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Sunday, 29 April 2012

La Maison Rouge in Mougins: The Complete Package.

I have been very fortunate to have been able to travel to Marrakech twice and both times I have enjoyed the hospitality, the divine food and the mystical splendours of Morocco.
Now I no longer have to dream the impossible dream, I can eat the most mouth watering Saffron Couscous, tajines and pastillas right here in Mougins.

Zohra and her ever smiling husband Hassan have finally made it happen, they have opened La Maison Rouge in Mougins, a casba of infinite pleasure when it comes to the stomach, the heart and the soul.
This lovely red house in a quiet part of Mougins is not only a restaurant and what a fine restaurant it is but also a lounge bar and a traditional Moroccan Hamman. Have I got your attention now?

*courtesy of their website*

Let’s talk food first: home cooked by Hassan himself using fresh produce and vegetables I did not know existed let alone tasted. There are no entrees...the entrees are brought to the table in little shot glasses: tuna in a harissa sauce with capers, baby artichokes marinated in olive oil and lemon,a mini cucumber and tomato salad with fresh coriander so delicious I had to mop up my plate with the sesame and olive bread.

The main meal you pick yourself: the men went for the" Saffron Couscous": a dish fit for our kings. Heaps of golden couscous, lamb, 2 lamb kefte, a brochette of beef and 9 different sorts of fresh vegetables...go ahead count them.

I went for the Lamb and Fig Tajine: need I say that the figs were fresh and the dish divine. Even when I was full and could eat no more..I kept at it.

Janet went for the Gambas Tajine in a fresh tomato sauce....erm,I'll just let the pictures do the talking:

It is hearty and tasty food...the kind your mom would make if she was Moroccan....
The plates are full of goodness that will fill your belly and make you purr with pleasure and once the fresh mint tea has been poured and Zohra has placed a selection of sticky pastries in the middle for all to share...does your purring reach an almighty crescendo and you need a lie down.

The ambience is low key yet enough to transport you.The music isn’t your typical Arabic selection that you now here everywhere including your local supermarket.They were playing a soft jazz combo,music that Woody Allen would use in his movies and it accompanied our meal in perfect harmony.

Now to the newly opened Hamman: you needn’t bring a thing; it is all there for your pleasure. A locker room is at your disposal, thick towels, bathrobes and disposable knickers and slippers. All you have to do is walk in to the thick welcoming heat of the hamman,choose and slab and lie down.A scrub with “savon noir” and massage is available as well as a walk in shower you could fit a football team in. Did I say that you will feel like you are in the heart of Morocco? Well you will feel like you are anywhere but here and that is part of the journey: to escape your day, your routine and surroundings.

Once you have been rubbed, scrubbed and massaged, you are invited to relax in their “Salon de relaxation” where you can drink your fresh mint tea to your heart’s content and close your eyes some more.

Are you there yet?

Open from Tuesday to Sunday
To book Hamman experience or restaurant call:04 93 75 67 28 or 06 45 36 89 11

There are several offers  including the "Formule Repas III" which consists of: use of the hammam,bath towels/bathrobes,disposable panties and slippers, "savon noir" scrub,access to relaxation room with mint tea and couscous or a tajine....80€
If you add a half hour massage to that: 120€

Oh and tell them Reem sent you....Enjoy.