- Abou El Sid (Off 26th of July St., Zamalek, Cairo; tel. 02/27359640): Reservations are required at this upscale eatery, and when you get to the table, traditional Egyptian cuisine never tasted so good. Get down to the classics in an intimate atmosphere decorated with icons of Egyptian culture from the golden days of music and film.
- Bab Inshal (Midan el Souq, Siwa; tel. 046/4601499): This place is about atmosphere as much as the food. The rooftop restaurant at the Bab Inshal is backed into the ruins of the ancient city of Shali in the center of the oasis. The menu of Siwan dishes was developed by a French chef and is at once bold and satisfyingly simple. This restaurant serves the best Egyptian breakfast in the country.
- Fish Market (El Geish Road, Alexandria; tel. 03/4805114): Down-market atmosphere and upmarket food make this the best place to settle into a traditional Alexandrian meal of shrimp and grilled fish. Head down here around sunset to take advantage of the best harbor view in town.
- La Scala (Abu Tig Marina, Gouna; tel. 065/3541145): Look in the window, and you're going to see a basic diner with a long open kitchen and simple decor. Get down to business with the food, though, and you're going to have the best steak and grilled vegetables on the Red Sea coast.
- Mogul Room (Pyramids Road, Giza, Cairo; tel. 02/33773222): It's a long drive from Downtown Cairo, but the Mogul Room would be worth it even if it was another hour. The food is the best Indian meal in town, and the location -- the lush, 19th-century Mena House Oberoi and the pyramids -- adds additional spice to the meal.
- Moudira Hotel Dining Room (West Bank, Luxor; tel. 095/2551440): Classically elegant tables amidst the garden of Al Moudira's central courtyard makes for one of the loveliest and most sophisticated restaurant settings in Egypt, and the food lives up to the architectural billing.
- Tandoori (Naama Bay, King of Bahrain Street, Dahab; tel. 069/3600700): From the street, the only indication that this place even exists is the scent of spices that wafts through the doors of the Camel Hotel. Inside you'll find the best north Indian cuisine on the coast at a price that won't make a dent in your wallet.
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