Mamboz Dar es Salaam

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Following on from part 1 (see here) of my BBQ battle in Dar es Salaam, here is the next heavyweight contender!

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| Mamboz Corner BBQ |

Mamboz is located on a busy junction in downtown Dar, it can be found on the corner of Morogoro Road and Libya Street where it unapologetically sprawls onto the pavement.

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If you are pernickety about your plates, then this place is not for you. If you don't like mingling with the locals and prefer  your dining to include table clothes, candles and a waiter dressed like a penguin, then just stay away.

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However, if you want to make like a Tanzanian for an evening, this is your place. Everyone in Dar knows Mamboz. It is a lively place, a clear favourite with locals and visitors alike. Mamboz serves up cheap, plentiful, tasty food and bags of atmosphere.

Their Lemon with ginger BBQ chicken is so good! Their ajam, extra fresh and filling and their paneer tandoori has a good kick.

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There is more to Mamboz than its food. It is an experience that you won't forget. Cars will rush past you as you eat, locals will stroll past or dine along beside you. Masai will cycle past and wave, kids may shout their greetings. The smoke from the grills will fill the air, so will the laughter and the jokes and the sounds of Swahili. Mamboz has a good vibe and is a good place to sit and soak in some real night time Dar es Salaam atmosphere.

If you are shy, Mamboz also does takeaway.

Note: Mamboz like Barbecue House does not serve alcohol, not that you need it. You can get drunk on the vibe here. 

LINKS | Mamboz Corner BBQ Facebook Page |

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Peculiar Parties Pt I

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I love to read curious and peculiar tales and particularly enjoy it when an author pens a raucous memorably marvellous party.

Having gatecrashed through the pages of a fair few,I thought it would be fun to put together a blog post of a few  favourite literary parties that I have encountered during my adventures through my bookshelves. 

>>Satan's Rout from the Master and Margarita.

With the devil himself as a host, this was always going to be a wondrous soiree rich with extraordinary imagery.  The guests are an abominable hot list of hell's A-listers. Johann Strauss II conducts a 150 piece orchestra. Guests arrive as corpses that plummet down chimneys with their dismembered appendages into a grand fireplace before being magically restored to their ghastly former selves. Margarita is naked but for shoes made of woven rose petals and a diamond crown and a necklace with a pendant of a black poodle. There are fountains gushing with champagne. Innumerable couples dance on a glass floor whilst live butterflies flutter overhead and flowers drift down from the ceiling. The pillars are crowned with myriads of glow-worms and will-o'-the-whisps waltz in the air.

>>Lady Mandible's Ball from the Eyeball Collector my F E Higgins.

Though this tale is regarded as a children's book, the ball itself holds one of the most shocking and appalling images of a party outfit that I have come across in a literary party yet. I am of the opinion that there is "eccentric good" and "eccentric quite evil", and Lady Mandible with her twisted tastes and manipulative ways, falls all too comfortably into the latter category. Her party outfit includes a cloak, a live cloak of terrible and cruel beauty. A cloak that shimmers with the frantic beating wings of a hundreds of dying rare butterflies that she had pinned into place. Did that send a a shiver up your spine too?

>>Trimalchio's Feast from the Satyricon by Petronius.

This party displays gluttony at its most grotesquely lavish. Trimalcio's dinner party menu included such "delicacies" as a sterile sow's womb, scorpion fish, eyefish, sow bellies, roast whole wild boar with dates, suckled by piglets made of cakes stuffed with live thrushes. Not to mention the boiled whole pig stuffed with sausage and black pudding. I think I will give dinner a miss thank you.

Do you have a favourite literary party? What do you think I should include in Peculiar Parties Pt II?
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J. Glinert

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I have mentioned my weak spot for well curated shops before. Those little lesser-known shops with well considered everyday and not so everyday items and I count myself as most fortunate to have such a delightful place a mere hop, skip and tiny jump away from us. 

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J. Glinert can be found in Wilton Way where they sell a real eclectic mix of things. Their fine selection includes a fine array of stationery, a unbeatable selection of books about Hackney and a wonderfully curious stock of household goods. 

