Fine Dining at Al Fassia // Marrakech, Morocco
On our first night evening in Marrakech, a few weeks ago, we wanted to do something extra special, bucket-list, we’re-in-Marrakech, kind of special. In prepping for the trip, sorting through zillions of TripAdvisor reviews, CondeNast, New York Times Travel (you name it) for the best restaurant in Marrakech. The name I found was ‘Al Fassia’. A female run restaurant, famed for it’s exquisite local cuisine, located just outside of the Medina. I made reservations nearly a month in advance.
We arrived at 7PM, right on time for our reservation and just as Al Fassia was opening for dinner. Per the request (well, dream) of one of our travel buddies, we all wore (mainly) white, and quickly settled into a cozy booth. Following the recommendations noted in most of the reviews, we all to ordered tanjines, dishes which are cooked in pottery made up of two parts – the bottom plate with a short rim and a top cone-shaped lid. The tanjines are cooked over hot charcoal with the cone lid creating a crock-pot like affect, keeping the meal moist as it bakes. I choose the vegetarian tanjine (carrots, peas, potatoes) and Dan had lamb with prunes. After a brief wait, the tanjines were set down before us the lids slowly removed by the waitress, revealing our feast. I nearly devoured everything, tanjine base include. It was just seriously yummy. Ultimately, Al Fassia was a great experience, pleasant waitstaff, delicious food, classy interior, but was mayyyybe, just maybe, not worth the hype. Either way, it was a great start to our first night in Africa.
Following dinner at Al Fassia we headed back to the Medina (Marrakech old city center) and strolled through the night market. I should have been a bit more of shutter bug but I was enthralled by the sights around me. Marrakech is a world away from Heidelberg, DC, or anywhere else that I’ve visited. Music in the air, yummy smells from the market, and soo many interesting things for sale. The night market is an experience in itself.
Much more to come from our visit to Marrakech – a sunset camel ride, a night in the Sahara with Berber Nomads, a visit to Yves St Laurent’s famed ‘Marabelle Gardens’, stay tuned, friends!