ISSUE 68  |  Africana

Numero 7 Restaurant in Fez: A Nouveau/Traditional Moroccan Palette

April 16, 2013 3:30 PM

BY Justine Hand

A delicious blend of local ingredients and a clean, contemporary palette is the ideology behind a new Moroccan restaurant in Fez, in terms of both the menu and the decor. The brainchild of French chef Bruno Ussel and his American partner, Stephen di Renza, Numéro 7 (discovered via Yatzer) is housed on the ground floor of an 18th century medina. The menu, developed by Bruno, combines fresh, locally sourced ingredients prepared in a “clean, pan-Mediterranean, Moroccan way.” Likewise, the interiors–designed to be both an homage Morocco’s multicultural heritage as well as a respite from the cacophony of the medieval medina outside–express a mix of traditional Moroccan elements and contemporary, minimal style.

All photos by Steven Rothfeld, unless otherwise noted.

Above: Elements like the large photo by Japanese artist Keiichi Tahara (seen here looking from the atrium into a more private dining nook) seem to pay homage to Morocco’s more classical past.

Above: Chef Bruno Ussel and his American partner, Stephen di Renza, a former fashion director for New York’s Bergdorf Goodman Paris buying office, sit in their new establishment. Photo by Vanessa Bonnin.

Above: The balconies of the duo’s adjacent guest house, Riad no.9, look down on an intimate grouping of tables.

Above: Morocco’s amalgamation of many cultures is expressed in this dining area, in which Arabic mosaics and contemporary European furniture frame a photo from Italian artist Maí¯mouna Guerresi’s “The Giants” series.

Above: Traditional Morocco materials and motifs are expressed in a clean, contemporary way at Numéro 7.

Above: In the courtyard, a more modern, marble accent wall still echoes the rest of the traditional black and white interior.

Above: The serene and soaring walls of the medina’s courtyard provide a calm oasis from the hustle and bustle outside.

Want more Morocco? Visit our Guide to this Exotic African Country.