Is this newly-revamped spot a trip to Morocco we’d take again?
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Time Out Says

The answer is yes. Yes it is. Tangia used to be dark, dreary and ever so slightly depressing. Now, it’s a curtained, lamp-lit wonderland. A wonderland that smells incredibly nice. It’s almost like we’re not in the middle of the Wyndham Grand Regency, a hotel known for its tasty food and questionable restaurant décor (as in, why is the lighting so harsh and the carpet so grey?). It’s, dare we say it, a pretty restaurant with pretty food to match.

Okay well maybe not pretty. Moroccan food is basically brown, so it’s not going to win any points for gorgeous food photography. But man, is it tasty! After we’re ensconced in our private booth lined with squashy cushions – I’m secretly plotting to stuff in my handbag as they’re very very comfortable. (Totally kidding. My bag is too small for those cushions) – we find out why the restaurant smells so fantastical. It’s actually Moroccan. The servers are Moroccan, a lot of the décor is from Morocco, and, best of all, the staff aren’t afraid to tell you what to order and why.

Sometimes, this doesn’t work out so well: our waiter recommends the chicken pastille, basically a puff pastry mountain stuffed with chicken that tastes like Christmas. Visions of cinnamon, nutmeg and poultry shall not be dancing in my head, thanks. But other times it works out and changes my world forever. Meet, their lentil soup. I want to marry this soup. I want to spend a lifetime with this soup, and one day when we grow old and grey, I’ll hold its soup spoon tenderly, whisper ‘I love you’, and we’ll die mere seconds apart. After which we will go to a heaven made of that soup and my mouth. It’s creamy, it’s thick, it’s decadent and it warms its way down my throat to set up camp in my belly and I never want it to leave. It’s food you want to hang onto for a long while. Lentil soup, I love you. Be mine forever.

But I can’t wax poetic about the soup all night (mostly because eventually I hit ceramic). One of the fun little quirks of the place is the little staging-area table next to ours. This is handy as most of the dishes come covered or with accoutrements and making space for them on our big table would mean giving up my soup before I’ve licked every drop from the bowl… and that is just not going to happen. Plus, we’ve crowded the table already with their awesome hot miniature loaves of bread and multiple beverages. Do not skip the green tea infused orange juice: it sounds weird, and it is. But it’s also one of the most refreshing things I’ve ever had in a glass.

Our mains make their way to the little table and then on to ours – I go for the meechoui, lamb with cous cous. It appears, a whole joint of lamb riding astride a steed of spiced cous cous. It’s so tender is basically falls off the bone. It laughs at my attempts to use a fork – no forks are needed. Spoons. Gentle thoughts. It’s that tender I’m about to get all there-is-no-spoon and bend it to my mouth with the power of my brain. While portions are a bit fatty, I put this down to the cooking process and plough my way forward into a glutton happy face of carbs and protein. Bah ram ewe, bah ram ewe, to your breed, your fleece, this lamb on my plate be true.

My friend gets something slightly less smear-on-my-face-and-roll-around-in-a-meat-coma: the salmon. It appears the salmon is getting a little fancy pants on us. It comes decked out for the prom, strips of fish rolled around a creamy filling, topped with a tomato-ish sauce. It’s different than what you’d expected: surprisingly, fish and tomatoes should meet more often. This is one prom date that will end well. The portions are massive and we’re doggy bagging half of it, but we still solider on. When you see something called ‘chocolate cous cous’ on the menu you just have to.

So let’s talk about grain-based desserts. These can go one of two ways: the way of rice pudding (happy face) or the way of tapioca (angry green barfing face). This one is heavily in the happy face camp. It comes to the table looking like a tiny mountain of brown sand. Cutting into it, we realise it’s actually a multi-layered extravaganza. The outside is like a chocolate rice pudding, creamy and sweet without being so sweet it makes your teeth ache, before giving way to a subtle creamy middle studded with chunks of fruit. It’s a dessert for even the non-dessert types. Weird but worth it.

I’m so, so glad this restaurant is now a pretty beacon of lamb smeared hope. Let’s hope this is a sign of the times, and soon the hotel’s other tasty dishes won’t be forced to slum it in bad décor drag.

The bill (for two)

1x Lentil soup QR39
1x Meechoui QR109
1x Chicken pastille QR49
2x Salmon QR119
2x Green tea orange juice QR50
2x Chocolate cous cous QR59
Total (including taxes) QR425

By Time Out Doha staff  | 31 Oct 2012

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