Mar 24, 2023 - Food and Drink

Popular New Center restaurant Baobab Fare plans second spot on east side

The building at 16900 E. Warren Ave. where Baobab Fare aims to open a second location. Photo: Courtesy of Hamissi Mamba

Baobab Fare, a nationally acclaimed East African restaurant in New Center, is planning a second location.

What's happening: Married co-owners Hamissi Mamba and Nadia Nijimbere are looking to buy a building at 16900 E. Warren Ave. in East English Village from the city for $145,000 and renovate it, per city documents.

  • The purchase still requires city council approval.

Between the lines: Baobab Fare opened in early 2021 and has had two successful years, Mamba tells Axios. The owners have been thinking about a second location since last year and originally got an offer to open in Ann Arbor.

  • But they ultimately decided to stay, grow and contribute in Detroit.
  • "We started everything from here," Mamba says.
  • The building in the growing East Warren corridor, he says, was an opportunity to bring needed restaurant options to the east side area.
  • It also allows the restaurant to expand to space much larger than its small spot at Woodward and East Grand Boulevard.

What's next: The co-owners are still early in the process. They plan to start construction on their new space around October and open around next summer, with a build-out cost of around $1 million-$1.2 million, Mamba says.

  • The spot will have a similar concept and ambience.

Of note: The co-owners are semifinalists for this year's James Beard restaurant industry awards. Mamba also recently won the Food Network competition "Chopped."


Get more local stories in your inbox with Axios Detroit.


Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more

More Detroit stories

No stories could be found


Get a free daily digest of the most important news in your backyard with Axios Detroit.


Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more