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Tam Tam, Senegalese in Baltimore - Report

Steve Sep 11, 2011 08:12 AM

Four of us sat down for lunch on Saturday at 2pm in this Senegalese restaurant a few blocks south of the Senator Theatre and Belvedere Square on York Rd.

The problem was they stopped serving lunch by 2pm. Oh, they had food... but they switched over to their rather limited (flip side) dinner menu which consists of variations on grilled meats and fish. So while we figured out what stews we wanted, perhaps even the thiebou jen (the National Dish of Senegal), we couldn't order any of those. So no maffe or yassa or manioc leaves or the fish meatballs or....

The grilled items were good. We also had the mechoui (broiled leg of lamb) which wasn't. The side dishes were very good, including coucous, vermicelli, plaintains, and akiete which looks like a mound of short grain rice, but I was told is like cassava. All sides and sauces were delicious.

I would go back only under the condition of eating lunch at noon, or we were told you can order the lunch items for dinner if you call at least two hours in advance. I don't fully understand why the time-consuming dishes are available only at lunch and not dinner - I'd think it would be the other way around.

  1. l
    lawhound Sep 13, 2011 06:37 AM

    We ate dinner there a year or two ago, bringing with us my sister-inlaw who had lived several years in Senegal. I wanted to like it, but was decidedly underwhelmed, as was sister-in-law. As you note, the dinner options were slim, and the only specific thing I remember is that the lamb was tough, gristly and overcooked.

    1 Reply
    1. re: lawhound
      Steve Sep 13, 2011 08:10 AM

      We got two kind of grilled chicken, grilled fish, and the broiled lamb. The lamb was lame.

    2. KWagle Sep 11, 2011 11:44 PM

      How do you manage to FIND these places? And why don't you invite ME? =8-)

      If we can order in advance from the lunch menu , I could be talked into a late lunch there... in November. :-/ And I want to go back to Myanmar for lunch, and stay for dinner. :D

      1 Reply
      1. re: KWagle
        Steve Sep 12, 2011 07:46 AM

        Easier for me is Chez Aunty Libe in DC, which is similar and more user-friendly. A good array of Senegalese dishes.

        Chez Aunty Libe
        6115 Georgia Ave NW, Washington, DC 20011

      2. crowsonguy Sep 11, 2011 01:31 PM

        @Steve: so if the broiled leg of lamb wasn't, what was it?

        1 Reply
        1. re: crowsonguy
          Steve Sep 11, 2011 03:43 PM

          Wasn't good. Kind of dried out, underflavored. If I knew I was going before that morning, I might have posted something to Charm City Hounds, but we improvised on our plans for the day.

        2. baltoellen Sep 11, 2011 11:15 AM

          Thanks for posting; sounds interesting. I've not had much success with African restaurants in Baltimore, but I suppose if I work around the weird time parameters, my luck might change.

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