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I don't believe there are many places on the planet where you can find a Boatswains pipe, extra large Nigerian wooden cooking spoon alongside Swedish hand forged nails.....That is precisely why I like this shop so much!

LINKS | J. Glinert |

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A Pot of Pleasure

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Envy is never a good thing to admit to nor fall pray to. Yet that is exactly how I would feel when I would see pots of delectable looking fruit enshrouded pots of frozen yoghurt pop up on my Twitter and Instagram timelines over the years. Pinkberry seemed like a distant dream for my tummy.

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Imagine my delight when Pinkberry finally touched down on our shores, and better than that, set up store in  Westfield Stratford City. I finally got to try my 1st pot of Pinkberry recently and just looking at it made me smile!

Pinkberry frozen yoghurt takes its inspiration from European gelatarias. They offer distinctive flavours that are both refreshing and curiously light that will compliment their daily selection of fresh hand cut fruit and dry toppings.

The staff at Pinkberry in Westfield Stratford City are a lovely bunch who will talk you through the choices available and, much to my delight, happy to offer tasters of their yoghurts too! 

Having slurped my way through a few tasters, I settled for a cookies and cream frozen yoghurt surrounded with raspberries, strawberries and chopped almonds. So good! So good in fact that I fear that I will be unable to ever set foot in Westfield without finding myself queuing up for another pot of Pinkberry's pleasure.

LINKS | Pinkberry |Westfield Stratford City |

**DISCLAIMER: This post was created in collaboration with Westfield but all opinions are my own 
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Super Skin

I do not take much pleasure from forking out large sums on skincare especially when I have no idea if a particular lotion or potion will actually work. 

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Staring at Things : Saatchi Gallery

The Saatchi gallery is a good place to wander in the inspiration of others. 

I like visiting galleries to read stories and look at people pondering paintings. I like hearing snippets of their thoughts too.

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A beautiful building containing galleries filled with conceptual modern works that will provoke, reassure or repulse. The Saatchi Gallery's current exhibition, Body Language,  seeks to "explore the physical body and present a variety of reflections on the human form”.

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Event Two by Helen Verhoeven

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The Feast by Eddie Martinez
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Gray Town by Makiko Kudo

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That's That by Michael Cline

The Saatchi Gallery offers a different gallery experience for Londoners what like to stare at paintings. The gallery does without rope barriers so you can take a good look at brush strokes and other such fine details without being told off. Photography is permitted (no flash or tripods) so there is a real feel of freedom in your wanderings.

LINKS | Saatchi Gallery | 

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What is the English word for  a "calabash"? "Gourd" maybe? The Japanese word is "hyoutan".

Anyway, Hiro bought a new shirt in the Present January sale. I like it when he buys new shirts because I can wear them too.

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This Japanese pattern inspired shirt is made by William Fox & Sons who are probably better known for  their rucksacks.  The shirt is 100% cotton, cut to a classic fit and has pearl buttons and a single chest pocket. It also has a locker loop on the back yoke which I think is an unusual detail.

I am waiting for Hiro to wear it a few more times before I jack it for an outfit post! 

LINKS | William Fox & Sons | Present | 
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Jozi Time

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A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of spending 24 hours in Johannesburg. Though most of my time was taken up with meetings, I did manage to spend a little money and time wandering around the area by my hotel.

I was based in Rosebank,which is a commercial and residential suburb in northwest Jozi. The area is so easy to get to from Oliver Tambo airport via the Gautrain.

Rosebank offers much in the way of shopping, cafés and restaurants most of which are based in small malls. As for me, my 1st destination every time I visit South Africa is the local Pick n' Pay to find and haul rooibos tea! 

Though my trip was but a quick one, it felt good to touch down in Jozi. It is a city that I want to see and feel more of one day. Till that day, here is my mini photo diary of my walk around Rosebank:

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The little woven bowl in the second to last photo is a gift from a friend that I do not see very often but who remains so dear to me. She always makes time for me when I am in town and we don't have to speak often to know that we are always there for each other. 

“Good friends are like stars.... You don't always see them, but you know they are always there”

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The Comb Worth Taking Home

When my hair was much shorter, I started to like combs. Now my hair has grown and grown, I still like combs because they are just so practical for my lifestyle.

