Outside Jambo Café, you’ll find a strip mall, a parking lot and a busy Cerrillos Road. Inside, however, is a colorful atmosphere with painted walls and framed African art. Even more vibrant is the East African cuisine. Start with the coconut shrimp for an appetizer, which comes with five fist-sized Wild Tiger shrimp fried to a crisp and seasoned with grated coconut. For dipping pleasures, the shrimp comes with a light mango-ginger sauce that’s both fruity and tangy. As for entrées, Jambo may be famous around the community for its soups and stews, but newbies should try the grilled jerked chicken. The meal is served in three layers, starting with fried banana on top, jerked chicken in the middle and rice and beans as the foundation. Each flavor blends together seamlessly, with fried banana tasting as sweet and chewy as a chocolate chip cookie right out the oven, a chicken that’s soft and easy to navigate, and a curry sauce that’s spicy but not overpowering. Those who want more spice can turn to the reggae country-style salsa picante served as a condiment on each table. All in all, fans of New Mexico chile will be pleased with the tingly effect Jambo’s food leaves in their mouths.
2010 Cerrillos Road, 473-1269
Lunch and dinner Monday-Saturday