The high point of our meal at this small, welcoming taginerie was the distance that the mint tea was skilfully poured from a silver pot into a pretty glass. There weren’t any particular lows, but neither were there any standout dishes. By the end of the evening, the small rear kitchen was deserted, leaving the patron on his own in the restaurant. Earlier, things had been more animated.
Proceedings started brightly enough with bread, pickled vegetables and grilled kidneys with a blob of mustard (not the advertised mustard sauce) and a colourful salad. B’stilla looked like a flat toastie: crisp, icing sugar-dusted pastry enclosed merely a smear of sweet chicken and almond filling. The list of tagines is long, but our choice of sweet-salty lamb with caramelised pear needed more ginger and cinnamon to give it an extra dimension.
Turkish delight (served with the mint tea) reinforced the overall impression that sugar is all very well, but a little more variety and spicing wouldn’t go amiss. The wine list includes expensive Chateau Musar from Lebanon, decent French reds and a Moroccan bottle. The beer may be Casablanca, but the atmosphere is nowhere near Rick’s Bar.