Friday, June 2, 2017

Schiller's Favorite Wine Bars in Dakar, Senegal, West Africa

Pictures: At Africa Gourmet, Dakar, Senegal, the Best Wine Store in Dakar, with General Manager Martine FAYE and Store Manager Yacine

Although Islam is the predominant religion in the country, practiced by 95% of the country's population, with the remainder being mostly Roman Catholics, there is no shortage of wine in Dakar.

While there are no proper wine bars in Dakar, there are quite a number of restaurants/ brasseries/ bistros which also innclude a wine bar, including in several brasseries and the top hotels in Dakar.

I spent a week in Dakar, Senegal, West Africa in May 2017, with my wife Annette Schiller. We visited our daughter Cornelia and her family, with husband Chris, daughter Viatrix and son Ernst, and stayed at their villa.

Pictures: Dakar, Senegal, West Africa

During my 30 years career at the IMF, I visited Senegal several times. I got first in contact with Dakar in 1983/84, when I was the fiscal economist in the IMF team that handled the adjustment program with Liberia, which is also in West Africa. Following the Liberia assignment, I moved to the Côte d'Ivoire team and visited many times Abidjan, the capital of Côte d'Ivoire. At that time Abidjan was the leading city in West Africa, ahead of Dakar. But things have changed. Abidjan has fallen back although it is revovering under President Ouattara.Dakar can look back to a long period of political stability while Abidjan has suffered severely from the civil war that brought the country down.

This posting is part of a series of 4 postings:

Wining, Dining and Chilling in Dakar, Senegal, West Africa
Schiller's Favorite Restaurants in Dakar, Senegal, West Africa
Schiller's Favorite Wine Bars in Dakar, Senegal, West Africa
Wine Producer and Wine Consumer Senegal, West Africa

The Cuisine of Senegal, West Africa

The cuisine of Senegal is a West African cuisine influenced by North African, French, and Portuguese cuisine and derives from the nation's many ethnic groups, the largest being the Wolof. Islam, which first penetrated the region in the 11th century, also plays a role in the cuisine. Senegal was a colony of France until 1960. Because Senegal borders the Atlantic Ocean, fish is very important in Senegalese cooking. Chicken, lamb, peas, eggs, and beef are also used, but pork is not due to the nation’s largely Muslim population. Peanuts, the primary crop of Senegal, as well as couscous, white rice, sweet potatoes, lentils, black-eyed peas and various vegetables, are also incorporated into many recipes. Meats and vegetables are typically stewed or marinated in herbs and spices, and then poured over rice or couscous, or eaten with bread.

Dakar, Senegal, West Africa

Kate Thomas: With its hot sandy streets, whitewashed mosques and bright flashes of color, Dakar beats to a different drum than other West African capitals. Spread out over a rocky peninsula, the year-round breeze carries the complex sound of mbalax music and the smell of piping hot thieboudjenne, the national dish. As sunset falls, thousands of Dakarois head to the beaches for open-air workout sessions, while in the bustling Medina area, women fry fish and plantains by the roadside. Fishermen haul in their catch in the shadow of sleek shopping malls, while men dressed in silky boubous stop for prayers and hawkers sell peanuts and wood carvings on every corner. Dakar is a city of contrasts, of gentle breezes and loud chatter, of colonial architecture and construction sites.

Wine Stores in Dakar

You can buy wine everywhere, ranging from small shops to supermarkets. The best wine store in Dakar is Africa-Gourmet in Ngor. L'Epiciere in the Plateau District also has a very good wine selection.

Picture: Neighborhood Store

Picture: Supermarket

Pictures: At Africa Gourmet, Dakar, Senegal, with General Manager Martine FAYE and Store Manager Yacine

Schiller's Favorite Wine Bars in Dakar, Senegal, West Africa

Here is the list of my favorite wine bars in Dakar, in alphabetical order. It includes wine bars I have visited and wine bars I want to visit next time I am in Dakar. It also includes restaurants with a strong wine component. The comments include recommendations of Africa Gourmet, the best wine store in Dakar, and Bassirou Sarr, a Senegalese and old friend of mine.

Bayékou
Ngor Beach

This open air restaurant and bar is one of Dakar’s newest hip hangouts. Bayékou is laid out to accommodate those wanting some relaxed drinks by the round bar or lounge seating area, or those who want to sit at a table and eat. From both sections you can enjoy the stunning view over Ngor Beach below, and nearby Ngor Island. Food at Bayékou is mostly Mediterranean influenced.

