1. Baobab Fare
The yearslong buildup for this restaurant run by a Burundian refugee couple lasted so long it almost seemed it would never happen, its opening only further delayed by the pandemic. Undaunted, and having already overcome much larger obstacles to get here, husband-and-wife duo Mamba Hamissi and Nadia Nijimbere finally debuted their love letter to Detroit in New Center last winter, serving brightly colored homestyle East African dishes out of a highly visible and stylish corner space at Woodward and E Grand Blvd.
There are no misses on the menu, from the intore, a savory vegetarian eggplant stew, to the nyumbani, a fall-apart hunk of beef simmered in tomato sauce, to the pitch-perfect ending of tangy avocado and passionfruit pudding — each dish made with a mother’s care and love. Taken together with the couple’s warm brand of heartfelt hospitality, Baobab Fare is a real winner, and our top choice.