I love good food, you love good food, everybody loves good food. We eat to keep are bellies and souls happy.
The food culture in London and throughout the UK is booming. Every so often, new, trendy and interesting restaurants are opening up in places near you and while this is a good thing– giving us endless options on where to eat, some restaurants and eateries are a bit overpriced, overrated or culturally appropriated (think Jamie Oliver’s jerk rice). Some white chefs have tried and failed to cook our food in all it’s authentic glory. Often charging unreasonable prices while the food at home was made for way cheaper and with a dose of that good good seasoning.
Black-owned eateries have taken a stand on the food culture of the UK and putting Afro and Caribbean menus on the map. It hasn’t been an easy road since politics, racism and gentrification have a hand in it. However, they are on the rise. Many have opened up in the capital as well as throughout the rest of the UK over the years despite the challenges and continue to do so more than ever, gaining momentum. Not only are they gracing us with a delicious array of food, but they’re also creating spaces to host cool events.
So without further ado, here is a roundup of some tasty places to eat from established and up-and-coming Black owned eateries:
Zoe’s Ghana kitchen- London
Brixton based chef Zoe Adjonyoh reconnected with her Ghanaian heritage through food, creating many recipes beloved in Ghana with a contemporary twist. To her, Zoe’s Ghana Kitchen is about showing people the diversity of Africa’s culinary culture and to get them “acquainted with Jollof as they are with tacos” Quote via Zoe’s Ghana Kitchen.
Suya Spot- Bermondsey, London
Having nostalgic memories of visits to suya vendors back in Nigeria, the founder of Suya Spot in Bermondsey wanted to create the feeling of togetherness whilst eating tasty suya and attending cool events hosted by them. www.suya-spot.com.
Dougies Caribbean takeaway- Manchester
Founded in 1991, family owned Jamaican restaurant, Dougies Caribbean takeaway was inspired from the home cooked meals their mothers used to cook. Blending Jamaican and English food– representing the diversity of their customers, this iconic Jamaican eatery continue to grow their businesses to new heights. www.dougiescaribbeantakeaway.co.uk/
Blue Nile Restaurant- Birmingham
Cooking authentic East African dishes (specialising in Ethopian food), the Blue Nile restaurant in Birmingham serves tasty meals that is pocket friendly and adventurous. With its ambient music, it feels like you’ve been transported to an East African country. www.birminghambluenilerestaurant.co.uk
Chalé Let’s Eat- London
Another restaurant bringing Ghanaian food culture to the UK, Chale Let’s Eat creates classic Ghanian dishes that are full of flavour, colourful and wholesome, using fresh ingredients that are cooked in innovate and new ways. Opening in 2014, founder Alicia Ama fuses her Ghanaian, Guyanese and Togo heritage into the flavours of Chalé’s dishes. www.chaleletseat.com.
Enish Restaurant- London
Upscale Nigerian restaurant Enish is at the heart of Lewisham. Known for their bold flavours the restaurant cooks traditional Nigerian dishes with a modern take. The meals are a celebration of Nigerian food– a culinary culture which has been made famous globally. www.enish.co.uk
Island Social Club- London
Creating tasty and honest dishes, modern Caribbean and British restaurant Island Social Club has recently opened a permanent residence in Haggerston on Kingsland Road. Known for their unique and delicious roti meals and rum drinks, Caribbean Londoners Marie Mitchell and Joseph Pilgrim are on a mission to bring Caribbean food and “Black British culture” to London. www.islandsocialclub.co.uk
Some other Black owned restaurants:
Caribbean Croft- Bristol
Dark Sugars- London
Jollof Café- Manchester
Dee’s Table- London
Cottons- various London locations.
What are your favourite Black owned eateries?