Equal Partners
by Roland Ezri

Equal Partners by Roland Ezri

Equal Partners

By Roland Ezri

"Women are the backbone of all societies. They do a substantial part of the work, and play a major role in raising the future generation yet they are largely powerless. The decisions that count are made by men and foisted upon women."

Writings by Roland Ezri

The Second Exodus – Egypt – C. My Years at 12A Rue Khantaret Ghamra – Entertainment (26 of 30)


Alexandria was a cut above Cairo. It was a sophisticated and cosmopolitan city with a large European population. Alexandria was given many other names, for example, “La Seconde Capitale” (The Second Capital) and “The Pearl of the Mediterranean.” But of more immediate relevance, was the fact that there weren’t many other places on the planet where you could indulge your sweet tooth as in Alexandria. A long stay there meant the addition of a few pounds; however, if you were a permanent resident, you never shed those extra pounds!


Delices not only exists today, but it is thriving. It was established in 1922 by Cleovolous Moustakas in a store in Ramleh station. The family has obviously weathered the storms that have abated on Egypt since the 1952 revolution. Delices is today managed by the fourth generation of the Moustakas family.

This is a diverse operation featuring over 40 different types of pastries, dozens of distinct types of baked goods, and over 12 various types of confectioneries. Quality is the watchword, and only the best and freshest ingredients are used.

The Delices Group includes Delices Cafe, Delices Patisserie, and La Veranda.

Delices Cafe and Patisserie are located at 46 Saad Zaghloul street. In addition to the Delices specialties, it serves breakfast and lunch.

La Veranda is a restaurant that offers mouth-watering French and Greek food. On their website (and they have an elaborate one; it is cited in my Sources at the end of my Entertainment Part) they recommend Yuvetsi Pasta, Youverlakia Meatballs, and Steak Frites.

Some interesting tidbits: During WWII, the Allied forces frequented Delices. Delices was chosen as the private caterer to the royal house. Birthdays and diplomatic events were often left in the care of Delices.

When I was in Alexandria, I remember eating with delight its superb sweets. Even today, when I indulge in a piece of pastry, I subconsciously make a comparison with the Delices pastries; it’s unfair, of course, for the Delices treats have no parallel.


Pastroudis was established in 1920 by Khawaga Pastroudis, a Greek (most pastry shops were founded by Greeks). His son Atanach Pastroudis carried on in 1927. Atanach married a Swiss woman, and together they ran a first-class restaurant. King Farouk is said to have dined there; and Om Kalsoum went to Pastroudis when she came to sing in Alexandria once a year. Finally, when Edith Piaf graced the city with her presence, one of the establishments she frequented was Pastroudis.

Alexandria in the 1920s was a city where women rode the streetcar in evening dress! One of the establishments the cream of society favored was Pastroudis.

Atanach and his wife started with a restaurant and a bar, but soon added a bakery which became very popular.

The major changes that affected Egypt after 1956 had an impact on Pastroudis.

In 1961, Atanach passed away. His wife carried on until 1972, but eventually running the business by herself proved to be too onerous for her, and she decided to return with her only daughter to Switzerland.

She sold it to Fayed Kasabgy, an accountant. She also stayed with him for a year and half to teach him the ins and outs of her complex enterprise.

Today, Pastroudis has two locations: At the International Gardens, and downtown. The downtown location is no longer what it used to be. Kasabgy is hoping that a big-name such as a Marriott hotel can be talked into taking over this branch.

I don’t remember ever going to Pastroudis, but I probably consumed some of his baked goods.

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