New East African Restaurant in Downtown Detroit is Uniquely Delicious
I recently visited Baobab Fare in Downtown Detroit and was so happy with the experience I can’t wait to go back.
Baobab Fare is an East African restaurant that opened in the New Center area of Detroit this spring.
Opened after years of planning by Burundi, Africa refugees Hamissi Mamba and Nadia Nijimbere, the restaurant is a celebration of hard work and determination to make a dream come true.
Before opening the restaurant was delayed by COVID-19 last year, but it’s finally open and entirely worth a trip downtown.
Baobab Fare was the winner of $50,000 from Motor City Match and a $50,000 Hatch Detroit grand prize (2017). Both organizations provide financial assistance to deserving small business ventures in and around Detroit.
The completely renovated new space at the corner of Grand Boulevard and Woodward Avenue is within the site of the Fisher Building and part of thriving neighborhood revitalization for small businesses.
The space is decorated in a cheery yellow with black and grey accents. A mural pays homage to their roots and Detroit’s future. The restaurant is approachable and good for carryout, a quick meal or more leisurely dining.
The menu offers a variety of traditional East African dishes that will accommodate a variety of preferences. There are meat and seafood options as well plenty of options for vegetarians and others.
I tried a sampling of dishes, including Kumuhana, a pan-fried chicken in rich, tangy mustard-onion sauce. Served with fried plantains, stewed yellow beans, and your choice of spiced rice pilau or coconut rice. I opted for coconut rice—also, the Petite Pois, garden peas and potatoes with carrots, and savory spices.
Lastly, I had a side of the Kuku marinated chicken grill-roasted with onion, garlic, and lemon, alongside fresh corn salad. For dessert, I had Tamu, a pudding made from avocados and passion fruit, garnished with chia seeds.
Each dish was unique and exquisite. The flavors were unlike anything I’d ever had before with exuberantly flavorful spices and seasonings. Typically, I have a plain palette with a preference for minimal seasoning. This food, however, wasn’t “seasoned” as much as it seemed to be naturally flavorful and spectacular.
The Tamu, especially, was so startling in it originality and refreshing flavor, I wouldn’t have been able to pinpoint exactly how it was made or precisely what ingredients it contained if the menu didn’t indicate.
Like many of us, I’m often looking for something different to eat outside of the traditional. Baobab Fare knocked it out of the park for having delicious food, unlike anything I’ve ever had before. It is different, but not so different that there isn’t something for everyone.
Not only was the food superb, the hospitality and friendly atmosphere make it an absolute stand-out. Baobab promises a meal you will tell your friends about and a place that you are guaranteed to visit more than once.
Must try: Burundi coffee - and take a bag home!
Find it at www.baobabfare.com or 6568 Woodward Avenue
Suite 100, Detroit, MI 48202.