Getting home late from work last Thursday I was in the mood to dine outside and relax. Having been intending to try Wazuri for some time and knowing they have a deck upstairs I figured this would be a nice choice. Arriving to Wazuri around 8:45 I was informed that their deck, as well as the few tables out front, were all occupied and there would be at least a 30 minute wait. A disappointment, but understandable with the nice evening so I chose to dine inside as I was famished. The decor is best described as "bright", a vivid pallete of reds, oranges, and yellows; it suited the African fare.
The good part: the food was excellent. I started with the Makossa, grilled shrimp over mesculin salad with avocado. The largeshrimp will grilled just enough to have a charred flavor but not dry and stringy. They were served with a spicy, chunky, curry sauce, which suited the grilled and mild taste of the shrimp well.
For an entree I had the Kilishi, roast lamb loin served with mushroom and eggplant roulade, fried plaintains, and coconut rice (the server suggested this as a substitution to the roast chayotte that it is noramally served with). The lamb was a perfect medium-rare and incredibly tender. The slightly sweet coconut rice was the perfect accompaniment to the lamb and mushrooms.
Sadly they were out of the fried plantain creme brulee with which I was utterly intrigued. So I left without dessert.
Now the bad part: the service was deplorable. They obviously only had 2 servers for the entire place, which meant I had to wait at least 15 minutes before anyone even came to take my order. After ordering it took about 40 minutes before my food came out and when it did, the first and main course arrived at the same time. I was starving so at that point did not care. After finally receiving my food my server did not so much as look in my direction for the rest of the meal and I had to hail him for water. Now the man was very nice and indeed gave me the good recomendation for the coconut rice; the problem was that they were clearly understaffed. While it is not expensive, for $17 an entree I would expect at least a little service.
Maybe from now on I will just get it to-go, or go when I am not hungry.
1836 18th St, NW