There is a restaurant in the Bacongo neighborhood of Brazzaville called Maman Ro. It is literally a woman’s house. She sets up tables in her garden, makes food in her kitchen, and serves a set menu to everyone. She is a warm and friendly person, and, as corny as this might sound, she gave me a big hug and a smile at the end of the meal, and it felt like I was at a friend’s house.
She makes typical Congolese dishes, like grilled fish, grilled chicken, rice with vegetables, salad, fried bananas, and saka saka, but they are the best versions of each dish I have ever had. It was far and away the best meal I’ve had in Brazzaville.
(Side note: I did make risotto at home for the first time a few weeks ago, and it was really, really amazing. If you haven’t made risotto at home, I highly suggest it. It’s the ultimate comfort food.)
Saka saka, by the way, is a dish made from cassava leaves, which somewhat resembles collard greens. Congo is maybe one of the other places where people use the cassava leaves in dishes.
There were very few mosquitoes while we were there, probably because there were several bats swooping around the garden all evening, eating them. Hooray for bats! (Side note: Yes, I know bats spread diseases. I’d rather have bats swooping than mosquitoes biting, though.)
Here are some mediocre iPhone photos: