Located on busy Brazil Street in Zamalek, Lychee is the newest addition to the island’s ever-expanding food choices.
Pronounced to rhyme with Amici, Lychee takes the concept of a regular juice place, a fairly well-established concept with the likes of City Drink and X, and turns it on its head by repackaging it in a more stylish way and going the extra mile by offering what the founders call “the whole fruit experience.”
“Contrary to what many believe, the idea did not come from the juices but from the fruits themselves. We wanted to offer a place where people could buy fresh fruits as easily as they could junk food. The juices are an extension of that experience,” said Mohamed Yassin, co-founder of Lychee.
Yassin and his partner Mohamed Assy picked Brazil Street because of its popular restaurants. “The area has become like a giant food court. It is a prime location for a flagship store. We are also not competing with any of the places around us. We actually think we are complementing them. People can grab fruits right after they are done with their burgers.”
Most of their cocktails are priced between EGP 14 to EGP 17. We tried a delicious combination of strawberry, kiwi, and fresh mint for EGP 17. We opted to try it without sugar, but the cocktail was still sweet enough and bursting with flavour.
Lychee also offers a selection of other hot and cold drinks that do not necessarily involve fruit, such as tea, in addition to a fresh fruits and fruit salads.
“The fruit is delivered daily to our store and our fruit salads that have not been sold are given away at the end of the day in order to keep everything fresh,” said Yassin.
Quality control is what makes Lychee what it is, according to Yassin. “We use premium suppliers and we receive fruit daily,” he said. “We only use the top brands for imported fruit; we use Dole for bananas and pineapples, we get green apples from an Italian brand and red apples from an American brand, and so on.”
“We have a step-by-step manual for smoothies and cocktails so that anyone can mix them and they will taste the same. We also use special blenders that take into account the ingredients so that the consistency is just right,” he said.
Lychee is planning on expanding, both in terms of location and offerings. “We are considering universities, clubs and other prime locations in neighbourhoods like Heliopolis and Maadi, but we are waiting for a few months to get our foot on the ground before we can start doing that,” Yassin said.
The next time you have a serious debate over which burger place to choose in Zamalek, be thankful that you only have to think of Lychee to fulfil all your fruit needs.