows offer an impressive view of Cairo from above, with stunning views that captivate your attention throughout the visit. A touch of millennial is still present, with the rather large lit up #OpiaInTheSky dominating presence and reminding visitors to plug in on social media. Menus are also presented on iPads.
Ambience: This is the perfect place for a sunset meal to impress a date or out-of-town guests. The servers genuinely seem happy and proud to be serving you, and know each dish and drink inside out. DJs spin tracks from 9 pm and music gets louder after 11 pm.
Clientele mix: Couples take in the view and enjoy intimate dinners in the early evening, with a younger crowd expected on the weekend and in the later hours of the night.
Price range: Above average, but more affordable than expected – well worth the money spent in any case.
Opening hours: 5 pm – 2 am. Reservations required through Facebook
Address: 1115 Corniche El Nile, Cairo
Tel: 012 2933 3287