Sunday, February 14, 2016

Chez Dior: Still #1 for taste buds and tummy

Chez Dior Senegalese Restaurant

5124 Baltimore Avenue, Hyattsville Maryland 20781
Phone (240) 696-5907


Dined on February 13, 2016 (lunch)


Foreground: Thiebou Diene w/ red rice, tamarind sauce and pepper sauce.
Middle: Yassa onion sauce. Background: half of veggie nem.

I have been back to Chez Dior more than 10 times since my first review. Who would have thought perfection could have gotten better but it did. The food at Chez Dior is still lovingly and fastidiously prepared. The atmosphere is convivial, the service is that of being in a warm and welcoming family member's home. Mamadou the proprietor and host busily takes orders at tables and on the phone but always finds time to visit each guest table to see if you need anything and more importantly if you are enjoying your meal and time at Chez Dior.

Food

I had Thiebou Diene with red rice (photo above). Everything was tender. The fish was meaty and flaky and the vegetables married well with all seasonings and their flavors settling into the dish--cabbage was sweet, yucca earthy, and yam had a creamy texture. I did order vegetable nems but barely had a taste as my dining companion flipped for the flavor, crunch, and ease of eating and gobbled them up.

I have tried many foods at Chez Dior because 80% of the time I bring friends along to dine with me and we share our meals. The food is consistently delicious, fresh, and marvelous; and, always served in an appealing way. My favorite meal continues to the Thiebou Diene with red rice and I have to always start my dining experience with the veggie nems (Mmm, mmm). I also love the Attieke. The Yassa comes with a tangy, savory onion sauce that will send you to your knees. I often order that sauce to eat along with...well anything! When I eat at Chez Dior I usually cannot finish my entree, however, if I do finish I have no hunger the next 24 hours. Truly “stick to your ribs” food.

Dining

I absolutely love visiting Chez Dior. Yes, that is it--visiting. It is like visiting family or dear friends; not at all like “going out to eat” although eating is the impetus for getting me there. My meals and dining at Chez Dior are good for my well-being because I am relaxed, conversation is good with friends and spontaneous with Mamadou and sometimes other guests, too. A truly pleasurable visit.

Chez Dior is not a huge space. I'm guessing there are about 12-14 tables and booths that seat either 2-6 guests.

Expectations

How to best enjoy your time at Chez Dior: Be open and expand your culinary journey to not only trying African foods but embracing the African cultural dining habits infused into the experience.

Tip: If a dish's ingredient varies slightly, Mamadou will tell you. Fresh ingredients are used, daily prep is done of many dishes and thus an item may be used up. Food at Chez Dior is not mass production.

Tip: This is authentic African/Senegalese food. Freshly prepared. No rush, along with warm genuine service and care. If you have less than 2 hours to relax, enjoy, and strike up a conversation—try calling ahead to order or go to an American-style restaurant.

Tip: When you are done, if you want your bill immediately you will have to ask. Chez Dior (and typical of many area authentic African restaurants) does not rush you away from the table. Customarily you eat leisurely, and let your food settle over conversation. At Chez Dior, they do not rush their guests.

Tip: Saturday nights are busy. Weekdays lunch time is often busy. Dinner time any day can be busier with dine in guests and take-away orders.

Treat yourself to great food and socializing. Visit Chez Dior now and often.

Chow!
food chick

~~:~~
Eat, drink, be merry and validate for parking (TM)