Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Mezzaluna - Italian

Next to Bull's Eye Pub
32 Jeddah Street
02 3335 3273

According to wikipedia A Mezzaluna is a chopping instrument consisting of a single or double curved blade with a handle on each end. They are often used for chopping herbs or very large single blade versions are sometimes used for pizza or pesto. Mezzaluna is the Italian name (meaning Half Moon after the rough shape of the blade) for the item and is the most common name used in the UK.

I had eaten here once before and really loved the food, but I'm not a frequent Italian food eater. I find a lot of the dishes served in Italian Restaurants (not to be thought of as comprehensive introductions to Italian food) to be high on white sauce and cheese.

We decided on the spur of the moment to visit Bulls Eye pub since we were in the area, but since we did not have reservations, we were kindly guided to their sister restaurant.

They do serve alcohol and I had an awesome tequila for 20LE which did not need to be disguised with salt or lime. (Yes, thats the mark of a good tequila) Vodka was 25LE. They do serve some wines but they also have free corkage on imported wines if you would like to carry your own .

They offered a free starter of bruschetta with an olive tapenade dip, which was great. Light and appealing.

We ordered the fried calamari (32LE) Please ignore the order as a craving for deep fried sea food. I don't think this is a real Italian starter but it was tasty served on a bed of shredded lettuce and with a salty butter dip.

The piece-de-resistance was the Jambon cuit au gratin(24LE) which was a slice of bruschetta with a rolled slice of ham on top, white sauce inside the roll and cascading down the sides. yummo!

Their menu keeps changing regularly, so you may not get tomorrow what you enjoyed today, but there will definitely be some items on the menu that you can enjoy.

Husband had a ravioli gorgonzola (blue cheese stuffing and walnut dressing) - 28LE, which was quite good but not as good as the apricot and chicken stuffed ravioli with almond slivers that I had, had the good fortune of tasting on my previous visit.

The veal Ossobuco (55LE) was falling off the bone and was served with a mildy flavoured turmeric and parsley risotto. A far cry from the traditional saffron flavored risotto except for the colouring, the mild risotto was a perfect foil for the heavy tomato and garlic based ossobuco. The risotto tasted best with the marrow from the bone which was light, yet buttery.

We ended the meal with a decadent chocolate fondue (32LE) which was served with banana, peaches and apricots. I had so hoped for cake and ladies fingers. Hence, I ended up drinking the fondue when I could take no more of the fruit. The chocolate had a fine hazelnut taste which leads me to suspect that it was no more than a melted & diluted nutella. But whatever it was, it was extremely tasty.

Loved the food on both visits and highly recommend it to anyone seeking Italian food in Cairo.

For more reviews check Egypt Today or Al Ahram

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