So very Footscray

7 Comments

daf4

 

Cafe D’Afrique, 137 Nicholson Street, Footscray. Phone: 9689 9411

Consider The Sauce was once a regular – a few years back – at Cafe D’Afrique.

But for coffee only.

It was excellent coffee at an equally excellent price.

But I never got a handle on the food situation.

Sometimes there seemed to activity in the kitchen, sometimes not.

Sometimes some customers were eating, more often – IIRC – no one was.

Certainly, there was no menu or blackboard.

So I gave it up, and even moved on from coffee visits as work and other activities had me looking elsewhere.

 

daf2

 

But today, having completed a few chores nearby, I spy at least half the 20 or so customers chowing down.

“This is ridiculous,” thinks I. “There’s food here – and I want to try it”

So I initiate a to-and-fro discussion with genial gent I take to be the owner.

“Beans,” says he.

This would be the foul I see being happily consumed by several customers.

“Anything else?”

“Meat …”

“How much?”

“$10.”

“OK.”

Ordering done, I take a seat at a back table and wait.

But not for long.

 

daf1

 

I’m very happy with my lunch.

The salad is typically African – fresh, zingy and powdered with pepper.

The lentils are mush, mild and nice.

The lamb is fantastic – lean, pan-fried, free of fat and gristle, seasoned with something that could be just plain curry powder but definitely includes turmeric.

It’s a beaut, light, tasty and satisfying lunch.

 

daf3

 

An ultra-low coffee price means nothing if the brew isn’t good.

Still, I’m stunned to discover the admission price for my cafe late is STILL $2.50 – same as it was several years ago.

Best of all, my coffee is utterly excellent.

I’m told the name of the Sudanese dish I’ve just enjoyed is cheya. From what I can gather from Mr Google, this means something like “fried meat”.

As I depart, I see a recently arrived customer served what appears to be tibs and injera, so there’s more going on here than the absence of a menu might seem to indicate.

But you do need to ask.

Personally, I enjoy this sort of scenario – it requires enjoyable engagement that can be missed by merely pointing at a menu entry.

It feels good to be fed and back on familiar terms with such a righteous Footscray fixture.

7 thoughts on “So very Footscray

    • Hi Cookie! That’s a big question! Truth is, though, that somewhat like Footscray’s Vietnamese restaurants, the African places almost all do something good so you can’t really go wrong. I have a very special fondness for Kokeb. The food is great, they did the Eritrean kids fund-raiser with us and the family I now consider friends. I like Ras Dashen. Africa Taste in Seddon has some different angles going on. And it’s not all Ethiopian – we love love love Safari in Ascot Vale for Somalian.

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  1. Oh wow, I’d totally dig into that wonderful spread of food on that platter. And agree that some of the best meals in life occur around these unplanned happenstances. I remember absolutely LOVING a $2 streetside meal of charcoal grilled meats with fresh herbs (including poppy leaves) along a dusty street in Phonsavan, Laos.

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