Monday, November 14, 2011

Mama's Kitchen Cafe

ART of WAR Concept: A general waits until the army's food is cooked before he eats.

In the past couple of weeks, I noticed some activity in the former Maple View Deli location. The old signage had come down and the building recently had a paint job. This past weekend, I decided to stop in to be nosey to see what was going on. There, I met Richardo Da’Salvia who introduced himself as the new chef at what is now “Mama’s Kitchen.” Of course, I was excited to hear this news because MLK Ave., SE could always use another food option.  And, I was equally pleased to learn that Richardo, a 15-year veteran chef, is also a Ward 8 resident and a member of our own Bethel Christian Fellowship Church located directly across the street from the newly re-opened MLK restaurant.
A few days after they opened, I stopped through again and met Fatima Nayir (Mama). Fatima and her husband own the new café. They moved to Washington DC from their native country, Turkey.  When I inquired about what brought them to Ward 8, she replied, “my husband always thought this building was in a great location and with Homeland Security soon to be down the street we know we will have a steady customer base.” I inquired further about the inspiration for the name of the café.  “My four kids tell all their friends that there is no better food than what is made in my Mama’s Kitchen.”

Ricardo and Fatima have the vision to offer some of the best tasting food in the city. “I want folks who work in the White House to want to drive over here and talk about how great the food and service are,” says Ricardo.
After being so nosey, I decided I needed to sample the food and ordered a slice of cheese pizza that cost me about $3. I was not expecting much, but to my surprise the pizza was pretty darn good. Fatima makes all her pizzas and breads fresh daily.
Be sure to stop by Mama’s Kitchen located at 1208 Maple View Pl., SE and let me know what you think.  Store hours are:  7am – 11pm; Monday – Friday and 9am - 5pm Saturday - Sunday.  One of the first things you’ll notice is that there is no bullet proof glass.  The Nayirs want to provide a truly “open kitchen” environment.

Fatima and Richardo
You don't have to eat and run...

Already a steady flow of customers

Anacostia Resident, Earl ordering a pizza.
He says his daughter loves Mama's pizza.

Ricardo likes to brag on his homemade Mambo Sauce.


  1. After reading your post, I stopped by yesterday. The Philly Cheese Steak was 'awesome'! Mama and her staff were excellent! I plan to stop by again today.

    thanks for the post!

  2. Correction* Chef Ricardo Da’Silva is the correct spelling. And the food is great.

  3. Mama's Kitchen is destined for success! First of all, the food is slammin' (and surprisingly very reasonably priced considering the high quality of ingredients used), especially the chicken steak sandwich on freshly baked bread smothered with sauteed mushrooms, onions and green peppers with a savory slice of provolone cheese to seal in the goodness. Uhm, uhm gooooood!!! But, beyond the succulent food, the atmopshere is warm, inviting and amiable and the owners are simply out of this world! They are gracious and accommodating to a fault! The first thing that struck me was the openness of the space and seating areas without a bullet proof enclosure(Anacostians, we're movin' on up!!!). The second thing I noticed was an indigenous staff of employees. It blew me away! I made up my mind on the spot that this would be an establishment that I would support and encourage others to patronize. A new business, hiring local folk and not in existence for 1 month....I know where my dollars will be spent when it comes to dining out. And, that is exactly the point, you can dine out at Mama's Kitchen and feel that not only have you gotten your money's worth but your business is very much appreciated. You will fall in love with Mama Fatima on the spot! She is effusive! I could go on to talk about her husband, Musa, the man or brains behind the scene, but he would require more space than this page can allow. Coming to know him was an added treat! You owe it to yourself to stop by Mama's Kitchen and sample the fare. Trust me, you will be back in short order along with a caravan following you. Mama's Kitchen is here to stay! Enjoy it, Anacostia!