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Feb 24, 2003 06:42 PM

African restaurants in San Francisco?

  • m

After reading an article in an airplane magazine on the African restaurants in Harlem, I'm wondering about the representation of African food in the Bay Area. I've loved Ethiopian food for ages and want to branch out locally, if possible! Someone suggested Joubert's (South African) to me - I was slightly disappointed but it was an interesting experiment.

Other than Massawa, Axum Cafe and Joubert's, are there any other African restaurants in SF that are worthy of a tasting expedition? I'm particularly interested in cuisine of the Ivory Coast, Mali, Ghana, and Nigeria, but anything is worth a shot if it's hound-recommended!

Link below; click on "Roving Gourmet"


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  1. Plenty of good African restaurants in the East Bay if you're able to come over here. You can try doing citysearch for some more ideas, but Cafe Colucci which is on Telegraph in Oakland is a good bet for Ethiopian. And in the city, you might also want to try the Baobab Cafe in the Mission district for Senegalese food, I really enjoyed it. Google for address, etc.

    just some ideas. :)

    1. Rasselas at California/Divisadero (SF) serves Ethiopean food. Also has good live music 6 or 7 nights a week.

      1. Well, there is charming upscale Moroccan (Aziza), along with a few Egyptian places in the Sunset.

        Thanks to someone on this board, I discovered Sawa on Divisadero, which is Ethiopian or Eritrean; spicier than Axum and very friendly owners.

        I love the Baobab's drinks and atmosphere too, but I think the food has slid a lot since they first opened.

        3 Replies
        1. re: Windy

          Oops, I was so focused on West African that I forgot about North Africa (ie Moroccan, Egyptian).

          Has anyone been to Al Masri Egyptian restaurant?

          What's the deal with the food at Baobab? Is it anything that could be avoided by trying more standard dishes? Is it worth trying at all?

          1. re: Maya

            The problem at Baobab was sloppy preparation and overcooking/dressing, because I've been ordering pretty much the same dishes (mafe with couscous, their once-delicious house salad, side of plaintains) since they opened. The kabobs are okay, acceptable but mediocre. The service is iffy, or maybe I'm not cool enough.

            Their cocktails with fresh ginger, tamarind, and hibiscus are great, though. Go for drinks and snacks, and you won't be disappointed. Dinner a few doors down at Charanga (upscale Latino food which Stanley Stephen recently enquired about) is a better choice.

          2. re: Windy

            Just went down to Divisadero to check out Sawa; it's closed for remodeling. Serves me right for not calling ahead.