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Published May 17th 2017
warm and inviting, well worth a second visit
What a marvellous difference a day makes! After receiving an invitation and attending Inside Morocco's tapas evening on Friday 12th May, I was left with not much to write a fair review in all honesty. However, please read on and I'll reveal the best café I've been to for a while.
My guest and I arrived at the beginning of the tapas event at 6pm and found the small café already brimming with groups of people, (many of whom I later found out were uninvited), tucking into the four plates of tapas on offer throughout the café.
What was meant to be a well-deserved celebration of the opening of the café, albeit some 10 months earlier, had been slightly highjacked by folks lured with the promise of free food, wine and an alluring belly dancer to the point where it was a crushing, standing room only, overcrowded event. What an unfortunate occurrence. No chance of a food sampling there, no chance of a decent photo or a real glimpse of the interior, no chance of a fair review.
As an event manager, I could see that there seemed to be a greater potential there than was on offer that night, so in deference to my husband who was a chef for 20 something years, and to every long-suffering kitchen hand who has ever had to endure the tirades of knife-wielding chefs after a bad review, I knew I had to go back to see if this was the authentic Inside Morocco experience.
Thankfully, I returned the following day at lunchtime, to be greeted by the enticing aroma I thought I would find the night before. Aromatic notes from savoury food being prepared by Chef Med invited me into the store wanting to explore further. The tables and décor had been returned to their rightful place, the café seemed open and airy and so delightfully warm and cosy. The décor was reflective of the vibrantly coloured Moroccan pottery, leather footstools, rugs, decorative plates and jewellery showcased for sale within the café. The appealing meals on display were a refreshing indication that the previous night was not all there was to this little shop, or the Inside Morocco experience.
A Moroccan experience worth a second visit
Chef Med greeted me and I was offered a coffee as though I were a guest in his home, not just a customer. His charismatic personality, no doubt a winning combination with good food in the cooking classes he offers in the café, left me with no doubt about his passion for creating satisfying meals and genuine hospitality. This was what had been missing the night before: the relaxed and friendly atmosphere, the elegant Moroccan pieces set thoughtfully on display and aroma of exotic spices.
Inside Morocco is a unique venue set amongst the three others trending in close proximity. Exquisite Moroccan items are available for hire if you are looking for that wow factor to add a touch of whimsy at your next personal or corporate event. The catering packages are reasonably priced with a decent selection of dishes that define Morocco.
If you want an evening stop over then perhaps an exclusive tapas night with a group of friends might be the ideal for you. However, if you want an authentic Inside Morocco experience that you'll bring friends and family to time and again, make the opportunity to park in the back streets and venture to Inside Morocco at 149 Magill Road, Stepney where sumptuous meals are available until 4pm, Tuesday to Friday and until 6pm on weekends. I'm really glad I went back.