Picture: Bayékou

Bazoff Pub Restaurant
Sicap Rue 10 Plateau

Recommended by Africa Gourmet for its wines. Traditional French brasserie with a large bar area.

Café de Rome
30, Bd de la République, Plateau

A 3 star hotel with Brasserie (including a nice bar area) and Casino. Bassirou Sarr: I also like the restaurant Café de Rome in downtown Dakar.

Picture: Café de Rome

La Maison de Céline
Almadies Zone 7

Africa Gourmet recommendation for its wine list. La Maison de Céline est un restaurant niché en plein coeur des Almadies, ce restaurant vous proposera une cuisine internationale tout en vous accueillant autour de sa piscine et son jardin aménagés. Le restaurant est connu pour ses pizzas faites au feu de bois, ses viandes importées et ses spécialités Corses.

La Fourchette
Rue Parent 4, Dakar, Plateau

Fine dining restaurant without a bar area, but with a strong wine menu. theculturetrip.com: La Fourchette prides itself on upholding the rich cultural history of Dakar. Dining in this elegant establishment, you would be forgiven for thinking that you had been transported to a restaurant on Paris’s Left Bank. The menu is sophisticated and European, with a twist of Asian fusion and is a nod to Senegal’s colonial past, whilst the live music and entertainment offer a welcome reminder that you are in the heart of West Africa.

Le Bideew
Plateau

Loneley Planet: Le Bideew is a vibrant oasis and a welcome respite from the hustle and bustle of the old town’s crowded, dusty streets. Nestled in the garden of the Institut Français Léopold Sédar Senghor, with views of a big canopy tree in which colourful lizards are always busily doing push-ups, the restaurant offers both Senegalese and French-influenced food. The menu ranges from grilled fish to chicken burgers, or tempura veggies with guacamole. Come after enjoying a movie in the centre’s cinema or on a Friday or Saturday evening, when there is often a concert.

Pictures: At Le Bideew

Le Kermel
Plateau

A typical French brasserie which is open from 7:00 am to midnight and which has a large bar area. Google: Si un bon plat typiquement français vous manque, RDV dans ce bar/restau où l'on retrouve l'ambiance d'un bon bistrot.

Le Little Buddha
Sea Plaza

In walking distance from Cornelia's villa. Belongs to the Radisson Blue Hotel. From Japanese Sushi to traditional Chinese fair, this Asian-fusion restaurant combines the flavors of the Pacific Rim into a single, delicious menu. Motivated by Asia’s bustling night life, Little Buddha Dakar also features a lounge bar, where a professional DJ plays dance music until dawn.


Pictures: At the Le Little Buddha

L’Epicerie
7 Bis Rue Victor Hugo, Plateau

We went there for the wine, but wine is only one part of L’Epicerie. nouvellesdedakar: Entre épicerie fine, restaurant, bar à vin et salon de thé, cet endroit plein de charme situé au coeur de la ville saura satisfaire les plaisirs de chacun. Le bar à vin du jeudi et vendredi soir propose, sur le rooftop de l’établissement, d’arroser le tout d’un choix de vin (Français et Italien) finement sélectionnés par les patrons qui feront profiter de leurs conseils avisés.

Pictures: At Le Le Bar à Vin Dakar/  L’Epicerie

L'Ortelan
223, Rue de Kaolack, Dakar

Tiny wine bar area. Africa Gourmet recommendation for its wine list. Google: Petit bar restau tenu par Jojo proposant des plats plutôt français dans une ambiance bistro. Close to Cornelia and Chris' villa. The bar area is very small. Very French says Cornelia.Opens at 8 pm.

Le Viking
21 Ave Pompidou Plateau

Beer-scented pub. An institution. Live bands play downstairs on weekends.

Picture: Le Viking

Phare des Mamelles

Lonely Planet: On the hilltop in front of Dakar's iconic lighthouse, this open-air bar draws a dance-loving crowd on Friday nights, when it hosts live music jams. Very limited wine by the glass selection. Breathtaking view and atmosphere. We had a bottle of Cotes due Rhone for CFAF 15.000.

Pictures: At Phare des Mamelles

Pullmann Taranga Hotel Bar
Plateau

Was the place to stay and eat when I used to work on West Africa between 1980 and 2000. This time while we were there it was undergoing a major renovation. The hotel and the restaurants/ bars are open during renovation. The bar is very much New York style with a good selection of wines, including by the glass.

