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African fusion restaurant chain launches first UK site

London SW6's North End Road has welcomed its first African fusion restaurant to the historic high street, France-based chain, Afrik'n'Fusion.

It's the latest addition to the street's thriving food quarter which already includes an abundance of choice, from its well-liked vegan eateries to the most popular crepe restaurant in London.

Housed in what was once the Barrow Boy pub (and more recently a pizzeria), Afrik'n'Fusion focuses on African dishes, influenced and modified by other nations' styles.

Until now, Afrik'n'Fusion has been just been based in France with half a dozen eateries in Paris. With Fulham being the first foray into the UK, another outlet will soon open in Casablanca.

'We chose North End Road because of the great mix in the area,' said Nordine of Afrik'n'Fusion. 'We had offers from agencies in Camden and in east and central London, but I love the shops in North End Road and I want the people to discover our vibes.'

Nordine added, 'We want to work with the local community. Brexit doesn't mean anything to me: we're all Londoners, and I've always felt welcome in Fulham.'

Diners may spot some Chelsea and Fulham footballers of West African origin in the restaurant as the authentic dishes have a powerful appeal.

A large mural by Alessandra Tortone, a London-based artist, decorates the back wall, and upbeat African music sets the tone. The cutlery is a distinctive gold colour.

Classic main courses include Thieb, a tomatoey, spiced chicken dish served with filling and flavoursome small-grain jollof brown rice. It's the national dish of Senegal, and it's served with a small bowl of ferocious cayenne pepper sauce.

Other Senegalese offerings include: Yassa, a marinated onion dish with white rice; Mafe, a nut stew served with vegetables which originates in Mali; Kellewelle, a plantain dish from Ghana; and Attieke, a fermented cassava couscous from Congo.

More mainstream alternatives, if you go down the fusion route, include burgers, salads and grilled meals, including a whole chargrilled marinated sea bream.

There are vegetarian options too - and special discounted deals at lunchtime.