Last year, GhanaMade announced its focus to celebrate, recognise, and support African- and black- owned food establishments across the New York and London metropolitan areas. So when we heard that an African establishment had opened in the most priciest and elitist neighbourhoods of Manhattan, we could not resist the opportunity to dine with our West African cousins.
So I know what you were all thinking: how did Ghanaians find themselves in a Nigerian restaurant in the middle of New York City? Please, our disclaimer in bold above should save us. So our Ghanafuo, please be patient with us we have many of our own establishments on our list of establishments to visit!
In midtown Manhattan on a rather residential block, lies a hidden gem. From the time you walk in, the gold details, the neon lit grass wall, and the golden high top chairs let you know that you have reached the epitome of African excellence. The owners of Lagos took time not only with their menu but with the venue itself. You’re introduced with gold bottles of Ace of Spade covering the bar wall, the space is fitted with a DJ booth, snaked-skin printed walls, and authentically made artwork hung on the walls throughout the space – attention to detail was made!
The establishment exudes luxury from golden cutlery to waiting staff who know what exactly what you need or want before you even ask! We were treated to an array of food dishes and drinks during our visit which left us wanting more if it weren’t for our stomachs to say enough was enough. We tried their
As natives of New York City, we’ve only known of one other black restaurant that has existed in midtown during my lifetime (it was P. Diddy’s restaurant, named after his first son, Justin’s) so we knew this experience would be special. Lagos Restaurant embodied what I would like to call a “December in Naija or Ghana” experience. The music was perfect, ranging from Afrobeats to 90’s throwbacks. A Burna Boy concert was plastered across the TV screens as we enjoyed delicious drinks, appetizers and a great meal.
The food on their menu has a range of variety from beef suya and akara (V), fried rice, peri-peri chicken, to plantain fritter burgers. They do have some vegan or pescatarian friendly options on their full menu. We were tempted to sample their 24 karat golden wings, but we decided to save that selection for another occasion! What stood out in the various dishes that were tried was the careful balance of the spices and pepper.
The New York tri-state area serves as a home to a plethora of African diasporic ethnicities, and these communities have worked hard to support their mom and pop shops which emulate the mother countries from which they came. However, Lagos Restaurant takes the additional step to fuse together the luxurious tradition of West African culture with Western contemporary fine dining.
Overall with our experience, we would recommend Lagos if you’re ever considering a West African cuisine and experience if you’re in New York City. No matter if you’re a resident and wanting something new and exciting or a passerby with limited choices. You can find more detailed information at their website and Instagram below: