Culinary Tour of Jiko at Jambo House, Animal Kingdom Lodge, Walt Disney World

The culinary tour of Jiko at Jambo House, Animal Kingdom Lodge is the second part of the combined Boma and Jiko Culinary Tour. To the best of our knowledge, this tour is offered at 4:00 pm everyday and is free.

Although we’ve eaten a Jiko a number of times, it doesn’t go on our “must do” list because of the heavy prevalence of black pepper in their food. We tend to go to Sanaa instead.

Hilkka (yes, her name is Dutch) from Nambia was our guide for this portion of the tour, she was a cheerful and engaging guide.

WARNING – THERE ARE SPOILERS IN THIS BLOG POST – WARNING

WARNING – THERE IS LEARNING IN THIS BLOG POST – WARNING

She began by showing us the wine room and explaining that Jiko has the largest collect of exclusively South African wines. We’d never seen the inside of the wine room, it is rather small and intimate and can be subdivided into two even smaller areas for special parties.

Wine Room at Jiko

Wine Room at Jiko

Seating in the Wine Room at Jiko

Seating in the Wine Room at Jiko

Wine "trees" in the Wine Room at Jiko

Wine “trees” in the Wine Room at Jiko

The dining room has three very unique design features…

  1. The back wall changes colors throughout the dinner service (they don’t offer lunch at Jiko), the changing colors emulate the sunsets and the sunrises in Africa
  2. The flying silver light fixtures are “canoe birds” – its a sign of good luck when they fly overhead
  3. The rings on the columns are representative of the neck rings that Maasai women wear – only married women may wear them, they are a sign of her status and good deeds and also signs of her husband’s standing in the tribe
Long view of the restaurant

Long view of the restaurant

Canoe Birds

“Canoe Birds” flying overhead

The columns are decorated with "Maasai neck rings"

The columns are decorated with “Maasai neck rings”

The actual meaning of “jiko” is “the cooking place” and the restaurant Jiko has it’s own jiko in the center area. It is possible to sit here during dinner and watch the chefs as they prepare flatbreads and appetizers, you must request to sit at the jiko when you check in. There are two woodburning ovens at the rear of the jiko, and there’s a Hidden Mickey atop them.

The actual "jiko" (cooking place)

The actual “jiko” (cooking place)

Two ovens, surmounted on the ceiling by a Hidden Mickey

Two ovens, surmounted on the ceiling by a Hidden Mickey

The last thing on our tour was a tasting of the Jiko Taste of Africa, their bread service. Hilkka served us bread and dips and helped us to understand how to eat them. She suggested putting some of each dip on our plates, trying them with each of the breads, and then mixing the dips up and trying them again.

Hilkka standing in the jiko

Hilkka standing in the jiko

Four dips for the breads (clockwise from top left): Bhuna Masala (red), Kalamata Hummus (tan),

Four dips for the breads (clockwise from top left): Bhuna Masala (red), Kalamata Hummus (tan), Moroccan Chermoula (red with green specks), and Sagh Dahl (green)

 

Breads

Breads (front to back): Pappadam, Poppy Seed Lavash, and Naan

Explanation of the Bread Service

Explanation of the Bread Service

This was very tasty, we were quite pleased when we mixed up the dips and we could have stood there and eaten a whole bread basket each (it would have been possible because there were only five adults on the tour at this point and the other 3 were avoiding carbs or were very unadventurous eaters).

Thank you Hilkka! It was a very enjoyable visit to Jiko!

 

 

 

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