North African cafe to open new Norwich site in city centre
- Credit: SIMON FINLAY
A North African cafe is opening its second branch in Norwich to give more people the chance to sample its traditional food and drink.
The owners of Sahara Cafe and Patisserie, on Magdalen Street, have plans to open another premises on St Benedicts Street later this year.
The Magdalen Street cafe, which opened four and a half years ago, will remain in business and will continue to serve North African and Mediterranean cuisine.
Faycal Mokhbi, one of the owners and business partners, said it was always the plan to open in a more city centre location.
'We want to open in the city centre so we can get our food, coffee and traditional cakes to more people,' he said. 'The Magdalen Street cafe is great but in the city you get people from everywhere and we want everyone to experience our subculture.'
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The current cafe serves a wide range of dishes including houmous with fried eggs and date, eggs Benedict with turkey bacon and omelette with feta cheese and red peppers.
Mr Mokhbi, who is originally from Algeria, said the new branch, which is in the building previously occupied by Flint, will serve the same kind of food.
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'The new place will serve similar food and drinks and will have a similar atmosphere,' he said. 'It will also have a North African and Algerian theme.
'The shop on St Benedicts Street just came up and it was at the right time and we got the right deal with the landlord.'
Mr Mokhbi said they will aim to open the St Benedicts Street store by the end of next month but if there are any planning issues from Norwich City Council it may be October.
It comes after another local independent cafe revealed plans to open a second store.
Artel on Wensum Street, which is one of the country's smallest coffee shops, launched a campaign in July to raise £10,000 to open on another branch on London Street in Norwich.
Directors Kieran Harper and Nicole Mitchell raised the money from 96 supporters and have started work on the new cafe which will serve an Australian inspired brunch.
Most things in the coffee shop - which will seat roughly 60 people, compared to just six at its Wensum Street site - will be available to buy, including stools they have designed and some fittings and decorations.