They are easy to travel with. Great for styling my hair. Easier to keep clean, fab in the shower and great for combing conditioner through my hair.

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Of all the combs that have come and gone through my hair I must say that the Kent Handmade Sawcut OT comb is my favourite. 

Kent Handmade combs are made of cellulose acetate (a plant derived plastic) that is said to create less static  in hair. Kent combs are saw cut, hand polished and then buffed to form smooth rounded teeth that will slip through hair and be kind to your scalp too.

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Established in 1777 by William Kent, Kent Brushes is one of the oldest established companies in Great Britain. Renowned for fine quality and a long heritage of excellence (which pleases my penchant for all things with a long tradition) these really are great combs that last and last. 

I think I will buy another soon...a larger one to cope with my longer hair!

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Nice People Only!

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I like hosting giveaways. I get a lot of things that I do not always have room for and instead of trying to shift them for a penny or two, I thought I would offer them up for the grabbing to WorshipBlues followers on a dedicated giveaway page!

There are currently 2 giveaways running and plenty more to come so keep a steady eye on the prizes and lets's have us some fun!

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Barbecue House Dar es Salaam

There are a lot of culinary adventures to be had in Dar es Salaam and a good way to get your chompers stuck in is by trying some local BBQ. Charcoal grilled meat is big in Dar es Salaam, and there are 2 big contenders for the title of King of the Grill. We felt that we had to try both while we were in town!

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| Barbecue House |

First up was Barbecue House. Barbecue House is located in the quieter and more residential Upanga district on Nkomo Street where it seems to take up the veranda and side street of someone's home. 

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In Tanzania BBQ chicken resembles and is similar to  tandoori chicken. It is well seasoned and spicy but unlike tandoori chicken it is cooked on a charcoal grill rather than in an oven.

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Barbecue House's chicken was good but the star of their show was their amazing coconut chutney.

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Until that balmy evening in December, I had never tried a coconut chutney and I am quite fearful of trying another for it may never be as good as this. Spicy, tangy and great with salad and ajam.

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If you are wondering what ajam is, it is a common bread served in BBQ houses of Dar and is somewhere between and naan and an east African chapati. Very nice and very filling and also super cheap!

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Barbecue House's  fish was a bit of a disappointment for us. It was too spicy, so much so that it hurt to eat it (yes we are chilli wimps) but more to the point it was so heavily spiced so we could not taste the fish at all! Of course this could just be down to our Japanese palates.

Barbecue House is great if you want to chill out and relax and enjoy some great TZ BBQ. The service is attentive and efficient, the place is clean and well managed. The staff are friendly and helpful and the grill is in the open air so you get to watch your food cooking. Barbecue House is a bit out of the way so the best way to visit it to get a taxi.

In terms of cost, the food here is not expensive in western terms but we have a habit of thinking in Shillings when in TZ so this is at the pricier end of the BBQ spectrum. At the time we visited, a portion of chicken came to about £2.00 (and you get 2 pieces).

Note: Barbecue House does not serve alcohol.

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Somehow Lifted Spirits in Details

It is raining cats and dogs here in London and as I write this the wind is thrashing away at my window. Somehow this takes my mind back to another rainy day.......
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Once upon a rainy day we took a long stroll through Nara. Through town, park and primeval forest we walked. Past curious deer, lichen covered stone lanterns and soaked tourists. Till, eventually we reached the famous Kasuga Taisha

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Kasuga Taisha is situated in the east section of Nara Park. It takes about 30 minutes to walk here from Kintetsu Nara train station and the walk is wonderful and full of delights along the way.  It will take you through the Kasugayama forest which alongside the shrine is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The forest is home to 175 kinds of trees and it feels sacred somehow. Perhaps this is because it retains the look and feel of Old Japan.

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Kasuga Taisha is famed for its lanterns. Hundreds of thousands of them have been donated by worshippers and now hang from the buildings in striking formation.

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It was such a wet day. The rain fell relentlessly yet somehow our spirits were not dampened. The contrasting bright red against the dull skies was mesmerising and beautiful. 

If you would like to read more about the history of Kasugai Taisha, please take a look here : WIKIPEDIA

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