After receiving rave reviews of its Maadi branch, Asian restaurant Fusion went from the Nile banks of suburban Cairo to the center of the bustling city with its new Mohandiseen branch.
Trying to find a parking spot in Abdel Moneim Riyad Street can be a challenge, but Fusion has that covered with valet parking.
You walk into the restaurant to the sound of soothing Asian beats playing in the background, and are promptly seated by the friendly waiters. We took a seat by the large glass windows overlooking the street and letting in the sunlight. It was lunchtime on a weekday and only a few tables were occupied.
The décor is simple. Wooden brown floors, red and beige furniture and posters featuring Asian symbols, Chinese writing and images of Buddha adorn the walls.
While the interior design may be generic, the food is far from ordinary.
Beer and wine are available, but we decided on soft drinks – it was barely afternoon after all.
The menu is divided into three categories: Sushi, Teppanyaki and the standard main dishes.
First timers will find the waiters helpful in recommending dishes and explaining unfamiliar terms. There is a wide selection of sushi and maki, but we decided to focus on the specialties.
For starters, we opted for Miso soup (LE 12), steamed wontons (LE 25), Thai shrimp wraps (LE 40) and sukimono (sweet pickles) (LE 8).
The soybean paste, tofu and seaweed soup really whets your appetite.
Although it was tasty and light, the soup was served lukewarm – not as hot as I would have preferred.
The steamed chicken-filled wontons were chewy, but they were overshadowed by the sumptuous Thai shrimp wraps: perfectly spicy, crunchy and accompanied with a sweet chilly sauce.
My friend was fixated on the sukimono though, and kept asking for more. Imagine my amusement when I researched the term and found out it actually means nymphomaniac in Japanese.
I ordered Teppanyaki for the main course because the pleasant aroma of the traditional Japanese dish wafted through the air from the iron griddle where it was being cooked.
I chose Seabass (LE 60) from a selection of seafood, vegetables, beef and chicken.
The dish tasted as good as it smelled, paired with a side of cabbage cooked with the fish. I also ordered a side of vegetable fried noodles (LE 18) that was tasty but quite heavy.
My dinner companion ordered the beef Kung Pow (LE 42), which consisted of shredded beef, colored peppers, spring onions, small red chilies, mushrooms and peanuts. It was topped off perfectly with a sweet and spicy sauce.
She also ordered a side of vegetable rice (LE 12) that had too many peas for her liking. She probably regretted letting me taste her dish because I kept dipping into it again and again. Next time, I’m having what she had.
By this part of the meal we were dreadfully full but still wanted to try their desserts. We took a time out, sipping on Jasmine tea (LE 9 for two) until our stomachs were ready for another strike.
We ordered one dish of deep fried fresh fruits (your choice of apple, pineapple or banana – we chose banana) with vanilla ice cream (LE 20).
It was definitely worth squeezing it into our full tummies. The combination of hot bananas and ice cream was delightful, leaving a lingering taste of sweet honey. The portion could’ve been bigger though.
The bill came in at around LE 160 each, split halfway.
All in all, it was a delicious dining experience. Fusion bridges the gap between the pricey Asian restaurants and the cheaper junk food outlets. Doubtless, I’ll be back for more.
Fusion Abdel Moneim Riyad Street(02) 3762 5252