Eating in Egypt

Published January 20, 2017 by microncat

So, yesterday I got a post in my Facebook feed, telling about the upcoming NoshUp at Koshary in a couple of weeks.  I’ve been looking at the place as I’ve driven by there recently, and looking forward to checking it out, so I suggested it as our date night dinner.

Ginny and I got there about 5:15pm, and tonight is a Thursday.  There was one table of three guys seated, and no staff in sight.  After being there and ignored for a few minutes, we decided to take a seat.  The decor is pleasant, with what appear to be hooked rugs featuring the images of some Egyptian gods (see one of them above the men in the picture on the left.)  The ceiling is painted sky blue, with silver clouds.  It was quiet, with just the one other table at the time, and there was no muzak.

Service was fairly slow.  We were seated a few minutes before the one and only wait staff came out from the back.  He futzed around behind the register for a couple more minutes before he came to bring menus and take the drink order.  One downside to this waiter:  He had cologne you could smell from a mile away – so strong that even Ginny, who does not usually comment on such things, said something about it.  It wasn’t a horrible scent, but I stand by what I said last week, to wit:  your personal scent choices should be between you and your lover – nobody else needs to be able to smell it.

After perusing the menu, we decided to get two apps and a small entree.  We ordered the stuffed grape leaves with tzatziki sauce (although they don’t call it that; it’s the same thing), Baba Ghanouj with pita points, and the dish for which the place is named, Koshary, with a skewer each of lamb and beef.

The Baba Ghanouj was outstanding, with just a slight bitterness, and what I think was smoked paprika.  The pita points were, ahem, “on point” – soft, and hot.  This was my favorite thing on the table.

The stuffed grape leaves are the best I have ever eaten.  I’m not usually a fan, because they’re usually (a) sour, and (b) cold, and (c) dry.  These were none of the above.  They WERE, of course, a little tangy, because pickled grape leaves.  They were served warm, and they weren’t just white rice inside.  There was rice and some other ingredients I can’t identify, and they were absolutely delicious.

Disappointment arrived with the Koshary and kebabs.  In the picture above left, the top skewer is the lamb, and the bottom skewer is the beef filet.  The waiter didn’t indicate which was which, and I had to smell them to figure it out, because Ginny does not eat lamb.  The meat was grilled, but not seasoned AT ALL.  Not even a marinade.  I had a bite of the beef as well as my lamb, and frankly, I couldn’t tell the difference in taste between them.  The lamb was not of a tender cut, either.  As much as I love lamb, I only managed to eat (most of) one of the chunks, because of all the connective tissue involved.  Yech.

Underneath the kebabs in the picture is the Koshary, and thank GOD we just ordered the small portion, because it was NOT good.  This is a mixture of lentils, rice, chickpeas, and for some weird reason, elbow macaroni, covered with what appeared to be crushed tomatoes straight from a can, and topped with crispy fried onion ribbons – basically, a big bowl o’ carbs.  I could not detect any salt at all, and the tomatoes were very acidic.  As you can see from the picture on the right, it looked like a dog’s breakfast.  (Maggie would not have objected, I promise you!)

I would go back for the apps, but would definitely get some other entree.  As always, your mileage may vary, so try it out, if only for the apps.



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