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“Very authentic, very filling, very very good.” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Semhar

Semhar
Marnixstraat 259, Amsterdam, The Netherlands (Jordaan)
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Ranked #96 of 2,411 Restaurants in Amsterdam
Price range: $15 - $22
Cuisines: Ethiopian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Neighborhood: Jordaan
Manchester, United Kingdom
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
“Very authentic, very filling, very very good.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 27, 2014

Really positive, warm atmosphere. Prices were reasonable for Amsterdam, an the food was bloody lovely. Very filling, very sociable meals, with good vegetarian options available if you're that way inclined. Came away stuffed and feeling very satisfied.

  • Visited April 2014
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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86 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    49
    30
    7
    0
    0
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Amsterdam
Top Contributor
90 reviews 90 reviews
47 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 35 cities Reviews in 35 cities
36 helpful votes 36 helpful votes
“Deeply satisfying”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 6, 2014

We have had quite a few meals in this Ethopian restuarant. Often together with a lot of friends and at least with all family members present. And very time it was a joy. Vegetarian options are excellent. A meal consists of a large plate with a varity of food. Lentils, stewed beef, a range of vegetable dishes, cheese. That comes with delicious pancakes you use to swoop up the food with your fingers. The food can be quite spicy. If you are not into that mention it whn ordering and they will take care of that. Good with kids too.
Desert is yoghurt or dat pie, but there is ice cream which is less than authentic but excellent and perhaps the best cooling down option.
Highly recommended!

  • Visited April 2014
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Hannover, Germany
Top Contributor
61 reviews 61 reviews
61 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 25 cities Reviews in 25 cities
85 helpful votes 85 helpful votes
“Delicious Eritrean / Ethiopian food”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 1, 2014

The Semhar is conveniently located in Marnixstraat (not far from the Anne Frank Huis) with a canal view on one side (tables in the back) and a street view on the other side. The restaurant is cozy and has a warm feel. The staff is very friendly and attentive. If you are in pairs or a bigger group I can highly recommend to share a big platter with a variety of spicy stews (with or without meat) and vegetables. The enjera (sourdough pancakes) are excellent. The food is eaten with the hands. This is done by tearing off a piece of enjera, using it to grab some food, and putting it directly in your mouth. If you run out of enjera and there is still food left on your plate, you will get extra enjera free of charge. One important remark: If you’re not into spicy food, this is probably not your kind of place. Make sure to the try the exotic beers (amongst other coconut and banana) as eel as the Ethiopian-style coffee. You won't`t be disappointed.

  • Visited September 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Top Contributor
56 reviews 56 reviews
37 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
43 helpful votes 43 helpful votes
“Ethiopian can never be bad...”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 25, 2014

and this certainly is not either. But it is more expensive than the other places in Amsterdam, and doesn't offer anything extra. So if you want good Ethiopian restaurant - try Addis Ababa - why overpay?

  • Visited February 2014
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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Lincoln, United Kingdom
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“An interesting experience.”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 20, 2013

Dining at Semhar was an interesting experience. Completely new to Ethiopian food we went on the suggestion of a printed guide. The advice was to book in advance but we took a chance. It was a very rainy Saturday night and the place wasn't too busy.

We were welcomed warmly and our waitress explained the dishes. We had a mixed platter accompanied by Ethiopian beer. My wife's beer was a fruity one and mine was strong (7%) and tasty. The food was delicious and varied, accompanied by Ethiopian 'pancakes.' Some of the choices were described as 'hot' on the menu. I would compare these to a 'Madras' in Indian terms, nothing hotter.

Everywhere was clean, including the toilets (often a disappointment in ethnic restaurants) and we would definitely return and highly recommend it to carnivores and vegetarians alike.

I didn't mention it but I would have liked to listened to some indigenous music instead of easy-listening electronica. Maybe next time...

  • Visited October 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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