Friday, September 12, 2014

Spice Road Table at World Showcase - A Review

One of the highlights of the few short days that we spent at WDW was our first meal at the newly-opened Spice Road Table at the Morocco pavilion. We have heard and read about it, so we kinda knew what to to expect. Since we love Moroccan food and were frequent diners at Marrakesh restaurant, this was definitely a place that we wanted to try. And we weren't disappointed.

We walked in for lunch, and the place wasn't busy at all. We got a terrific table by the window, and I can only imagine the view we might get to see during Illuminations.

The food, if you don't know, is Mediterranean-inspired, and they are served tapas style, i.e. in small portions/small plates. It is meant to be shared and also allows you to sample a larger variety. A quick look at the menu offers a tantalizing sampler of various things that we wanted to try.

Both of us went for the Tingis sampler, and added an order of the Greek salad, and the calamari. The Greek salad was refreshing, with a very nice dressing that didn't overpower the fresh ingredients.

Calamari was excellent, and accompanied by a couple of nice and contrasting dipping sauces.

The star of the show, though, was the sampler, which consisted of the Harissa chicken roll, lamb slider, and lamb sausage.

I started off with the Harissa chicken roll, and immediately was blown away by it. It has such a strong, unique flavor, and the pastry was warm and crispy, just the way it should be. If you've had the "lumpia" egg roll (why would you unless you are familiar with Filipino food?), this is of the same texture. I could devour several of these in the blink of an eye. It was that good. I then proceeded to the lamb slider. Again, delicious and tasty. It has a "beefy" flavor that most beef hamburgers are sadly lacking. Lastly, I went to the lab sausage, usually called merguez, which I've had before in various tagine dishes. Nothing wrong here and it had the bite and flavor that it should.

Both of us polished these off in no time. By then, we were ready to order another plate, which is a common practice when you are having tapas, and they also left a menu at our table for doing just that. We order the grilled skewered beef and chicken.

We both started attacking it with gusto before I remembered that I needed to snap a photo. So what you see here is the half-eaten skewers. Again, no complaints here, but I think I prefer the items in the sampler plate.

This was a singular, best-tasting food that I could remember anywhere in World Showcase. The food was delicious and unique. The uniqueness is a strong quality, because I tend to want to find things that I can't get anywhere else. They didn't just stick to moroccan food, but sampled a larger region of the Mediterranean. In the process, they have a menu full of tasty interpretation of the region.

I highly recommend this restaurant, especially if you are willing to try new things. And my advice is to go soon! It is a sad fact that menu items and food quality changes at restaurants in WDW, most not for the better. Things get watered down, or "dumbed down" for the tourist palette, so unique and unusual items tend to get discarded. I am skeptical that this restaurant can maintain the strong and bold flavors for a long time, so go now before the muck it up!

The only drawback of this place is that, while they have iced mint tea, they do not have the regular hot moroccan mint tea, which they always have in Marrakesh restaurant. I like the hot mint tea even when it is hot outside. It really cools you down. But the iced mint tea that we had weren't bad either.

Final verdict: Highly Recommended.


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