|Opening hours:||noon - midnight|
Cairo has changed dramatically in the last 50 years, but this tiny bistro tucked away in a small alley, gives diners a chance to experience a bygone era.
It’s a small place, and ambience is old-time elegance and walls are covered with paintings of upcoming local artists. The end of the room is dominated by a heavy wooden bar, complete with mashrabia panelling, and an ornate, gilded mirror.
The menu at Estoril consists of classic Arabic dishes, many of which have been given a French twist includes a variety of hot and cold mezze, all masterfully prepared. Even the hommus and taboulah are outstanding. The succulent veal medallions, gratuitously showered in tarragon and mushrooms, is always a good call. The chicken with molokheiya is particularly good. There’s also a good selection of seafood, and – unusually for Egypt – a decent choice of quality veggie dishes. Leave room for homemade mahalabiyya (rice pudding) or creme caramel.
The staff are very welcoming, and the service is generally excellent: attentive and efficient, without being fussy, although they can be a little overwhelmed when it gets busy (which is often during the weekends).
A delightful, and unpretentious, touch of times gone by.
Estoril can get quite busy on Thursdays and it’s advisable to book in advance.
Esroril is shut during the month of August and Ramadan.