"My family in Dallas has two Moroccan restaurants, Kasbah Grill and Tangiers, which have been open for eight years," says Outmane Yanouri, owner of the new Casablanca Couscous & Grill (5506 Richmond, 832-754-8749). "I always had a dream to have a restaurant, and I'm lucky to have in the kitchen my business partner, Jamah, whom I knew from Dallas and who knows the Moroccan food and the spices," he says.
Before opening the restaurant, Yanouri was in the furniture business, importing Moroccan furniture and fixtures, and the one thing that strikes you as you enter the small place is how well decorated it is. You definitely have the feeling of being in a small place in the souk.
The menu at Casablanca is short and sweet. There are basically two kinds of traditional dishes, couscous and tagines, and they come in a variety of flavors. Dish sampled one of each. The Royal Couscous came with three kebabs — one grilled lamb, one chicken and one kefta, or beef with seasonings. The accompanying sauce contained carrots, potatoes and zucchini, but there weren't any sides and it was somewhat odd to be eating only meat. The lamb tagine featured a large lamb shank covered with caramelized onions and prunes, which added sweetness to the dish.
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