This is a story of second chances. And of yummy Indian food.
After a long, cold winter of no Indian restaurants in Dakar, not just one but TWO such restos opened over in the Ngor area. The first, Annapurna Indian, was welcomed with open arms and people left with full bellies and great reports. When the second one, the Maharaja opened, the reviews were a bit more mixed. However, I observed that my friends who had actually lived in India much preferred the Maharaja. So my friends and I decided to give it a try a while back.
First impression: there was no doubt that the atmosphere at the Maharaja was much nicer and more enjoyable. The food came and we were a bit less impressed than what we’d experienced and drooled over at Annapurna. But it was still pretty good for the most part and had it been the only Indian restaurant in Dakar, I would have been quite happy with it. But the customer service was just not good. (And those that read this blog regularly know that I don’t say negative things often!) But really – it was quite unpleasant and I walked out thinking, “Well, I guess Annapurna is the one for me!”
But then the Maharaja management asked me to come review their restaurant. I explained that I’d actually been before, etc… but that I’d be happy to give it a second chance.
Sometimes I do really smart things. 🙂
On my second visit, I became a fan. (And just for info, they did not know it was me so I was not treated or served any differently.) The service was still not stellar, but it was much better and they were attentive. One notable different this time was that we were asked if we wanted the food ‘spicy’ or not. Choose spicy, y’all. It was so, so good. Maybe that’s what was lacking in some of the dishes we tried on our first visit? In any case, we loved the food on our second visit and it was ‘spicy-ed’ just right.
I spoke with the manager on the way out and asked him to thank the owner for encouraging me to give the Maharaja a second chance. If any of you are in the same boat, I’d encourage you to do the same. Just be sure to ask for it ‘spicy’!
The Maharaja is located in Ngor Virage, between the airport and the ocean. They serve lunch and dinner and have a large and varied Sunday lunch buffet for 9000cfa.
Tel: 33 860 6163