Have introduced a new range of savoury dishes at their CityStars and Downtown Mall branches, we headed to Mandarine Koueider for *GASP* dinner...
Mandarine Koueider, the famous sweet house that has been satisfying sweet teeth for years, has made a huge change in their menu. Worry not; basbousa, ice cream and the prettiest and most delicious cakes in town are still part of everyday life at the Downtown Katameya address, however, the kitchen has expanded. Next to delivering the best sweets, Mandarine Koueider is now serving the best in lunch and dinner choices, along with their delightful desserts and tasty shishas. We headed out to New Cairo to assess whether they do chicken, beef and shrimps as well as they do sweets. Spoiler Alert: the expansion into dining has well and truly succeeded!
The charm of Mandarine Koueider caught up with us as soon as we entered. Being surrounded by candy, baked treats and ice cream left, right and centre has the tendency to make one feel like a five-year old, and one’s birthday has come early. We found it particularly hard accepting that there is dinner waiting before we could indulge in this ridiculous choice of puddings. How good can a dinner at a sweet house be, right? The answer came quickly as we were served Chicken Milanese, Beef and Shrimp Fajitas and Mandarine Burger: Really freaking good!
The Chicken Milanese was a perfectly prepared chicken breast topped with turkey and cheese as well as an incredible béchamel sauce. Served with fries and fresh, steamed vegetables, this meal set our taste buds on a journey we simply never expected from a sweet house. But there were even more savoury choices, such as the fajitas which were served sizzling hot, straight from the pan. It was mind-blowing to think that the kitchen that so far has focused on making wedding cakes could also whip out a freshly-prepared blend of meat, shrimp and vegetables on a skillet that tastes like these chefs never did anything else in their entire lives. Needless to say, the burgers were also cooked to perfection and complemented with all the trimmings a proper burger needs. Mandarine Koueieder had proven it is indeed #NotJustASweetHouse.
In a society that likes to overdo things, we did not expect for Mandarine Koueider to get it right like that. Just because a place knows one thing well, such as sweets, means they get others right, such as pastas. However, Mandarine Koueider has evidently done the homework and expanded to serve hot foods after thorough preparation on how to deliver dinner as well as dessert. Since it wouldn’t have been right to leave the famous venue for all kinds of desserts, the choice was now ours whether we were going for a sundae, a slice of cake or some old fashioned baklawa to delight our palates with after a succulent dinner. Since the term “best ice cream in town” had fallen way too often, we opted for a sundae of lemon, Nutella and Strawberry Cheesecake ice cream.
Despite the fact that ice cream melts in your mouth whatever it tastes like, this ice cream deserved its “best ice cream in town” superlative. Eating a whole jar of Nutella couldn’t beat this tasty composition of vanilla or chocolate ice cream with Nutella swirls. Eating lemon ice cream also beat eating a lemon but not just because it is an infinitely more pleasant experience: Mandarine Koueider’s lemon ice cream is the refreshing mix of sweet and sour, making it summer in your mouth although, technically, it’s still winter. Finally, strawberry cheesecake ice cream is the perfect compromise to missing out on their cheesecake but it couldn’t have been better than this ice cold treat, or could it? We guess we will have to go back to find out…
Find out more about Mandarine Koueider here.