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World Travel Guide > Guides > Africa > Nigeria

Nigeria Food and Drink

Lagos, Abuja and other major cities have a big selection of restaurants, serving everything from traditional Nigerian dishes to French baguettes, excellent sushi and good hamburgers. In short, European, North American and Asian tastes are well catered for, and you'll also find a range of different cuisines from across the African continent.

Although there are self-service cafes, mainly in department stores, most restaurants have table service. In the north, meat is more popular than in other areas, although it's important to note that pork is forbidden in devout Muslim areas such as Kano. Spirits are expensive, as are imported wines and beers. Larger hotels and clubs have bars and cocktail lounges, and there are standalone nightspots in most urban areas.

Specialities

• Yam.
• Sweet potatoes.
• Suya (dried barbecued liver and beef on sticks) and kilishi (spiced dried meat).
• In the east, egussi soup (stew of meat, dried fish and melon seeds).
• In the south, goat meat and bush meat (particularly antelope) are considered a delicacy.
• Cassava (Nigeria is the world's largest producer of cassava, and cassava stews and dishes are popular).
• Fufu or sakora (a doughy, starchy dish made from sticky cassava or plantain, used like bread to scoop up soups and sauces).
• Dodo (delicious, fried, caramelised plantain slices, often served at roadside canteens).
• Boli and epa (baked plantains served with peanuts).

Tipping

Unless a service charge has been included, a 10% tip is expected for most services.

Drinking age

The legal drinking age in Nigeria is 18, although in practice this is rarely enforced. Note that in parts of northern Nigeria's Kano state, alcohol is banned.

Regional drinks

• Palm wine (fermented from sap of palm tree, its alcohol content can reach up to 12%, and in some areas it's spiked with other types of alcohol. If you decide to try it, buy it from a producer that you trust).
• Burukutu (locally brewed spirit made from wheat), pito (from corn) and even banana beer.
• Star lager (one of the most famous brands, available in most bars and clubs in most parts of the country, from Abuja to the smallest villages).
• Legend Extra Stout (ales and particularly stouts are popular in Nigeria, and this is one of the best brands).
• Malt drinks (a take on stout beers, minus the alcohol).