If you are one of the people who regularly crave sushi then you are either loaded and willing to pay the big bucks or you practice admirable self control.
In Cairo, sushi is expensive. It s offered in restaurants where they charge you for the mere act of taking you to the table you reserved a week earlier.
Not in Makani.
The multi-branch café and restaurant, whose name translates to My Place , offers cheap sushi. And it s good too.
For LE 50 you can get 12 well-sized pieces. The filling plate – well, this depends on your appetite – will leave your wallet intact and your taste buds thankful.
I know what mine are; Makani s eel, salmon and California rolls are to die for. And I always keep going for more.
Although some special orders, like the Caviar maki, are on the expensive side (three pieces for LE 60), they remain, as the name suggests, special orders. The norm is good taste for less money.
But sushi is a relatively new introduction to Makani, which has set up special sushi bars in its branches. Although the sushi addition made the place more popular among the fans of Japanese cuisine and ranked the restaurant high up among the venues that offer affordable sushi, Makani was already a hot spot sans the raw fish.
Whether it was the first branch in Sharm El Sheikh or the others in Heliopolis and Mohandiseen, the oriental deco, with the touch of modernity, has always been a hub for a hip young clientele looking for a chat over coffee and a light meal.
Regulars are either college students or 20-somethings. You are usually surrounded by study groups (especially during finals high time), others using laptops (the place offers Wi-fi connection) or a couple of friends with a deck of cards.
The place oozes with coziness; one of my friends calls it the kitchen, in reference to both the comfortable setting and the one drawback the place has: it could get stuffy with all the food and the people.
And yes, guests order foods other than sushi. There is a wide range of cakes, pastries, sandwiches and salads. Tuna (LE 14.50 for a regular, LE 17 for a large and LE 19.50 for a salad) and Turkey club (LE 15.50) are must tries.
Most menu items could be served as sandwiches or salads. You could even get a salad with up to three different orders: say mix cheese, curry chicken and tikka chicken.
If you like your food spicy, tell the waiters but make it clear how hot you want it because the chef can go all the way.
But the sushi, the food and the cozy setting aren t the sole reason why I keep going to Makani. The service is the place s edge. Although waiters could be overloaded with work at time, slowing the pace a bit, they remain friendly and accommodating.
Address: 9 Amr St. Off Syria St. Mohandiseen, Giza.Tel: 02-3030491/02-3030492