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Meskerem Ethiopian Cuisine

Map & Directions
(17 Reviews)

124 Macdougal St, New York, NY 10012

(212) 777-8111

Today: 12:00 pm - 12:00 am
Tomorrow: 12:00 pm - 12:00 am
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Regular Hours

Payment method
all major credit cards, amex, discover, master card, visa
Price Range
Downtown Manhattan, Greenwich Village
African Restaurants, Caterers, Take Out Restaurants, Breakfast, Brunch & Lunch Restaurants, Family Style Restaurants, Restaurants
Other Information

Parking: Street

Wi-Fi: No

Bike Parking: Yes

Attire: Casual

Good For Groups: Yes

Wheelchair Accessible: No

Cuisines: African, Caterers, Family Style, Take Out, Breakfast, Brunch & Lunch

Takes Reservations: No

Outdoor Seating: No

Price Range : Average


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Provided by Citysearch - 
Only one critique ...

They don't deliver! Which is probably a good thing or I would order delivery every single night from them, and probably eventually (after 5 years) get tired of their food. I personally think this is some of the best Ethiopian food around. I've eaten at 5 different Ethiopian restaurants in my life and this one really keeps me coming back for more. It's too bad the ambiance isn't a bit better, but honestly, the food is so good I'd eat it on the sidewalk in the rain if I had to!!!



Provided by Citysearch - 
Worst Ethiopian food

I met a friend here last weekend. I am a regular at the 47th Street Meskerem so I thought the downtown location will be just as good. I couldn't have been more wrong. The injera was dry and yellow. I have never seen injera so yellow---there is NO way that was fresh. We ordered the Veggie combo and the Miser wat. Well whatever they gave me, it wasn't miser wat. It was tasteless, dry, and did not have the unique berbere flavour. We had to beg the server for water (isn't she supposed to check our glasses regularly? we were the only customers there). I liked the artwork on the walls, but that's about the only positive thing about this place.
I'm so confused as to why the 47th street location is so superior both in decor, service, and food. Aren't they owned by the same people? How is this place still in business?



Provided by Citysearch - 
SOOO good!!

The food here is incredible. I went with a small group of friends, most of us trying Ethiopian for the first time. There's a ton of food to pick from. I highly recomment the Vegetarian Combo. My friends and I can't stop talking about it! The restaurant is very small, so I would avoid going there with a large group. But if you're in the mood for Ethiopian, this is a must.



Provided by Citysearch - 
better to go elsewhere

the food is here NOT fresh. whoever I have recommended this place too has felt ill after eating there. the 47th street one is MUCH better. the food is yummier and fresher. this is a small stuffy place where the food isnt even that good.



Provided by Citysearch - 
poor service

I was reminded again why i have not been to this place in 3 years.. i was there earlier today with my friends (4 of us) and we ordered 2 appetizers and instead of getting the small entrees we aked for 2 combo... the server argued with us for 10 mins on why we have to get 3 entrees min. between 4 people (i tried explaining to her that the 2 combos is exactly the same cost as 3 small entrees... which she was not happy with) - finally we got our 2 combos and assured her we'll get anpther entree after we figure what more we'd want. she finally agreed adn we did order the 3rd entree later. I was just mad with the attitude and the faces she was making,,, and finally when she got the check - she had the nerve to add 20% gratuity...
i'd stick to the Meskerem in Hell's kitchen.. staff is friendly and the food is fresher..



Provided by Citysearch - 
Stay Away

If you like Ethiopian food, this is not the place to go. If you like canned cat food, this might be for you. It's overpriced (like everything on Macdougal street, which should generally be avoided), portions were very small, the service was lacking, the lamb was all bone, Doro Wat was a just a small drumstick and a hard boiled egg, Chicken Tibs was slightly edible, but didn't make up for the rest of the food.



Provided by Citysearch - 
Terrific food, horrendous service

I often meet friends at Meskerem because the kitfo and tibs are out of this world. We love the atmosphere and the location, and it's quickly becoming a tradition for us. However, the last three times we have dined at Meskerem, the service has been appalling--even insulting. We've had the same server for the past three visits, and each time she has been rude, forgetful, and downright snippy. She forgets to put in orders, leaves parts of them out (and our orders are very simple), and forgets drinks entirely. It's hard for me to understand why this happens, as we're easy customers who are pleasant and tip well. I do love Meskerem and would like to continue dining there, but that waitress has got to go. If you're there, avoid the lady with the pinned-up hair and nose ring--trust me!



Provided by Citysearch - 
great icebreaker

the food is delicious here, but the servers sometimes have a very nonchalant attitude toward customers. the first time i was here was about 5 or 6 years ago, and i remember it always being crowded. now its always empty (at least it is every time i pass by or eat here), perhaps its because of the snotty, un-attentive attitude given off by employees.

like i said, the food is great. you get a lot for your money. this is a good place to take a first date... having to eat with your hands serves an icebreaker, while the neighborhood is inviting and lively.

awesome dishes for those who enjoy spicy food too!



