5-minute walk from Kannai Station. A Moroccan restaurant “MORROCA” with an orange Tajine (a type of earthen pot widely used in North African region）signboard is located on a narrow backstreet 2 blocks away from Yokohama Park.
When you go upstairs and open the door,
you’ll find an exotic space as if you were travelling Marrakesh, the city of Morocco.
Here in MOROCCA, you can enjoy real Moroccan dishes served by the Chef who worked for a local restaurant in Morocco for a long time. Various exotic foods, such as Tajine-steamed meat and fish, couscous (traditional food of North Africa), or Ramadan soup, are available.
They also have 9 vegetarian dishes (as of Dec. 2014), so you can enjoy compete set of dinner by ordering only vegitarian dishes, or have small vegetable plates as snacks for some drinks.
Interview with Chef Kowaki
TSV：What made you start serving vegetarian dishes?
Kowaki：When I worked in a farm in Okinawa Prefecture, I had one Spanish vegetarian friend. Because she was a vegan, “vegetarian menu” was familiar to me already and I have been interested in it. Here in Yokohama, there are many non-Japanese residents as well as travelers from overseas, and actually, we were sometimes asked for vegetarian menu from them. When we had such inquiries, we introduced Indian restaurant near ours, but we have been thinking to serve our own vegetarian foods. Then I came to know TSV’s activities. I thought “Time has come,” and decided to start vegetarian menu.
TSV：Wasn’t it difficult to make vegetarian dishes?
Kowaki：No. Originally there are many kinds of vegetable and bean dishes in Moroccan meals, so we didn’t need to create new dishes. Or rather, we thought we should introduce some traditional Moroccan foods in our menu.
TSV：Are there any extra efforts do you make to serve the vegetarian meals?
Kowaki：We take a long time to make vegetable bouillon so that we can add richer flavor to our vegetarian dishes.
TSV : What is your recommendation?
Chef’s recommendation: Vegetable Tajine
(Steamed vegetables cooked in a Moroccan traditional Tajine pot).
Seasonal vegetables steamed with the original bouillon and tomato sauce. Simple but rich taste.
TSV：Please let us know when your vegetarian menu is available (* as of Dec. 2014).
Kowaki：We do not serve veggie-lunch on weekdays since we have lots of non-veggie businessperson customers during lunchtime, though we want to start to serve vegetarian dishes in near future. During dinner time, when we have vegetarian menu inquiries, we ask our guests which foodstuffs they can eat and which they can’t. (From TSV: Their vegetarian menu contains non-vegan dishes. Please contact Chef Kowaki when you wish to have vegan foods.)
TSV : Please give your message to other restaurants thinking to serve vegetarian meals.
Kowaki：I believe veggie menu brings good and healthy life to people, so let’s start together!
MOROCCA’s Veggie Menu Gallery
Humus (Chickpea dip)
Traditional and typical bean cuisine eaten in Arabic countries including Morocco. Try it with Pita bread.
Falafel (Chickpea croquette)
Very popular in Morocco as well as Middle Eastern countries. With a delicate aroma of spice, you can taste natural sweetness of beans. Served with yogurt sauce.
A colorful salad (corianders in it) with cumin-flavored dressing.
Zaalouk (Eggplant & tomato dip)
Enjoy slight garlic aroma of this eggplant and tomato dip. The Melba toast (crunchy baguette) with this dip goes best with Moroccan wine.
Other Veggie Menu
Cooked with in-house bouillon. Couscous is a dish of tiny pasta. Very popular in North Africa and France.
Muslims have this famous, highly nourishing Moroccan soup while Ramadan (fasting).
A little sourness of tomato and mild spice with lentils, chickpeas and short pasta.
A paste of argan oil, crashed almonds and honey. Served with Khubz (Moroccan bread).
Khbuz (Moroccan Bread)
Pita bread (Arabian Bread)
It is full of variety; Moroccan beer, Moroccan wine, original cocktails (like “coriander mojito,” which tastes very Moroccan!), Japanese beer, wines from various countries and standard cocktails etc.
(This is the list served as of Dec. 2014. The menu may change from time to time)
The lineup of MOROCCA’s veggie menu is excellent. Though it is not veggie specialized restaurant, they can serve vegetarian dishes from appetizers to main course, made by a various cooking methods: raw, steam, fry or boil. Since several bean foods are also ready, vegetarians will be satisfied with the volume too.
The combination of foodstuff and the use of spice is superb. The mild spices bring out the natural taste and richness of vegetables and beans. MOROCCA is the restaurant of exotic cuisine, but it tastes somehow familiar to us…because what they serve here is the dishes of “tradition,” loved by many people for a long time. They serve good local foods with a variety of vegetarian food, which has become their unique characteristic.
Chef Kowaki said that they are going to apply for halal certification to meet inbounds’ inquiries.
MORROCA is very popular for its delicious and reasonable veggie, non-veggie menu and drinks. We suggest you to make a reservation in advance when you visit there.
Phone: (For reservation) 050-5868-0757
(For other inquiries) 045-664-3005
Address： 2F 2-52 Aioi-cho, Naka-ku, Yokohana-shi, Kanagawa Prefecture
Access： 5-minute walk from Kannai Station (JR Negish line, Yokohama Subway)
LUNCH [Mon-Fri] 11:30～14:00 (L.O 13:30)
DINNER/ BAR [Mon-Sat] 17:30～23:30 (L.O 23:00)
Non-Japanese customers: welcomed
English menu: Available
Vegetarian menu: Dinner/Bar time available (vegan, lacto-vegetarian, honey use menu are included)
If you are a vegan, please contact the restaurant in advance.