CHECK OTHER REVIEWS FOR THIS PLACE:
Al Mandaloun Beach Club: A Unique Experience by the Sea
Kahwet el Mandaloun: A New Favorite Place
I am back at Al Mandaloun Beach Club, less than a month since I was here before, to enjoy some of their tasty dishes again. But I doubt I will be coming back anytime soon if smoking inside is not forbidden. Surely you’re asking why make such a decision if I like the food here and appreciate and respect the attentive staff… Unfortunately the smell of smoke ruined everything for me. In a tiny place with six tables, 40 people filled the space... Six were smoking Shisha and eight others were continuously smoking cigarettes with no care... and the management didn't do anything about it!
For more details about the restaurant, read the first review. While I am trying to enjoy my dinner tonight... I shall write a checklist about every part of the experience.
- Still or sparkling water.
- Crunchy fresh salted almonds arrived first.
- Exceptional bread, so fluffy and airy, intensely oily and flavorful. Really amazing.
- Fresh carrots and cucumbers served on a wooden board.
- Waitress approaches for the order.
- ... and I continue to eat the bread until the basket is finished.
- Caesar salad is fresh: crunchy lettuce with grilled shrimps, large slices of Parmesan and crunchy croutons!
- Sea bass carpaccio: thick slices in lemon sauce served on a round plate and decorated with sliced green chili pepper.
- Fried shrimp pané, juicy with a crispy crust.
- Fried calamari with tartare sauce. Not crunchy enough and cheesier than I expected.
- Burrata with arugula, cherry tomatoes and slices of Parmesan. Loved the Parmesan but not the burrata; it's unfortunately tasteless.
- Lentil salad is a must try!
- Now for the main plates, I chose the lobster linguini, a plate for two. A big portion with a whole lobster, linguini cooked al dente in a tomato sauce, acidic and lightly spicy, an enjoyable and recommended plate.
- The risotto and penne which I couldn't manage contained an overdose of garlic and smelled very strong!
I'd change or improve:
- The cheap laminated paper used as a menu.
- Get one experienced person to handle the wine section. Our waiter was incompetent in opening the bottle, repeating its name and serving it.
- Remove the spoons and forks from all plates! They spoil the plate’s fine decoration. Add them after the client has looked at the plate and others have taken photos of the plates to share with friends on social media…
- Tables are too close to one another. It felt like we were dining in a bistro in Paris; I could repeat our neighbors' conversation completely.
- Expect to eat amazing food while the person sitting next to you smokes a cigarette and another the shisha. An hour after we started, everything smelled and tasted like grapes and apples. Unacceptable!
- Lobster Linguini - price depends on weight. Yeah sure, but can we at least have the price of a kilogram to have an idea. Expect to pay $45/person.
- Smoking is unacceptable! What a shame!
- Get rid of the music completely; all it does is add more noise to this small space.
A plate of fruits lands on the table and two cups of Merry Cream. Desserts here are breathtaking. We had the Mont Blanc, the superb work of an artist... a bed of crushed meringue, a mountain of chestnut ice cream intensely flavored with rum and a robe of whipped cream. It's so good... really, really good!
It makes me sad to see such a fine place lose its credibility so soon...
Great food... in a noisy, chaotic and smoky environment!