Last night I went to Sammish's Restauant, the Tuehende Safari House, for dinner and had the best meal I have had in Uganda. Afterwards we met and had a drink with Sammish's business partner, Wade. The two had been childhood friends here in Uganda and had left when Amin had kicked all the South Asians out. The Tuehende is actually located in a building that they lived in as kids.
Wade called Sammish 'Sammy', and made a reference to how famous his restauants were in YVR. My brain clicked and suddenly it dawned on me, Sammish was Sammi Lalji, legendary Vancouver restauranteur and the former proprieter of both Star Anise and Sammi's. I had always patronized both, and they served incredibly delicious and nuanced food. Star Anise in particular was one of the restaurants back in the 90's, along with Vij's and Tojo's, that pioneered the Vancouver 'west coast+asian' cuisine style and established it as a world class restaurant town. Sammi was a Vancouver celebrity, he even had his own cooking show.
Sammi is now in Kampala, and he and Wade are about to open another restaurant in June, something more fine dining, like Star Anise. It's not as if I need an excuse to return to Kampala, but if I did that would suffice.