Monday, September 28, 2009

A Watering Place Dries Up

For many, many years Christo, the fish restaurant across the road from the Mena House Oberoi at Giza, has been a favourite place to take visitors for a nice fish dinner and a beer or glass of wine while watching the lights of the Sound And Light play across the pyramids on the hill. Yesterday I met some friends of friends in the US who were visiting Cairo for dinner there and found to my disappointment that the restaurant has been bought by new owners who have decided that they will no longer serve alcohol. Christo was never exactly a riotous beer brawl sort of establishment in the first place, but nibbling on calamari and shrimp while sipping a cool Stella was a lovely way to spend a summer evening. My friends were still happy with the dinner, having no real reference point, but I found that not only did I miss the liquid refreshments, but the food isn't as good as it used to be either. Salads and fish were not as fresh. Another tradition falls by the wayside.

copyright 2009 Maryanne Stroud Gabbani

5 comments:

helperF1 said...

less people will die under the wheels of drunk drivers in Cairo then. It's a good thing

Abu Dhabi/UAE Daily Photo said...

Bummer. Is this happening more in Cairo these days? Hotels/restaurants not service alcohol?

Maryanne Stroud Gabbani said...

Drunk driving isn't that much of a problem here. Driving is so insane that no one wants to try to do it drunk, but it was really nice to be able to sit under the stars, sip a beer and munch on calamari.

Lisa said...

Too bad. Beer and a good meal is a great combination.

brittelizabeth said...

What a shame! My husband and I spent our honeymoon in Egypt in October 2008. On our last day, we enjoyed the fish and Stellas just before sunset.

We were the only guests on the upper terrace and felt so special -- in addition to the gorgeous view, the staff treated us like royalty.

They even presented us with a small package of bread as we left, which we carried all the way back to San Francisco with us. :)

I'll always think fondly of Christo, but I'm sorry to hear a nice beer is now off-limits.