Portland >Food & Dining > Horn of Africa
5237 NE M L King Blvd, Portland, OR | Directions 9721145.561249 -122.661798
Mon-Thu 11am- 10pm; Fri 11am-11pm; Sat 5pm-11pm
Neighborhoods: Northeast Coalition of Neighborhoods, King
Good food if you are willing to wait – The place has nice food... their appetizers (sambusas: both chicken and particularly veggie, bajiya) were really good. The entrees (Lamb with berri berri sauce) was great.
The chicken (with berri berri sauce) was good and the chicken kabob was good as well.
Nothing to complain about the food, it took more than 45 minutes for our order to come (even after the appetizer showed up).
The quantity of the food was also less... one entree is definitely enough.
For the love of god NO! – I had been here before when they were at their old location and it was okay then, not wonderful, but pretty good. The last time I went the service was really horrible. Although the place was empty it took for ever for the waitress to take our order.
Then she brought out samos with meat in them which I didn't discover until I bit into them. I had been really clear that I wanted the veggie, as I'm a vegetarian. After I sent them back she avoided us for the rest of the night. A different waitress had to serve us, and all the food was lousy and over priced.
Awful, awful and awful. – The food was awful, the service terrible.. this restaurant turned what should have been a nice family evening out into a nightmare. The food was so bad we had to drive through for burgers on the way home. I will never, ever eat here again.
Horrible service and completely devoid of any taste! – We arrived at 6:00 and were the only ones there for a while. It still took forever to get our vegetarian food. I have been to many Ethiopian restaurants in the US and I always have been served the vegetarian mix platter very quickly. When it finally arrived, it was missing any and all taste. Regarding the service, I understand there was only one waitress, but I had to get my own napkins and it took 10 minutes for her to get me some more water after I asked. Then she ignored the other glasses on the table! When we tipped appropriately for the level of service we received, she turned super witchy.
Horrible Service and Cold food – Horn of Africa has been inconsistent since its opening. Quality and service would suffer when they would have a booth at the Festivals.
Since moving to the new location it has just gotten bad. The service is horrid. Clueless wait staff. Long long waits when not even 1/3 full wrong food delivered and cold. Female owner needs to learn some manners and people skills when the meal has been a disaster don't dump the check on the table and ignore the problems.
Twice the steam table at lunch was not even on resulting in cold food.
exotic flavors from Africa – I had never really had African food before, so I didn't exactly know what to expect. I was pleasantly surprised. Lots of interesting flavors, textures and smells. I'm basically a vegetarian and there were plenty of options for me. I started with a lentil soup which was hearty and comforting. I was given, on the house, an appetizer pastry called a lentil sambusa. (I guess they're big on lentils.) My server suggested the vegetarian platter, which was excellent. It had navy beans, red lentils (yes, lentils again), collard greens, carrots in some sort of cream sauce and fava beans. Apparently you're supposed to scoop all this stuff up with the squishy-spongey bread called injeera, which was addictive. I had to switch to a fork because I was getting too full on bread! I had a drink called a mango lassi which I liked so much I had another. It was similar to mango smoothies or bubble tea I've had in Asian places. I was too full for dessert so I can't comment on that. Service was friendly and helpful but not overly intrusive. I was visiting Portland from Chicago so I don't know when I'll be back, but I'd gladly go again.
Great Service Great Food – First time to this wonderful place. Everyone at our table has been to Africa and this reminded us of the wonderful people and food we love there. We tried a little bit of everything and were not disappointed with anything. Our waitress was from Uganda, and so personable. We will definately be back to bring a new group of friends and share this little slice of Africa in Portland.
Amazing food, horrible service – My boyfriend and I love North African food and for Christmas I got him a gift certificate to Horn of Africa. We were super excited and upon arrival asked our server for a recommendation of drinks. She brought us two Ethiopian beers. We ordered hummus and Sambuccas for apps. We got the hummus in about 20 minutes. Then continued to wait for another 40 min. When we had been there about an hour the table across from us, got their order although we had been there about 25 minutes longer. Our waiter continued to ignore us and I finally asked the status of our other appetizer. The waitress snapped that they were coming. That is when the table across from us realized that the dinner they ate was not what they ordered. Someone came out from the kitchen and apologized to them and said they would make their order. Still, nothing was said to us but by now it was obvious our dinner had been given away. Finally an hour and half into this experience we got our 2nd app of sambucas although they were not the beef and lentil we ordered they were still delicious. The dipping sauce for them was unbelievably good. When our entrees came, there was no apology or acknowledgement about the mistake, or wait time. The lamb curry was very good although not spicy like I had requested, it probably was the first time they had cooked it. My boyfriend's dish was lamb with beri beri sauce and was average. The dishes were served with bideen bread although the menu said we could have bideen or saffron basmati rice, our server didn't offer it. We asked for our check and that was the only thing that came to the table quickly, then the server returned while I was still signing the credit slip and waited for it. The funny thing is, when we arrived there was a couple sitting, looking very unhappy, asking about their food. When they got it they ate in 5 min, and quickly left. We thought, wow, what rude people, 2 hours later, we were in their shoes. Such a disappointment because we would love to return for the food. Even with the poor service, if our waitress had apologized or admitted the mistake or anything, we would have been fine and happy to wait. I used to be a server years ago and I know mistakes can happen but to be ignored and spoken rudely to for 2 hours is enough reason to never return.
I can't believe the favorable reviews – The worst dining experience I have had in years.
Server was uninformed about what was in the dishes. A "vegeterian platter" is on the menu and listed at a "variable" price -- but she couldn't tell us which items were in it or how much it cost this evening. She went to ask and then someone else (owner? chef?) came to our table to make suggestions.
We opted for the buffet at his suggestion. But every single item was a disappointment - and some were so awful that we simply decided to leave.
Add in he lack of decor (wooden tables with no tablecloths; bright "security" type lights glaring from outside into the glass front of the restaurant) and an uncomfortably chilly dining room, this place is a wonder -- wonder how the devil it has so many favorable reviews.
Fabulous Food! – This a unique "Ethiopian" restaurant that stands out among the many different Ethiopian offerings available throughout Portland. This restaurant blends spices and flavors from the geographic region that includes the Horn of Africa, the Middle East and India, to create complex flavors that are delicious and refreshing.
If you are new to this cuisine, try the lunch buffet or better still, the Sunday dinner buffet! You'll be able to sample most everything from the menu, and creative innovations from the Chef.
The restaurant has moved to a beautiful new location at 5237 NE MLK Blvd/Vanport Plaza. It is a family friendly place, and even offers a party room for private events.
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