Opening Hours 8:00 a.m.-11:00 p.m., Sat-Wed 8:00 a.m. till midnight, Thurs 4:00 p.m. till midnight, FridayCall Now
Team Y gets cracking at a new eatery in Ghubra that aims to bring a versatile breakfast staple out of its shell.
It’s hard to mess up breakfast. The most important meal of the day is also one of the most pleasantly casual as we sip our morning cuppa solo, brushing the toast crumbs off our sleeves before heading out the door to work. On weekends, we linger over our plates, laughing with friends over a full-English fry-up. However we prefer to take it, without a doubt those who join us for a morning meal are our most treasured company – as we choose to start our day with them.
Breakfast is also one of the most versatile meals of the day – an all-round crowd-pleaser whether you’re a no-frills, milk-and-cereal type of foodie, an avocado toast millennial, or a breakfast-for-dinner iconoclast. But if there’s one breakfast staple that defines the genre it’s the ever-so-humble egg. Poached, fried, scrambled or boiled, there’s not a form they don’t fit into, deliciously.
Given their versatility and diverse usage across myriad global breakfast cuisines, it is with hungry bellies and the sun rising in our bleary non-caffeinated eyes that we head to Ghubra’s newest foodie find – The Eggspress Café. At the risk of stating the obvious – their speciality is as their name suggests.
In fact, greeting us on the terrace of this small eatery is a larger-than-life carton of eggs installation bearing the brand’s moniker. Clever, if a little kitsch. On entering, we quickly realise it’s more of a diner. A small interior reveals three dine-in tables and a cafeteria-style open-kitchen setup with black, white and yellow décor that takes the egg theme, well, rather seriously.
As we’re seated our waitress brings us a vast menu to peruse – offering up a plethora of eggy options plus some all-round fare for those that find yolks yucky (it’s probably not the place for you if that’s you).
For us? We’re here, we’re hungry and we’re ready to order up a full dozen. We start with a rich-sounding Turkish breakfast staple, ‘Cilber’ – poached eggs on a bed of labneh (a soft Arabic cheese) with chilli garlic butter served with garlic bread. Talk about the ultimate comfort food – all three of us can’t get enough of this creamy, tangy dish. The aroma of the garlic blends nicely with the slightly curd-like flavour of the labneh while the runny yolks and spicy chilli oil add their own unique depths to the dish.
However, the garlic bread that’s mentioned on the menu is nowhere to be found. Instead, a dry basket of plain white toast is brought to the table. When we ask our waitress for several portions of pitta or kubus instead to mop up the sauce, she seems a bit put-out that we’re requesting something other than what’s advertised. Well, fair enough, but we are not getting what’s advertised either.
Second to arrive is a hot skillet containing a fluffy-warm Chef’s Omelette of the Day – a rich chicken, mushroom, and spinach creation (minus the chicken for our vegetarian companion). It’s an ideal combo of crispy edges, fluffy centre, and well-balanced spices. The side salad it comes with seems a bit lacklustre, however, and a distinctively odd pairing with an omelette. A side of hash browns however, would have gone down a treat.
We also share a portion of Eggspress Café’s signature Rajas Spicy Masala Fried Eggs off their Exotic Skillet’s menu. What arrives is, in fact, not in a skillet but rather on a plate, slipping and sliding closer to the edge with every movement. A spicy fry-up of green and red chillies, onions and tomatoes topped with two eggs, sunny-side-up; it’s the dish off their menu that has drawn us to the café in the first place.
It’s also an ‘egg-streme’ disappointment as the dish is so saturated with grease and oil that the eggs are practically swimming in it. It is also so over-the-top, five-alarm spicy that any delicate nuances and depth of flavour from the masala blend are completely overpowered.
Ditto for the Eggs Benedict with spinach that follows, as the thick, gloopy Hollandaise makes the buns a soggy mess.
Breaking away from the egg overload we finish up with a portion of their Simply-A-Shrimpy Dynamite. A baffling name of a dish, it’s actually battered shrimp tossed in their dynamite sauce (a type of chilli-mayo). Drowning in red goop, the dish comes served in a cocktail glass atop a bed of wilted Romaine lettuce. After the second shrimp we bite into turns out to be half-raw we push it aside and call for the bill.
A strong start leads to a waffling finish at this eggy eatery that’s not all it’s cracked up to be.
Ghubra, behind Aster, Al Raffah Hospital
8:00 a.m.-11:00 p.m., Sat-Wed
8:00 a.m. till midnight, Thurs
4:00 p.m. till midnight, Friday
Contact: (+968) 7901-6745
Breakfast for three: RO11.6
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