Saturday, August 18, 2007

Anyone going to Mali?

If so, the Djembe Hotel in Malako looks like an interesting place to stay. Only $30/day includes high-speed Internet access, light breakfast, full lunch and dinner. It seems like a great opportunity to also learn about Mali life, culture, and especially drumming.

The djembe is a traditional drum from West Africa, played for many different occasions in Africa and is associated with traditional dances. Jeremy Chevrier, who runs the hotel with his wife Tewah, started the above web site, and Rootsy Records. The mission of Rootsy Records is the cultural preservation and promotion of traditional djembe drumming music, including the preservation and promotion of African culture, knowledge and values. There are a lot of interesting videos on the site, showing how much you can do with an inexpensive camcorder. It's great example of documenting culture, and sharing your works.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Lucca: A great restaurant

Had a fantastic dinner with my wife yesterday at Lucca

The owner, "Lucky," ran the Bank Street Cafe for many years. But Lucca is a totally differnt place, casual but upscale. The food was delicious, the service great, and the owner friendly and attentive to every nuance. My wife's scallops and shrimp over linguini included the largest shrimp I've seen in a long time. The sauce was esquisite. My cajun salmon had just the right amount of heat in the slightly charred exterior (some of us Northern folks can't handle too much), and the fish inside was fresh and moist. Vegetables are purchased every morning.

Here is a 23 points out of 25 food review

I would have given our meal 25 out of 25. Dinner entrees are $20 to $22, and include a generous salad and fresh bread with herb butter. This is a bit above our usual budget, but we splurged as we are "on vacation". We were going to go to Maine, but decided to paint the house instead, and needed a small morale boost. Lucca definitely provided it. If you ever need a perk, or want to eat at someplace special, and have the funds, I recommend it highly.

Lucca is the best evidence yet that New London is making a comeback as a nice place to live and visit.