I have recently discovered Mamouche – the Moroccan restaurant in Amsterdam`s De Pijp – on Restaurant Week and, although I am not good at writing reviews, I`ll try to tell you about my experience with this place.
The description sounded promising (“Moroccan food culture in a contemporary and modern style”, “Moroccan, Tunisian and Algerian cuisine, characterized by its purity and simplicity, complimented with refinement and surprising combinations”, “organic seasonal and local produce”, “welcoming and caring in the details, as you would expect of a Moroccan mother” etc.) and the website seemed to give enough details – including the complete menu and wine list – yet it made me very curious about everything. Plus the place had ranked number 4 on a previous Restaurant Week, due to the very good reviews received.
Long story short, my first encounter with Mamouche was as surprising as the combination of ingredients the Moroccan cuisine is famous for. Everything was perfect: the romantic atmosphere created by candles and roses, the extremely polite and caring staff, the wine, the first dish… Even the restroom was great: candlelight, petals of roses everywhere, incensed sticks burning on a golden sink.
Just that, back at the table, the main course was missing. And that came as a bad surprise. We waited for no less than one hour to get it. Three waiters were definitely not enough on a Restaurant Week Saturday, when the place was completely full.
When the food finally arrived, I was almost wishing not to like it at all and forget about this restaurant forever! But that was actually never to happen: the main dish was indeed delicious. So delicious that Mamouche instantly became my number one restaurant in Amsterdam! We were offered an additional glass of the same wine we were drinking as an apology on behalf of the restaurant, although we were not the only ones waiting for so long that evening. We decided to give Mamouche a second chance, especially because we had to have that sort of delicious food again, soon.
The second time we brought even more people with us and everything went smoothly, no more waiting, same great food and kind service. And another rose offered together with the bill, at the end.
I have been warmly recommending Mamouche ever since and I`ll continue to do so. It really is one of the best restaurants in the city.