Provided by Citysearch - 

I went here for the first time last night. The seating was prompt, but cramped. The decor was . . . well, there wasn't really any decor. From our table, we had a view of two glass display cases literally filled with junk (empty shopping bags, crumpled sweaters--perhaps it was the lost and found?). The food seemed pretty good at first, but the overwhelmingly sour taste of the injera (the crepes with which you eat the food) soon left me longing for a fork, so that I could taste something other than the bitter, vinegary flavor in the crepe. Also, the spice level was not what I desired. I'd intentionally avoided ordering one of the few dishes labeled ""mild,"" but the Miser Wat turned out to be quite bland. In addition, the place appears to have lost its liqor license, so ignore the advertisements of Ethopian beer on the menu outside. Inside, the menus have a notice that it's BYOB now--with a $7 bottle fee. After out plates had been cleared, we waited for the check, which they seemed disinclined to bring us, despite the folks waiting for a table. Finally, we were able to flag down our server and pay. Overall, a sour experience.



Provided by Citysearch - 
Good Ethiopian standby

This location (there's another on 47th) is more cramped, but has fairly quick service because of the limited space and the NYU locale. The food is pretty standard Ethiopian, and this is an affordable place to start for the uninitiated. I've always had good service here, and my friends and I try to visit every few months.



Provided by Citysearch - 

The food is uninspiring, the menu is meager, and the decor is nonexistent.



Provided by Citysearch - 
Frustrating extra costs

I love the food at this place and used to go fairly regularly. However. the last few times I have been there, I have been really frustrated by strange new requirements that raise my bill. Two times I have been in a party of three and was told that 3 people cannot split the vegetarian sampler - we needed to order 2 samplers. When the food came out, there was no more food than there would have been in a single sampler - certainly enough for 3 people - but we were charged twice as much. In a party of 4, I was told that we had to buy a larger bottle of wine since there were 4 of us drinking. I'm trying a different place next time I want Ethiopian food.



Provided by Citysearch - 
Something Different

If you want to try something new and exotic, go here. My friends and I from Long Island never had Ethiopian cuisine and it was a very interesting experiance!

There is a sink in the back, so wash your hands because they are your eating utensils!

I Highly rccommend the Sambosa appetizer. Can be with beef or lentils (I'm a vegetarian. I had a lot of choices here). Not so spicey.

Food was spicey and eaten with the traditonal bread that is sour.

Three of us ate each an entree and shared one appetizer for 51 $

The room is small, quiet, not crowded, and dimly lit with candles and green and red string lights on the walls.

I enjoyed it but it's not for everyone though.



Provided by Citysearch - 
Eating with my hands was the best part

Try not to kill yourself walking down the stairs into this restaurant. And I hope you're a party of 2 or 4, any other denomination and the hostess is completely baffled. Nonetheless, we ordered the Lentil Sambosa to start, the sauce they give you is excellent. We then ordered Gomen Besaega, Doro Wat, and Special Tibs. My problems really began here - the chicken dish was literally two tiny drumsticks and a hard boiled egg in sauce for $12.95. The beef was overcooked. The lamb was tough as leather. The servers - although very beautiful! - were not very attentive or helpful. The worst of it was when it became busy and our server dropped the check without asking us if there was anything else we'd like, then proceeded to ask us twice if we were ""almost done because there are people waiting for your table."" What a disappointment.



Provided by Citysearch - 
A quiet, affordable little heaven

Meskerem is a tidy little eatery that I visit for lunch every once in a while. I have religiously ordered the doro wot, although I'll push myself to sample some of their other fare the next time I drop by. Their doro wot is certainly worth your while, with its sweet purees and airy mounds of injera stacked one on top of the other. Although it's intimate, I'm not sure how condusive to romance it is. Give it a shot anyway. Excellent, though slightly standoffish, service.



Provided by Citysearch - 
Great Ethiopian

The food here is excellent, and I get my fix regularly. Each dish is flavorful and distinctive, which is something I can't say for other Ethiopian placed I've tried. It's also a great value -- the $13.50 combo is perfect for two! The appetizers (mostly salad-like) aren't too exciting, but they serve to balance out the hot and spicy richness of the entrees. The ambiance is fine, nothing special, though the fireplace is a great touch in the winter.



Provided by Citysearch - 
Great food, good prices, great fun.

A dark, cozy basement restaurant in the heat of the Village. The food here is amazing. The prices are more than fair. Come hungry, ready to literally dig in (no utensils, you eat with your hands). They offer serveral bottles of wine between $20-$25. Perfect place for a some great food and great conversation.

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