Tajine serves up traditional Moroccan cuisine at Robertson Quay

PHOTO: City Nomads

No doubt, Moroccan restaurants in Singapore are as scarce as hen’s teeth. And while a trip to Morocco sounds truly enticing, we couldn’t help but yearn for a more convenient way to indulge in our moreish couscous, shakshuka, and kefta delights.

Lucky for us, we don’t have to hop on a plane to Marrakech to get a taste of Morocco’s rich flavours anymore. Tajine, an authentic Moroccan tapas and cocktail bar had landed on our shores.

Perched on the Robertson Quay enclave, this new venture by Deliciae Hospitality Management aims to showcase Moroccan cuisine’s exquisite and authentic flavours with a contemporary twist.

If you’re not already sold from the bold and Instagramable interior, Executive Chef Remy Carmignani’s unique menu also draws cues from Mediterranean and African cultures, a nod to his time working at La Mamounia in Marrakech. Ready to dig into succulent meats, and meticulously handmade sharing dishes? Here’s our review of Tajine!

Kick off your appetite with Zitoun ($9++), a salty and tangy starter starring marinated olives, preserved lemons, as well as chili and garlic for that spicy kick. Next, no better way to get a taste of Moroccan flavours and hospitality than with the Mixed Platter of Moroccan Salad (choice of 3 at $36++, or 6 at $58++).

The platter features small bites like Zaalouk (grilled eggplant), Taktouka (roasted peppers), Chlada (chilled lentil salad), Khizou Mchermel (Carrot chermoula), Bessara (fava bean hummus), and Gar’a M’asla (roasted butternut pumpkin puree).

From the above, our favourites included the the creamy and addictive hummus, the babaganoush-like Zaalouk, the tangy yet earthy lentils and the sweet and floral roasted pumpkin puree, all best paired with the wood fired Pita ($8++ for 2pcs) or pillowy ball-shaped Batbout ($8++ for 5pcs).

Save room for the Briouates ($19++) and Tangia Marrakchia ($19++ for 3pcs) too. The former is a samosa-like treat, only instead of a potato filling, your tastebuds will be greeted with rich and intense flavours of wild-caught Atlantic sardines. The light and crispy bite is paired along with the Muhammara, a tangy and spicy red bell peppers dip.

The latter, on the other hand, features crispy slow-cooked lamb shoulder cromesquis with a nutty almond pistachio crust. They do run slightly dry and a bit chewy so we recommend dipping into the accompanying mint sauce.

A surprising discovery for us was Tajine’s  Spinach and Artichoke Pastillas ($58++). A mix between sweet baked goods and savoury filo puff pastries, this traditional Moroccan pie encases spinach, artichoke, whipped ricotta and chickpea.

The creation is tossed in the wood fired oven for the perfect bake. A sprinkle of powdered sugar and cinnamon completes the guilty pleasure. It does take the kitchen 25 Minutes to prepare the pastillas, so make sure to order in advance.

For mains, you can’t head down to the restaurant and not indulge in the staple Moroccan bite – Tajine. The aforementioned is named after the traditional cone-shaved clay pot used for slow-cooking. The Poulet Citron Tajine was indeed the highlight of the night with tender and succulent chicken, elevated with earthy cumin, turmeric and the mandatory green olives along with preserved lemon for a touch of tang.

To cleanse your palate, treat yourself to the refreshing lemon Sorbet ($16++), accompanied with almond syrup for nuttiness, orange blossom for sweetness, and garnished with house-made candied lemon. On the other hand we also enjoyed the Cornes De Gazelles ($16++ for 5pcs), a traditional crescent shaped pastry that reminded us of the Indian sweet, Kaju katli.

Tajine is located at 18 Mohamed Sultan Road Singapore 238967, p. +65 6690 7566. Open Tue–Thu 5pm-11pm, Fri 12pm-11pm, Sat 11am-11pm, Sun 11am-10pm. Closed on Mon.

ALSO READ: 5 things to eat and drink in Singapore this week, including wood-fired pizza at Osteria Mozza and sourdough ice cream at Phatbread Pop-Up Vol. 7

This article was first published in City Nomads.

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