The pleasantest shortcut to learning about a culture is through its cuisine. And there's no better place in Aswan to begin your education that in this upmarket eatery floored in green marble and flooded with welcome air-conditioning. The menu offers staples like grilled meats accompanied by vegetable dishes—this is one of the few places that serves loubia (black-eyed peas)—salads, bread, and tahini. But go deeper. Order the stuffed pigeon (or a small stuffed
chicken if pigeon's not available): If it's stuffed with rice, it's being served Nubian-style; Egyptian-style stuffing is made with fereek (cracked wheat). Don't be afraid to order whatever you see on someone else's table—chances are that your neighbors are Egyptian and will welcome your curiosity. There's no outdoor seating area, however.
Shar‘a Abtal el-Tahrir, Aswan, Egypt