Wednesday, 17 December 2008

Festive interlude

Heading back to Europe for a couple of weeks over Christmas. There are loads of reviews to write up, so will post more in the new year.

In the meantime, why not entertain yourself with my friend's blog: How di bohdi? It offers some tasty slices of life in West Africa.

Also - people are really talking up a new Sushi place in Plateau called 'Fuji' on Rue Victor Hugo. I'll be down to check it out in the new year, but I've heard very good things so far.

Merry Christmas folks.

Saturday, 6 December 2008

Restaurant News

New Openings:

Le Seven, Rue Mohammed V x Felix Faure
Re-opened by the people who used to own La Fiesta, this place has been given a welcome transformation - gone are the red walls, badly dressed 'socialites' doing cocaine in the toilets, and high volume cheap techno soundtrack. Instead the new look Seven is a bit more grown up, a bit more sophisticated and altogether brighter. Judging by the welcome and service at last night's soft opening this may become a Plateau hotspot for all the right reasons. Lunchtime menu focuses on creative salads, while the evening menu keeps to straightforward French cooking (Menu Degustation 18,000 CFA). I'll be stopping by for dinner in the New Year.

I-Cone, Route de Ngor, Almadies
New fancy Cafe recently opened on route de Ngor. Expect an updated version of the classic Dakar patisserie. With the new Casino supermarket up the road I expect they'll do well from passing trade.

Restaurant News

Thursday, 4 December 2008

Sea Views

As you'd expect, there are many restaurant in Dakar with sea views. Here are a handful for breezy Sunday afternoons.

Le Dionevar, Pointe des Almadies
Perhaps cheese and onion crisps are considered to be a sophisticated amuse in France. I somehow doubt it. This place is trying hard to be an upmarket French-style joint, but is outclassed by the cheap as chips seafood offerings across the car park.

  • Service was fine
  • Nice christmas decorations
  • The oysters. You know when something doesn't smell quite right... but its too late because you've just knocked it back...
  • Cheese and onion crisps on a dining table. *Shakes head*.
Le N'gor, Almadies, by the sea
Another breezy beachside venue which is very popular on Sundays. The restaurant has bags of character, but service is slow, and the food is ony worthwhile if you've spent the afternoon getting drunk here.

  • Meet of with some friends and soak up the seaside vibes.
  • Drinking all of your wine while waiting for service.
Hotel Sokhamon, Bd Roosevelt x Av Nelson Mandela (website)
A boutique hotel with an unusual cave-like restaurant cut into the cliffs. The awkwardly sloping decking at the edge of the cliff is a fine place to spend an evening supping a drink and watching the sun set / planes fly over. The upmarket restaurant tries hard, with some poncey experimentation that doesn't really work out.

  • For drinks on the deck before moving on elsewhere
  • For formal dining if you stay away from the wackier items
  • It's pricey
  • Service is a bit fussy, and slow
Lagon I, Rue de la Petite Corniche
Some sort of ridiculous nautical / sport fishing themed restaurant. Does that float your boat? Then you are as vulgar as this restaurant. Overpriced grub for French tourists who have been allowed out of the Club Med prison walls for a couple of hours. On the plus side I saw a very nice dog in the restaurant, sitting calmly at the feet of an elderly lady.

  • You actually laugh for the first few minutes, particularly at the faux crocodile pit. Then you remember that you have to eat there, and consider throwing yourself in.
  • Just avoid
Le Relais Sportif, Route Corniche Ouest
If you enjoy eating in the dark, come here in the evening. If you'd prefer to see what you are eating come in the day. Actually, don't bother eating. If you can catch the attention of a waiter (perhaps try setting fire to something), have some beers and enjoy the breeze off the sea.

  • For afternoon beers.
  • Coming after dark
  • Eating
More sea view tips from Almadies coming soon.


Other Restaurant News:
The Christmas decorations are up at Les Ambassades bakery in Point E. I shall be keeping my eye out for some of the more vulgar festive decor around town. Any tip-offs most appreciated.

Many thanks to L'Institut Francais (the CCF) for letting us use their grounds for our informal Petanque championship a couple of weeks ago. The staff there were superb and did us a great favour.

Look out for a detailed review of 'Le Lodge' on Experimental Jifflings at the end of next week.

Bon appetit