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angeli caffe for dinner // ngoma on wilshire has brunch!

jenn | Mar 31, 200301:00 PM

It was a weekend of missing stuff and making up for it by eating.

On Friday, we missed Chowpup's last dance class so we consoled him with a visit to Angeli Caffe on Melrose and a big plate of excellent fried calamari and some italian "dumplings" aka ravioli [stuffed with greens and covered with sage butter and a walnut cream sauce]. He said he felt better.

Alas, Sunday afternoon we goofed again and arrived at the soccer field [in Santa Monica] at the appointed hour only to find that because of the ungodly heat, soccer had been moved to the morning. Chowpup did not look amused.

We drove home via Wilshire Blvd and decided to just "look at the menu" for Ngoma--a place we've been meaning to try. Turned out they now have a Sunday brunch special. Chowpup advised us that he was sooooo hungry and conceded that dinner in another restaurant might make him feel better so we headed in.

Entrees at brunch run from $9 to $11 and include one mimosa. For small people they were happy to give us orange juice in a champagne glass. For the three of us, we ordered way too much food but everything sounded so good, we couldn't help it. After we ordered our main courses, we saw that there was fried yucca on the menu so we had to try that as well. The yucca was good but they served it with ranch dressing which just didn't do anything for us. Next time, I would ask for some of the sauce that accompanies the grilled goat to go with the yucca.

Chowpup wanted chicken so we ordered him the "yard bird," which turned out to be chicken with eggplant and other stuff in a delish sauce served on rice and piece of chapati bread. There was some sort of cucumber pickle on top which he graciously shared with us. He liked it alot but was careful to get his share of his parent's food.

I had the grilled goat which came with a choice of greens [spinach, collards or mustard] and a choice of chapati or something that begins with a "u" but is made from white cornmeal--you use it to scoop up sauces. I couldn't quite figure out how to use it with the goat but it was great to steal bites of the pup's food. The goat was incrediably delicious--very tender, very goaty---yum! The sauces which went with the goat were also very good. Caution: the green one that looks like it involves avocado doesn't and its quite hot.

Husband ordered the Lamb mafe which was big hunks of lamb in a peanut based sauce with vegetables that included yucca. The cornmeal stuff on my plate was great with that tool.

Everyone shared everything and Chowpup had seconds on the collard greens and took all the tomatoes and onions from his parents' plates, but somehow more of the yard bird was left than anything else. So we had it packed for everyone to share later. Chowpup cheerly announced that the yard bird was all his since we had eatten all our food and had nothing to bring home---he's pretty darn tricky for a five year old. He later relented in exchange for one of the mints that came with the bill.

We will definitely go back again. Only caution is that service might be considered slow by some. We found it relaxing.

Link: http://www.ngomarestaurant.com/pages/...

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