Photo: GoDaddy
Photo: GoDaddy

New York, NY (Sept 5, 2017) – New York African Restaurant Week (NYARW) will kick off its fifth annual celebration of African cuisine and culture on October 1-22, 2017, featuring a curated selection of more than 25 restaurants, world renowned chefs, and 75 events that will bring a “taste of Africa” across New York City. How times have changed since the first time this was done. Many people have compared how the restaurant management has been run recently and they can all happily say that it is a huge improvement since we started celebrating Afrcian cuisine. Many of these restaurants are now making use of high quality equipment and supplies, such as those you can find online (, to keep up with their competitors.

The complete line-up of restaurants, chefs, and events for this year’s NYARW is available at with additional pop-up experiences and sweepstakes to be announced.

Launched in 2013 by Akin Akinsanya, Founder & CEO of A Taste of Africa USA, the three-week long NYARW includes restaurants in Manhattan and Brooklyn offering special prix-fixe menus during lunch and dinner reflecting cuisines and flavors from various parts of Africa and the African Diaspora. More than one hundred thousand restaurant patrons are expected to be taken across a “GastroAfrique Culinary Odyssey” with traditional African dishes and avant-garde “Afrofusion” menus, courtesy of restaurants and internationally acclaimed chefs. It is tremendously humbling to see ethnicity and heritage being celebrated trhough food, in an artistic manner. In fact my friend had been hoping to set up her own small japanese restaurant, hoping to create and sell the food she was brought up eating to the paying public. I will admit she was apprehensive about the money involved, but we had a look together to see where costs could be cut. We started to compare business energy plans and we were very impressed with the savings that were possible.

  • NYARW participating restaurants include Bar Omar, Ponty Bistro, Madiba, Queen of Sheba, Café Rue Dix, Buka, Safari, and more, collectively representing African and African-inspired cuisines from Ethiopia, Senegal, Algeria, Ghana, Nigeria, Morocco, Somalia, Andalusia, the Caribbean, and the American South.

  • NYARW participating chefs include Pierre Thiam, Cisse, Victor Bongo, Hamid Idrissi, Nadine Nelson, Selassie Atadika, Philipos, Serge Pambo, Charmain Sithappah, Shorne Benjamin, and other celebrated chefs within the global African Diaspora.

As a festival committed to bringing awareness to critical social issues around food security in New York City, Africa and around the world, each year NYARW also partners with community organizations aligned with the NYARW mission. During this year’s festival, each Wednesday and Thursday will be coined “Harvest Day” and “Vocal Day”, where a percentage of proceeds from prix-fixe menus will benefit City Harvest and VOCAL New York, organizations working to combat hunger and homelessness in New York City.

“Within the burgeoning NYC culinary scene, New York African Restaurant Week presents an exciting and unique opportunity to celebrate the best of African cuisine,” said Akinsanya, NYARW Founder & CEO. “The Festival targets a culturally rich and diverse audience in the City, both residents and international visitors, who have one thing in common – a love of or a curiosity for the intricacies of African food, cooking and culture.”

“New York African Restaurant Week is a celebration of African cuisine, restaurants, and chefs and a promotion of diverse voices in the global culinary movement – both celebrity and emerging,” said Tanaka Mawindi, NYARW Event Director and Head of Business Development. “It’s also a commitment to community development and social impact that transcends boundaries. We’re inviting all of NYC to be a part of that.”

Key partners for New York African Restaurant Week 2017 include the James Beard Foundation, Nando’s, Saveur, South African Tourism, South African Airways, Food-X, Food Tank, Mahir N. Nisar Law Associates, The Africa Channel, Immersion Journeys, Toast of Brooklyn, and Flatbush Fest.

  • Nigerian Independence Day Dinner on Sun. Oct 1 at Buka Restaurant

  • James Beard Dinner: Odyssey Across Africa on Sat. Oct 7 from 7 pm to 10 pm at the James Beard House – Hosted in partnership with the James Beard Foundation, critically acclaimed African chefs from New York city restaurants and worldwide will present a 8-course thrilling dinner experience. Participating chefs: Pierre Thiam, Victor Bongo, Selassie Atadika, Nadine Nelson, Serge Pambo, and Charmain Sithappah. Tickets can be purchased by visiting the James Beard events website.

  • African Restaurant Week Festival on Sun, Oct 8 from 12:30 pm to 7 pm at Industry City in Brooklyn -Over 30 African restaurants and food vendors, celebrity chef demos and appearances, beer and wine tastings, live DJ performances/a day party, kids’ spa zone, and 20 market vendors equals the mega-festival event of the Fall. GA and VIP packages available ranging from $15 to $80. Tickets on sale on eventbrite. One lucky festival goer will win a luxury stay and safari trip for two to Ghana.

  • Chef Collabo Event Series: Chef Cisse and Chef Bongo on Mon, Oct 9 from 7 pm to 9 pm at Ponty Bistro

  • Tokunbo Koiki: A Taste of Nigeria on Thurs, Oct 12 from 7 pm to 9 pm at Bed-Vyne

  • Linner is for Lovers on Sun, Oct 15 from 4 pm to 6:30 pm at Madiba Restaurant

  • Jollof Without Borders on Sun, Oct 15 from 4:30 pm to 7 pm at Joloff Restaurant

  • Food Business Pitch Competition on Fri, Oct 20 from 10 am to 2 pm at Microsoft New York

  • Poets Café, an on-going event series every Thursday during the Festival at select restaurants

2017 NYARW Participant Sweepstakes Include:

  • 21 Days of Free Dinner for two

  • Roundtrip airfare for two to anywhere South African Airways flies

  • An all-inclusive luxury stay and safari trip to Ghana, courtesy of Immersion Journeys

  • Nando’s Peri Peri hot sauce goodie bags

For more information on NYARW, including a full list of participating restaurants, prix-fixe menus, chef bios and special events are available at, on Instagram @AfricanRestaurantWeek and on Facebook at Make sure you’re not missing any restaurant offers by checking out Great Eats.

Follow The Burton Wire on Twitter or Instagram @TheBurtonWire.

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