Last Friday night, Alex and I decided it was about time we ventured out for a meal, after weeks of skulking around the house, moaning and groaning about colds and what-not. I’d successfully used Trip Advisor to help us chose restaurants to eat at on a recent trip to Berlin, so thought I’d give it a go to pick somewhere to eat in London. My choice was unusually quick and easy for me – I saw a review by a Facebook friend and within five minutes of searching, opted for Zeret Kitchen in Camberwell, London.
Zeret Kitchen is an Ethiopian restaurant surrounded by a concrete jungle of high rise buildings. Some may say ‘a bit of a dodgy part of town’, but I say, ‘who cares, just be aware, keep your head down and you’ll be fine’! We’re not talking a flashy-design interior here… Just a modern, clean and nicely lit room, with a cosy atmosphere.
I’d never eaten Ethiopian food before and was really looking forward to the new experience. We arrived for an early ish dinner at 7pm and there were only a few tables taken at that time, however it did get a bit busier towards the end of our meal. Traditional music was playing and we were greeted by a really friendly waiter who did an amazing job of looking after us during our visit.
On our journey to Zeret Kitchen, I had done a bit of research, so we knew a bit more about what to expect i.e. eating with our fingers and sharing dishes amongst the table. The recommendation was to go for the house special to share, which is what we did – I think we ate a combination of the following: Kitfo (minced raw beef, marinated in mitmita, Lega Tibs (lamb ), yebeg fitfit (spicy lamb stew with vegetables), spiced chicken tibs gomen, shuro and salad – All of this was served on a round of injera bread – A fermented sour and spongy flat bread. We were also given extra rolls of the bread, but as bread can be so filling (and because I’m not really meant to eat it) I chose to eat a lot of the dishes without. Finger lickin’ messy, but fun!
How was it? Well, I have to say I absolutely loved every single dish that I ate. It wasn’t quick to arrive, but we were more than content waiting with our nice glass of (cheap) white wine and Ethiopian beer… Why are people always in such a rush when they are dining out anyway? My favourite dish was whichever vegetable dish that came on our plate (I didn’t catch all the names – sorry). I have to say that it was the most delcious meal I’ve eaten in quite some time. Maybe that was because a lot of the flavours were new to me, but I have a feeling the chef in this place really knows what he/she is doing.
A lot of the dishes had a spicy kick to them, but If I could manage it then I’m sure pretty much anyone can. I read in someone’s review that you can also ask for extra chilli if you do so dare! I’d say head to the Top Table menu here for a bit more of a detailed description of all the dishes, and hot-foot it to Zeret as soon as you can. Don’t worry about the location – It was perfectly fine and we found a safe spot to park in very close by. Our total bill came to only £32 with two wines, a beer and a bottle of water included.
We’ll, be going back, that’s for sure!
Zeret Kitchen – 216-218 Camberwell Rd, London SE5 0ED
Tony’s cafe is actually the take away section for Zeret – It appears they must have expanded at some stage.