There are two kinds of people in this world; those that eat to live and others that live to eat. I must admit, I fall into the latter tribe. Having said that, quality plays a big part in what I choose to put on my plate and the element of fresh, innovative brands are always the first to be elected as my go-to’s.
Lokali is a young farm-to-table concept that has recently solidified its roots in Cairo’s popular expat neighborhood, Maadi. With an extensive array of fun items on the menu, nearly 90% of all items are locally sourced from places as far as Siwa.
The name plays well when meeting the girls behind it all, who are all local Egyptians who have either been trained by the finest or have a special finesse when it comes to good food. Their concept is to serve homemade goodness whilst offering an animal and family-friendly atmosphere for them to enjoy.
I was able to try a couple of the dishes and get the gist of why this place stands as a local hotspot that’s on any foodie’s bucket list that is visiting the city.
First off were a fresh Mixed Green and Strawberry salad, which I also added slow cooked duck to for a little fine-tuning. The portions were generous, served in a clay bowl with an interesting placement for the dressing which was absolutely divine and worth the trip on its own. The dish ended up falling under the range of EGP 100, which is comparable to that served in many similar style eateries of its type.
Next was a sharing frenzy of guilty pleasures, from burgers to pizza, Lokali’s take on standard dishes falls as unique and thoughtful.
We choose to go with two types of pizza, one being their burrata pizza as well as their Armenian sausage, which is locally sourced from an Armenian butcher that makes her own sausages. The chef chooses to infuse another very local elements to the dish being Romi cheese; a cheese found in Egypt and enjoyed in many forms, my favorite when melted.
I would recommend both as they are not similar in what they offer, yet the Armenian is for those looking for something different with a little spice.
The Lokali burger is one for the books, definitely standing as one of the top homemade style burgers I have ever tasted in the city to date. We opted for the goat cheese and caramelized onions as our extra toppings as it was definitely a treat. Served with homestyle fries and freshly baked buns, the portion was once again very generous allowing you to potentially share this and the salad with your plus one, or devour it on a Friday morning after a long night out.
Chicken and Waffles, a popular dish in the Americas, is also on the menu, a hefty dish not for the week, this mesh of sweet and sour will definitely be the first of its kind for your taste buds. Deep fried chicken is served in a typical fashion on a bed of waffles with cheese and other delights that bring the dish to life. Not my favorite, this is definitely an acquired taste yet definitely worth trying at least once.
Most mains fall between the EGP 110 to 140 range, making it affordable and filling all at the same time.
You must have a sweet tooth for this final round. Lokali’s Date Fondant is a stunner, from the soufflé like-form it is presented as to the taste it delivers. Served with homemade ice cream or cream and dates from Fayoum, it is definitely a must try. Easily shared between the table, this dish falls at around EGP 70.
My overall take is that although some items may be a little heavier than others, all dishes presented serve the same element of detail and thought presented to them. Although I have not tried the extensive breakfast/brunch menu Lokali serves if it’s anything like the rest, I am sure I will be impressed.