|Category:||Far Eastern & Asian|
|Opening hours:||7PM - 1AM (Fridays brunch from 1PM)|
|Price range:||Moderate (LE75 to LE150)|
|Payment method:||Cash, VI, MA|
By Eugenia Ugrinovich
What if I told you that it is possible to tour Vietnam, Thailand, China, Malaysia and Indonesia in not more than two hours? Would you consider me an illusionist bordering on insanity? Perhaps. But I can assure you that you wouldn’t have said that visiting the newly-opened Kamala at the deluxe Conrad hotel.
Probably the best décor Cairo has seen so far, Kamala is an intricate fusion of ancient Asian traditions and modern Western touch. Romantic and very secluded, the interiors are boasting black wood and fine dark marble creating a battle of darkness and light with the place’s luminous candles, covering everything from the floors and tables to stairs and even the tiny pond with artificial lilies. Kamala’s house music adds to the atmosphere of tranquility further intensified with the relaxing sound of water, peacefully rumbling in the pond; whereas those, who want to detach themselves from the surroundings, will be pleased to know that private dining is also at their disposal.
However, as much as the decoration is unbeatable, the food still gets my highest praises. Venue’s brief and to the point menu highlights a nice selection of Far Eastern specialties, featuring a whole range of spices and a bundle of selected herbs. Ginger, galangal, birds eye chili, shrimp paste, palm sugar, lime leaves, coriander, basil and mint – all find their way to the sophisticated dishes served in this restaurant in such an abundance. Carefully prepared and masterfully presented, all dishes are a sinfully delicious creation of three Asian chefs, producing their masterpieces in the open kitchen of the venue.
While your eyes are wonderingly going through the list of items offered, Kamala’s well-trained waiters will bring you a basket of crackers with three different sauces to keep you going. Light and crispy, they will surely tickle your tongue buds, leaving you craving for more filling options. Don’t worry; they will soon follow, thanks to the efficient and quick service. Appetizers like Goi Cuon (rice paper rolls filled with shrimps, glass noodles and fresh vegetables) and Laab Gai (spicy ground chicken and toasted sticky rice) are a good warm-up; and once you are done with them, try out Kamala’s assorted dim-sum delicacies, as the incomparable Steamed Chicken Dumplings or the somewhat sweet
Steamed Vegetable Dumplings. Eager to try something pepperish, hot and chili? How about Tom Yam Goong (spicy and sour clear soup with lemongrass, galangai and prawns)? Not spicy enough? Then venue’s main dishes will definitely do the trick. Try out the Ikan Kukus (steamed grouper fish with chili, garlic and lemongrass in cilantro sauce) or - if you are a toughie - Goong Phad Prik (spicy stir-fried jumbo prawns with Thai basil). Yet, those with a sensitive stomach can ask the waiter to avoid spices, risking to miss out the whole experience as well.
Make sure that after such a spicy meal you leave with something sweet in your stomach, and what can be better than Dadar Gulung (crepe roll stuffed with coconut jam) or Kluay Tod (deep fried bananas in grated coconut served with palm sugar sauce) to serve this purpose?
And if you think that this luxury is too inaccessible, think again. Prices are surprisingly moderate, considering the quality of food and the value of their service.