Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Southwest >
Feb 22, 2014 07:08 AM

Incredible Ethiopian Food near I-10! Tuscon

We stumbled upon this jewel of a restaurant and were so grateful. Meal was delicious and atmosphere was calm and relaxed (good thing since we were road-weary and grubby). If we lived nearby, I would eat here every week - just amazing food.

Zeman's Too
119 E. Speedway Blvd
Tucson, AZ 85705
(520) 882-4955

-from the east, it was exit 257 off I-10 (I think the sign said 'Historical Tuscon') - turn right onto Speedway, drive 3/4 of a mile and it is on the left side of the street, in a small white house.

We had the spicy red lentil dish, a milder yellow split pea dish with vegies, a mixed vegetable dish (yetakelt wat), and spinach dish - all were fantastic. I am definitely inspired to try to learn to make at least one of these dishes. From one sampler and one entree, we had enough food for two hungry travelers in addition to another meal at home. Great place - hope you get a chance to enjoy it!

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. We were just in town and stopped by Zemam's for dinner, definitely enjoyed our meal. Several of us ordered samplers, which meant we were able to try close to a dozen different dishes.

    Nothing was the best I've had, but everything was quite good, and especially welcome given that we don't have any Ethiopian restaurants where we live in NM. As best as we could tell the food was made in batches in advance (it would be tough to do otherwise with such a large menu and a relatively small restaurant). Highlights were the yemisir kay wat (red lentils), cauliflower with peppers and garbanzo, and gored-gored (beef with red chile). The injera was pretty good, again not quite the best I've had.

    Friendly people running the restaurant, reasonable prices, definitely a good all-around experience.

    1. I lived in Tucson for close to 30 years before moving to Prescott 6 years ago, so I was around when Zemam's opened but never ate there. We recently took a trip down with a friend who was excited about the prospect of eating Ethiopian food -- and I have to say I'm sorry I waited so long. We ate at the Broadway location and it was fantastic. Were the first ones there right after it opened on a Sunday, but by the time we left it was packed. Will now have a new dining priority (other than Sonoran Mexican) when we go to Tucson.