Mamounia – a tag team review.

This past Friday, Cat Nilan and Colleen Mathis had dinner together at Mamounia. Of course they had to write about it…


CNilan: My experience of Moroccan food is shaped largely by having lived in Paris for extended periods of time as a student and eating in couscous restaurants because they offered cheap, tasty food. I remember with particular fondness La Pastilla, a small Moroccan bistro in the shadow of the Tour Montparnasse, with large etched brass tables and fragrant mint tea. When I think of North African food, I think of their huge trays of couscous and delicious vegetable stew.

CMathis: Unlike Cat, my experience with any exotic cuisine is limited, though I have a penchant for the Mediterranean/North African style – especially when you can eat the entire meal with your hands. It can be just as strange (and just as challenging) as eating with chopsticks, but I enjoy the liberating feeling of immersion into another culture. I’ve been to Mamounia once before, and was immediately taken with the ambience and style, and I happily surrendered to it once again, excited to go with a new group of friends.

CNilan: Because I love North African food, I really want to like Mamounia — so far as I know, they’re the only couscous joint in town. Unfortunately I just don’t find the food there all that inspiring. This is the second time I’ve eaten there, and both times I’ve been left with the feeling that Mamounia is much more about the overall experience than the cuisine.

Not that I should complain all that much, since Mamounia is quite vegetarian friendly. I made a small effort to talk to our waitress about what was in the food, but things were busy and chaotic so I just ordered and hoped for the best. I’m fairly certain that the soup, salad, and entr

3 Comments so far

  1. Amanda (unregistered) on October 10th, 2005 @ 10:14 am

    Cat, I agree with your sentiments regarding the lack of flair in the vegetarian dishes at Mamounia. I have also experienced the price fixe menu at Kasbah (Crown Hill) and Marrakesh (Belltown) and found the latter to be leaps and bounds above the other two, where taste is concerned. I would definitely recommend it for a next stop on your search for good Morrocan food in Seattle.

  2. Anna L (unregistered) on October 19th, 2005 @ 9:09 pm

    I had recently dinner at Kasbah, I was curious after I read USA today Article.( I went to both Mamounia and Marrakech)I saw the difference just by stepping in, the food was fantastically authentic(I love Ethnic restaurants!)I thought it will be nice to share my fun experience with all the readers.

  3. Sandy Young (unregistered) on October 24th, 2005 @ 8:19 pm

    Wow, maybe CNILAN should consider going to Mamounia and ask the management to change their menu the way she thinks it should be.(serve salad in a bowl instead of a plate, import pigeons from overseas for bastilla since it’s not available in the US for non vegans of course, serve lentils and eggplant with couscous instead of rice and a tomato based soup shouldn’t have tomato paste). Maybe she lived a couple of months in France but I lived 8 years in Casablanca, Morocco and I know about Moroccan food and Mamounia has the best food and the best belly dancers in Town.

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