Of all the ethnic restaurant that are readily available in the D.C. area I haven’t really had the opportunity to come across one dedicated to Kenyan food until now. Swahili Village offered just that. When I stepped in I wont lie, I was taken aback normally African restaurants in this area have a mom and pop feel but this space was extremely contemporary.
The concept was open and the lights dim. African music could be heard playing through out the restaurant. And a large bar dominating the space in the back. Once seated the wait staff immediately came to take my order and offered insight to items on the menu. I was a part of a group so the combinations of food were endless.
There was the chapati, a flatbread that is common to Kenya and many other nations in that region. Then the Pilau, a seasoned Basmati rice that was someone claimed was similar to West African Jollof Rice (it wasn’t. 😦 nothing is ever close). Then the Nyama Choma, or grilled cubed Beef Steak and the Fried Tilapia. Some folks ordered onions and collard greens aka Sukuma Wiki; Pan fried cabbage and onions, Kabeji; Sauteed spinach and onionsh onions, and the Kachumbari, a tomato salad with onions, cilantro, andhabanero tossed in lemon juice.
Honestly the menu had so many great things to try and I plan to visit again in the near future. So if you are ever in the Washington D.C. area make sure to stop by the Swahili Village.