Gourmet summer burgers

Nothing can quell the craving for a burger when it hits. There’s something about the juiciness, the lettuce crunch, the sauce… even the side of fries. Something about the fabulousness of the burger has given it a permanent place on the beachside/poolside menu, next to a pizza and cold fizzy drink. 

Cairo certainly has its share of fast food restaurants and a long list of ten-minute burgers that can arrive at your door before you’ve even finished making your order. But for a real burger, with fresh ingredients and thick grilled meat, there are only a handful of restaurants that will do, and only three that we deem worthy of mention. Plan ahead so you don’t mind the wait for these fabulous, well-thought out and expertly cooked gourmet burgers.


The original Cairo gourmet burger. Lucille and her little Maadi restaurant were the first to put Egypt on the gourmet burger map. Articles framed and posted on the wall of Lucille’s tell the story of the little American restaurant and the delicious burgers it produced. Although Lucille’s itself won’t deliver, Lucille has allowed a second Road 9 location to deliver certain items on the menu–mainly, the burgers. If you’d rather not deal with the fries (they’re puffy, regular fries), you can order a baked potato on the side (try to convince yourself that it lessens the calorie intake of the burger itself).

Recommendation: The Western Barbecue Bacon Burger – with beef bacon and actual crisp onion rings. You can’t go wrong!

For delivery, call: 02-2378-1530

The Burger Kitchen

One of Maadi’s little mysteries, the Burger Kitchen (casually known as TBK) openly raves about its fresh fresh ingredients and crisp condiments (lettuce, tomato, and onion) that come individually packaged so as not to wilt from the heat of the burger during delivery. TBK delivers–only! Good luck finding a restaurant: The TBK motorcycles are parked on Road 9 in front of what appears to be Kodak. They offer a regular size and a “dinner” size of burger, and have fries and wedges. For anyone in your party who doesn’t want to burger with you, VITAL (TBK’s sister salad-only selection) is now finally orderable through TBK.

Recommendation: Mushroom Max – loaded with fabulous mushroooms

For delivery, call: 16676

The Napa Grill – Fairmont Nile City

A new but strong contender on Cairo’s gourmet burger list is Fairmont’s Napa Grill. Their summer-inspired burger extravaganza has taken the Nile City Towers by storm and Fairmont’s butler-clad delivery men are appearing at an increasingly large number of offices with burgers in large, gold-colored boxes. Although the Napa Grill has now settled on four semi-permanent burgers, its other selections change weekly as chef Matthew Gilbert concocts newer and more scrumptious burger combinations. In an office tasting session, top contenders were the Backyard Burger and the Caprese Burger (with fresh buffalo mozzarella)–both of which are available for delivery if you work at the Nile Towers. If you don’t, call ahead and send someone to pick them up.

Recommendation: For barbecue lovers, the Backyard Burger; for basil lovers, the Caprese Burger; and an in-house recommendation, the Sonoma.

For delivery (in the Nile City Towers), call: 01-2461-9633

Yes, gourmet burgers take a little extra effort. Whether it’s the wait or the actual trip out to get them, a gourmet burger is not a slap dash decision to fill your tummy–they are the only real antidote to a true burger craving. And although they will leave you in just as big a post-meal stupor as any other filling meal, the post-gourmet burger buzz is sweetened by the knowledge that the fresh ingredients and extended time mean you’ve treated yourself to something special.

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