Beach Restaurant – A Journey to South Africa
By Bonnie Carroll
Mozambique, located at 1740 S. Coast Highway
in Laguna Beach, California, is a unique visit to experience
the taste of a rare spice called Peri Peri, and is also where
Master Chef Alfonso Contrisciani creates recipes indicative
of those prepared in a country located on the southeast coast
of Africa. The restaurant is the brain-child of two young men
who spent their youth on the coast of Africa, and are now sharing
their experience with local patrons and visitors to the beach
on Images for Captions
Contrisciani is the youngest man in the Unites States to achieve
the coveted rank of certified Master Chef and is being credited
for spearheading a new culinary trend in the restaurant world
by using his vast talents to introduce exotic South African
tastes and flavors to America with a new menu featuring the
highly sought-after Peri-Peri spice.
is the spice indigenous to Mozambique in South Africa, and it
is a dark pepper that can be used in a variety of ways. Mozambique
has used this spice as the main and additional ingredient in
restaurant recipes, as well as in a tastefully packaged line
of sauces and condiments that are available at the restaurant
or online. According to Chef Alfonso the products will soon
be available in markets throughout California.
upstairs bar and restaurant, featuring an open patio, is colorful
and alive. The signature cocktails and appetizers are a perfect
prelude to one of Chef Contrisciani’s elegant dinners.
Live music fills the air of the patio on weekends, and the outdoor
fireplace is a cozy spot for a romantic rendezvous. The formal
dining room downstairs is elegant in a comfortable way, with
a classic looking fireplace that centers the room. The staff
at Mozambique are highly qualified and extremely efficient.
Naturally, wines from Africa abound here, as well as a selection
of fine local and international wines that provide perfect pairing
options to enjoy with Chef Alfonso’s plates.
of the restaurant include a delicious crisped Peri-Peri rotisserie
chicken, Durban curry, a lamb dish simmered with curry powder
from Durban and served with toasted Basmati rice and chutney
mild or hot sauce from Mozambique Spice Company. Another wonderful
choice would be one of the many fine beef or seafood dishes
on the menu. My starter, a shrimp and crabmeat ravioli was outstanding,
and was covered with a lovely asparagus coulis. The cool avocado
soup, with crabmeat, scallions and coconut, was also a nice
surprise. Dessert recommendations include vanilla bean and ginger
crème brulee or Queen of the Shebeen warm chocolate cake
with coconut ice cream. Both were sinfully delicious.
you are one who still enjoys fine dining in an environment that
affords you the opportunity to actually hear the person sitting
next to you, and if you revel in a journey to the unusual in
atmosphere and taste sensations, you will love this inviting
restaurant. The prices are reasonable and the service is outstanding.
restaurant and product information visit:
Mozembique Reastaurant &
1740 S. Pacific Coast Hwy.
Laguna Beach, CA 92651
Web Site: www.mozambiquerestaurant.com
This Mozambique Recipe:
By Master Chef Alfonso Contrisciani
Food & Beverage International, BH Bureau Chief
338 N. Oakhurst Dr. Ste D, Beverly Hills, CA 90210