Translated from Creole as 'delicious' or 'good-taste', we searched for translations of the word 'delicious' and found 'Bongou'. We liked the way it sounded and the name stuck!
Bongou represents a collection of limited menu items served within a casual setting. We serve canteen style food that incorporates exciting spice blends and sauces, popular in the city of Lagos, Nigeria.
Nigeria is a huge multicultural country and the most densely populated in Africa. Its estimated population of roughly 200 million people makes Nigeria the 7th largest population in the world. Nigeria is in fact a country made up of countries, and very often categorized by 3 major people groups.
The reality however is that there are over 250 distinct people groups with over 500 languages. Each group with its own customs, traditions, food etc. Imagine the United Kingdom, France, Italy, and German all grouped together and being called a country!!
Lagos (Èkó as the locals would say) is the most populous city in Nigeria and the African continent. It is one of the fastest growing cities in the world. It is home to every Nigerian and many non-Nigerians alike.
A melting pot of people from all over Nigeria and many other parts of the world including Indians, Lebanese, Chinese, Koreans, British, Syrians, Amerians, Italians, French, German etc. The busy and vibrant nature of Lagos has had a huge impact on the food experience in city.
Lagos happens to be where you will experience Nigerian food at its best. It’s were the different cultures come together and share their recipes as well as their dining tables. It is also where international food shines. Lagosians love their sharwarma, chicken in black bean sauce, korma curry, southern fried chicken, stuff crust pizzas, and bubble tea!!
Totally unplanned, the journey towards Bongou started out with a single item and dinner party Rock Star! – our Beni & Honey BBQ Pork Ribs! We were inundated with requests to cook these Ribs over and over again, before it evolved into a formal offering in 2014. The Bongou Nigeria menu has expanded a little bit since then and has now become a house party favourite for many customers across Lagos. (@bongou_nigeria).
Moving to Edinburgh in 2018 we wanted to continue the 'Bongou journey' and share our passion for the bold flavours of 'Lagos' with Edinburgh. We came across a unique opportunity to take over and run the North fort café last year in 2019... a move that subsequently afforded us the opportunity to convert the Café into a space from which to express Bongou.
Incorporating bold flavours and probably best described as Lagos-inspired "pop" food, our menu combines traditional ingredients with elements and methods from around the world to create a unique fusion experience, that basically sums up a 'few-of-our-favourite' things. Every aspect has been crafted and developed from scratch …
We previously ran the venue in typical Café style - open for breakfast & lunch during the day. We believe our current menu is better suited to lunch and maybe evenings and weekends. We would love to test this concept with you over the next few weeks at different times during the day...