While Accra offers a wide range of international cuisine, there's nothing quite like sampling traditional dishes in some of the capital's best-loved spots. These are Time Out readers favourite restaurants as voted for in the Time Out Accra Rate Your City campaign
Conveniently situated close to the centre of Osu, Buka is, without question, one of the best lunch spots in the city. More often than not it has the full tables to show for it. Set on the first floor, so there’s a sense of escape from the throng, with lively music and wraparound wooden trellises adding to the ambience. The food itself hinges largely on Ghanaian and Nigerian specialties – dishes include okra stew and eba (a dough ball eaten with stews). Service can slow down during busy lunches.
Enjoy authentic Ghanaian cuisine in a modern atmosphere at The Chop Bar. With all the mouthwatering Ghanaina dishes on the menu, you won't be disappointed. Reasonably priced and with great service, the Chop Bar is a great lunch spot. Be sure to visit. Its Chop Time! You're Invited!
There are two branches of Maquis Tante Marie. The newer is in Accra Mall, but the original Labone branch is the most atmospheric. All the seating is open-sided and the tasteful bamboo furniture and bright yellow tablecloths add to the exotic vibe of the place. The menu is definitively African with authentic dishes predominantly from Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire, such as tilapia and banku, nyama choma (grilled, spiced meat, usually mutton) and fish yassa (grilled in a tangy lemon marinade). It’s a great place for some traditional West African food. Other location Accra Mall (0224 322 5181).
This popular restaurant often has live bands, including highlife musicians. The food’s good, but the music’s better. Many sets start off with a mixture of reggae, and other (random) hits before returning with a highlife set that gets everyone up and dancing. The musicianship is usually excellent.
More of a street stall, Katawodieso is almost legendary in Accra. Run by the matriarch Ruby Duff-Tay and her sisters, it serves traditional Ghanaian food. Within a courtyard are bubbling pots of banku, fufu and jollof rice. The speciality here, however, is waakye – a dish of refried beans, rice, spicy sauce, some well-cooked meat and a bit of fish, usually eel. Walk in, take a seat if there is room, or order in the kiosk from one of the smartly dressed waitresses and see what arrives. The restaurant has been at this location for a quarter of a century and is known by everyone in Accra.
You would have thought, judging by the government officials, the occasional tribal leader and the Reverend Jesse Jackson (whose picture in the restaurant hangs in pride of place) that Country Kitchen is an upmarket joint. However, the main appeal here is hearty home cooking that remains true to Ghanaian classics. The atmosphere is as relaxed as the staff, but the food is freshly cooked. Fufu, banku and jollof rice each come with a choice of chicken, beef, mutton or fish, usually ‘red fish’. The larger grilled tilapia comes with banku, a bowl of water, washing up liquid and a lack of cutlery. It offers a take-away and delivery service.