Pictures: Pullmann Taranga Hotel Bar

Radisson Blu Pool Bar

Loneley Planet: Part of the Radisson Blu Hotel (radissonblu.com), this poolside restaurant and bar offers views of the ocean, live music at night and a decent choice of international food: pizzas, salads, hamburgers, as well as a variety of seafood dishes and an extensive list of wines. The cozy sofas on the edge of the pool are great for a pre- or post-meal glass of wine. In the evening, marvel at the bluest shades of the pool stretched out above the ocean, amidst a dance of lights.

Pictures: At Radisson Blu Hotel Wine Bar

Schiller’s Favorites

Here is a complete list of Schiller's Favorites:

Europe

Germany

Schiller’s Favorite Wine Taverns in Würzburg, Franken, Germany
Schiller’s Favorites: 2 Legendary Wine Taverns in Würzburg – Juliusspital and Bürgerspital
Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars and Wine Taverns in Freiburg, Baden, Germany
Schiller's Favorites: Frankfurt Apple Wine Taverns that Make their own Apple Wine
Schiller's Favorite Winemakers in Sachsen (Saxony), Germany
Schiller’s Favorite Winemakers in the Saale-Unstrut Region, Germany
Schiller’s Favorite Wine Taverns in Trier, Germany
Schiller's Favorite (Wine-) Restaurants in Deidesheim in the Pfalz, Germany
Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars in Frankfurt am Main, Germany
Schiller's Favorite Wine Bars in Berlin, Germany
Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars in Frankfurt am Main, 2013, Germany
Schiller's Favorite Apple Wine Taverns in Frankfurt am Main, Germany
Schiller’s Favorite Wine Taverns in Mainz, Germany

France

Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars in St. Emilion, France - An Update
Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars in Bordeaux City - An Update
Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars and other Wine Venues in Chablis, France
Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars in Beaune, Bourgogne
Dinner at a Bouchon - Chez Paul - in Lyon: Schiller’s Favorite Bouchons in Lyon, France
Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars in Beaune, Bourgogne, France (2015)
Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars in Bordeaux City, France (2015)
Schiller’s Favorite Restaurants, Brasseries, Bistros, Cafes and Wine Bars in Paris, France
Schiller's Favorite Seafood Places in Bordeaux City, France
Schiller's Favorite Wine Bars in Bordeaux City, France, 2014
Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars in St. Emilion, France
Schiller’s Favorite Restaurants, Brasseries, Bistros, Cafes and Wine Bars in Paris, 2012 France
Schiller's Favorite Wine Bars in Bordeaux (City) (2012), France

UK, Spain, Austria, Hungary

Schiller's Favorite Winebars in London, UK
Schiller’s Favorite Tapas Bars in Logroño in La Rioja, Spain
Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars in London, 2012, UK
Schiller's Favorite Wine Bars and Other Wine Spots in Vienna, Austria
Schiller's Favorite Wine Bars in Budapest, Hungary
Schiller’s Favorite Spots to Drink Wine in Vienna, Austria (2011)

USA

Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars in New York City, USA
Schiller's Favorite Oyster Bars and Seafood Places in Seattle, Washington State, USA - An Update
Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars in Seattle, USA - An Update
Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars in Charleston, South Carolina, USA
Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars in Austin, Texas, USA
Riesling Crawl in New York City – Or, Where to Buy German Wine in Manhattan: Schiller's Favorite Wine Stores, USA
Schiller's Favorite Oyster Bars and Seafood Places in Seattle, USA (2013)
Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars in New York City, USA (2013)
Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars in Seattle, USA (2013)
Schiller's Favorite Wine Bars in Washington DC, USA
Schiller’s Favorite Crab Houses in the Washington DC Region, USA
Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars in New York City, 2012, USA
Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars in Charleston, South Carolina, USA (2013)
Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars in San Francisco, USA
Schiller's Favorite Wine Bars and Other Places Where You Can Have a Glass of Wine in Healdsburg, California

Asia

Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars in Singapore
Schiller s Favorite Winebars in Beijing, 2014, China

Africa

Schiller's Favorite Wines of Madagascar
Schiller’s 12 Favorite Restaurants of Antananarivo, the Capital of Madagascar

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