Friday, February 17, 2012

Silver Spring Now Moroccan Restaurant-Free

Happy trails (or should I say مع السلامة?) to Marrakesh, the Moroccan restaurant which opened less than a year ago in the wake of the closing of Shitty Place’s Taste of Morocco.

I had been hearing rumblings for some time that it might be closing, but never had any confirmation. To make matters even more confusing, there seems to be two separate websites for the restaurant, one which uses the old Taste of Morroco URL and another at The former has a message that reads "We are still open in Silver Spring, any note you find online that we are moving soon, is just a scam from unknown people" at the top of the main page, while the latter's front page reads "THANKS FOR YOUR SUPPORT IN SILVER SPRING WE LOOK FORWARD TO SERVING YOU IN BETHESDA".


Regardless of these conflicting messages, it would indeed appear as if they are closing, as purchasers of a Groupon offer at the restaurant received an email yesterday informing them that Marrakesh's last day of operations would be February 29th. Why they are closing in Silver Spring or where they are moving in Bethesda, I don't know.

I  never dined there myself, though not because I don't like Moroccan food. I admire their attempt to offer a 'traditional' seven-course Moroccan dinner, but the fact that was the only option turned me off. I can't always eat that much.  Of course, maybe Marrakesh did eventually add à la carte options, or so says the menus available on one of the websites.  I can't keep track. (Also, I always feel awkward when a meal is "ponctuated" by belly dancers at my table.)

I'm not even sure what the name of the restaurant is - "Marrakesh" or "Moroccan Bites"? Not that it matters now.

Thanks to everyone who forwarded me the Groupon email.


Anonymous said...

"I admire their attempt to offer a 'traditional' seven-course Moroccan dinner, but the fact that was the only option turned me off."

Ditto. Wish them the best, but seriously hope they rethink the idea. It's not surprising that few people were attracted to the idea and that won't change no matter where in the region they're located.

Anonymous said...

I wanted to eat there, but didn't want a giant meal, either. They should have offered smaller options and put a menu in the window, something that can really make or break my decision to try a place.

WoodsideWoman said...

"I admire their attempt to offer a 'traditional' seven-course Moroccan dinner, but the fact that was the only option turned me off."

To be fair, the Marrakesh in DC, on New York Ave, has been doing this quite successfully for years - billing itself as a special occasion/group celebration type place, the way restaurants that only offer prix fixe menus do. Although it's become passe, perhaps, when I first moved to the area 16+ years ago, Marrakesh of DC (no idea if it's related to this place) was often recommended as a "must eat" sort of place.

Jill said...

Yep--the big dinner is great for a destination restaurant with a big group, but something more drop-in, neighborhood-friendly would do better in that location.

I really liked the food at the old place, but I could never bring myself to brave the belly dancers at my table. I just didn't know where to look! And I saw people try to put money in the waistband of the dancers' skirts, which made me even more uncomfortable. Not to mention the deafening Euro-disco music, which made conversation impossible.

So no way was I coughing up for the seven-course dinner if I was getting the belly-dancing, too. On a stage, fine; at my table, ICK. It's all just too "From Russia with Love". I kept expecting Sean Connery to appear and precipitate a catfight.

Anonymous said...

Stupid idea is stupid.

oh and obligatory SILVER SPRING RETAIL FAIL.

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