Ramy Soliman - File photo
Nothing is worse than breaking your fast over a cold soup and a mediocre meal served in crowded iftar buffets. Because we know how crucial—and challenging—it is to get a decent meal during the holy month outside of family and friends’ homes, we spoke to three food bloggers to bring you the foodies’ guide to good food in Ramadan. Three food bloggers pick their best spots for iftar and sohour.
Ramy Soliman says finding a place that offers high quality food in Ramadan is a bit difficult. “Only very few places present high-quality food in Ramadan,” says the food blogger who recommends two restaurants: The Edwards in Cairo Festival City Mall and Enab Beirut in Tivoli Dome, City Square in Rehab and Cairo Festival City. “The Edwards is international cuisine restaurant that offers not only mouthwatering food but a cozy atmosphere as well. I feel at home at Edwards. The food at Enab Beirut is really amazing,” Soliman adds.
Omar El Shabrawy admits that he is not a big fan of going out for iftar during Ramadan, especially for iftar buffets. “Despite this, I had a great iftar experience at Crave restaurant,” he says. El Shabrawy adds that everything was organized and served on time. “Just make sure you book ahead and place your orders and you'll definitely enjoy it,” he adds.
“I was impressed with two venues, the first is Fairmont Nile Towers buffet at Napa Grill,” says Karim Petsa. Petsa adds that the place has a huge variety of stations that he has never seen in a buffet before, Egyptian street food like liver and kidneys, Asian dishes and American steak. “They have amazing dessert variety as well,’’ Petsa adds. The second venue he recommends is also Enab Beirut. “We all agree that having iftar out in Ramadan could be a bad experience as the food may be served late and the quality of food is sometimes not good,” Petsa says. “However, Enab Beirut defied these issues and managed to serve a delicious iftar menu that was presented directly after adhan (call for prayers).”
Soliman highly recommends Taghmisa restaurant for ful and ta’miya (fava beans and Egyptian falafel). Located in Nasr City, the eatery opens at 9pm and offers “the best beans and falafel I have ever tasted in my life, they offer a lot of beans recipes that are all delicious,’’ says Soliman.
“One of the most unforgettable sohour experiences I've had was at the Four Seasons Nile Plaza hotel,” El Shabrawy recalls. “The restaurant at the pool area [Pool Grill] served the most amazing food, great variety of all the classic oriental sohour food, plus other stuff like this sweet potato appetizer with honey and cheese that I'll never forget.”
Petsa says that he is going to pick just one place he loved so much that he went there twice, despite the fact that he rarely eats sohour out in Ramadan; Ayadina restaurant in Heliopolis. “They have a splendid buffet with all the Lebanese mezze that you can imagine in addition to lots of yoghurt to help during fasting.”
Soliman recommends Cairo Marriott Hotel’s Ramadan tent. “Not only was the food splendid, the way they present it, the decor, the whole atmosphere was magnificent,” Soliman says explaining that the food was presented on carts.
El Shabrawy says that every year a new tent comes up and makes a new impression, in addition to the classic ones like Si Omar and 3al Nile. “However, I recommend 3al Tawla at Galleria 40, last year they had an impressive lineup of performers every weekend.”
Petsa strongly recommends Bab Al Sharq tent at Nile Ritz Carlton. “The view of the Egyptian Museum along with the Ramadan atmosphere and the screens that show almost all the Ramadan series will definitely put you in the right mood.”
Follow Ramy Soliman on Instagram @ramysoli, Omar El Shabrawy @omarsfood and Karim Petsa @Karimpetsadsis
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