|Bistilla -- A Moroccan dish I have wanted to try for a long time:
"Herb saffron chicken, orange blossom water, honey, almonds powdered sugar, and cinnamon."
|Chicken Tagine, one of three entrees that we ordered. We also tried sweet lamb tagine and a merguez (sausage) sandwich.|
|A shelf of tagines.|
Casablanca Restaurant is in a former Taco Bell location. Painted in grey and deep sky-blue, the Taco-Bell architecture doesn't seem in particularly unexpected for a Moroccan restaurant. There's a reason: the Mexican or Southwest US style adopted by Taco Bell has its origins in Spanish colonial architecture. Remember that in the Middle Ages Spain was occupied (or partly occupied) and governed by Arabs from North Africa, who influenced Spanish culture, language, and architecture. In 1492, the same year that they funded Columbus's voyage, the Spanish monarchs Ferdinand and Isabella succeeded in expelling the last of the "Moors," that is Arabs, from Spain. So the colonization of the Americas -- including the colonial architecture we now associate with the Southwest and Mexico -- immediately followed the era of Arab influence. Interesting.