Sunday, June 5, 2016

Another delightful African meal at Jambo

Last August, Bill and I visited Jambo African Restaurant in Ludwigsburg for the very first time.  The place was recommended by my Facebook friend, Jennifer, who raved about how good the food is.  We did indeed enjoy a great meal last year and I reviewed it on this blog.  Unfortunately, that particular post did not get much exposure because I wrote it during my infamous Facebook Stuttgart groups hiatus.  Since I really believe Jambo is a great place to try something different, I am going to write about it again.  This time, I hope I can give it more exposure.

Our visit to Jambo was brought on because I wanted to visit Heinrich's drink market to get rid of some empty bottles that had been taking up space in our pantry for months.  We usually visit Ludwigsburg early in the day, but because the weather was so yucky yesterday morning, we put off going until late afternoon.  That worked out great for us; on Saturdays, Jambo doesn't open until five o'clock.

Bill tried to use the online reservation application, but his query was never answered.  It was no big deal, though, because he called the restaurant after we finished our beer run and reserved a table that way.  Then we spent some time trying to find parking.  Ordinarily, there's plenty of street parking near the restaurant, but there was some kind of carnival going on in Ludwigsburg.  I actually felt like checking it out myself; it looked like a great opportunity to people watch.


On the way to Ludwigsburg, I had to take a photo of the beautiful valley.  The weather was so odd yesterday.  On Bill's side of the car, there were heavy, low hanging, dark grey clouds.

We arrived at the restaurant a bit early for our 6:30 reservation.  I could see that several tables were reserved, but quite a few weren't.  We would have been okay simply showing up last night.  As it was, there was only one other party when we arrived.  They were a group of Germans and they had a baby with them.


Bill strikes a pose in the doorway at Jambo.

We checked out the menu, still all in German like it was last time!  I wouldn't mention that the menu is entirely in German, except that there are a few items on the menu that might seem exotic to some American diners.  On occasion, Jambo serves springbok.  Both times we've visited, they've had ostrich.  If your German isn't up to snuff or you are concerned about trying something outside your comfort zone, you might want to check out the menu ahead of time.  The music was very festive and fun and the dining room smelled wonderful, like exotic spices and savory meats.  


Obligatory shot of Bill.  They have pretty embroidered tablecloths on the tables, covered in plastic. 

I really wanted to try something new last night, but ended up going with the Sierra Leone platter again.  It was a very good choice.  


The Sierra Leone platter is chicken served with a mildly spicy peanut sauce, spinach, plantains, vegetables, and rice.  This was really delicious, but quite rich.  I couldn't finish it.  


Once again, Bill went with ostrich (Strauß).  It's served with a spongy bread you tear off and use to pick up the meat and vegetables.  Last time we visited Jambo, Bill didn't get the concept.  The proprietor came out and explained it to him in German.  For the especially aware, there's also a pictorial at the front of the menu!

We enjoyed this meal over a bottle of South African Syrah, specifically Golden Kaan, which Bill tells me is available at the Real.  I think we may need to get some of that for our house.  It's a very nice South African table wine with bold spicy flavors.  I am partial to spicy reds.

I was going to try one of the African beers advertised on the table.  Last time we visited, I noticed them and wanted to give them a shot.  Unfortunately, they didn't have any available last night.  I got the sense that some items at Jambo are very hit or miss and may not be available frequently. 

I settled for a hefeweizen as I watched the restaurant start to fill up.  I noticed several parties ordering the platters offered at Jambo.  Basically, they're big family sized dishes meant for the whole table to share.  Maybe next time, Bill and I will go for that.

We finished up with a house shot.  Bill had grappa and I had a Williams pear digestive.  All told, the bill before the tip was under fifty euros.  Jambo is a kid friendly restaurant.  They have a children's menu and besides the baby who was doing a fair amount of shrieking, I noticed a family with several children enjoying a nice meal.  They also offer options for vegetarians.  The proprietor also told us that the small outdoor biergarten opens on Monday.  

Next time, I think I'll venture outside my comfort zone and try something different.  Maybe I'll even have ostrich.


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