Asmara - Post Report Question and Answers

What typical restaurants, food delivery services, and/or takeout options are popular among expatriates?

There is almost no food delivery. Most restaurants offer very similar menus, mostly Eritrean and Italian dishes (with some global staples like sandwiches.) There is one place that does Indian and Chinese food, though don't go looking for the most authentic experience there. I've heard tell there is Middle Eastern available, but I've not been there. Expect to cook a lot at home. (Note: During COVID, ALL of these have been shut down. It seems they're about to start opening, though.) - Apr 2021

Roof Garden-- Chinese/Indian restaurant, run by a Nepalese chef (so temper your expectations for authenticity). Lots of other good restaurants (Silver Star, Ghibabo, Qategna, etc.) that serve vaguely internationalish food and local food. Local food is very good, overall. There are no delivery services. Not much takeout either, however, there is EXCELLENT coffee all over town. Possibly an Asmarino's favorite pastime is sitting with friends, drinking macchiatos. - Dec 2019

There are a good half-dozen or so restaurants in Asmara routinely frequented by internationals. Probably the best (and most expensive, at $15-25 per entree) is an Indian/Chinese restaurant known as Roof Garden. There's a good handful of places that provide pretty good Italian food and/or Eritrean cuisine, as well as general "international" cuisine, such as steaks, hamburgers, seafood, etc. There's a place that makes pretty good brick over pizzas. Seafood comes up fresh from the port of Masawa for the better restaurants or you can order for yourself if you get to know one of the guys who bring it up from Masawa. Food delivery services aren't available, but takeout is an option from many places. Also, day or overnight trips down to Masawa (~two hours from Asmara) feature excellent fresh-caught seafood meals. Some of the popular places include: Ghibabo (Eritrean, Italian & international in a great setting) El Sycomoro (Italian) Roof Garden (Indian/Chinese) Silver Star (modern cuisine in an art-filled dining room) Family pizza/pasta Mar Rossa (Ertirean) Ghirmay (really good Eritrean traditional cuisine in an Eritrean house setting) A couple of restaurants in the Expo fair grounds whose names I don't remember The Asmara Palace hotel has several restaurants and an Irish pub, but honestly I haven't eaten there yet. - Feb 2019

There are a few restaurants: Eritrean food, Italian, Indian, Chinese, Yemenese..ok. No delivery. For take-away you will pay separately for the box. Coffee places are where you see people, not really restaurants. There is an outdoor cafe every few blocks. Local beer is pretty good, so also an option. - Sep 2018

There are only a handful of restaurants. With a western palate, none of them are like home. Most people cook and eat in. I found eating out to simply be too expensive. If you go to Roof Garden, which is an Indian/Chinese cuisine, there is great ambiance, but dinner could run you 700 Nakfa per person very easily. There are no "true" fast food places and no delivery places. You can do take out at the available restaurants. We would eat out a couple times per month, just to get out of the house.

Honestly, the local food was much better than most of the restaurants. When we ate out we would generally eat pizza or fish cooked in red chili sauce. - Dec 2016

There are a few restaurants serving decent traditional food, as well as Italian, Chinese, and Lebanese. There are a couple of good pizza places. Cafes and pastry shops abound, where one can get good coffee and pastries for pennies. - Aug 2007

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