Selam Ethiopian & Eritrean Cuisine

5494 Central Florida Pkwy, Orlando
(407) 778-3119

Recent Reviews

Sarah Wahltinez

Come here to try something new and amazing! The staff are attentive and can help you if you're not familiar with menu items. The food is high quality and delicious. They have live music some nights - definitely want to check that out after quarantine.

kevin hart

You want an authentic exotic experience? This is the place too eat, all food is made fresh and no forks or knives for you friends. That's right eat with the hands GOD gave you folks, on a large platter for you and your date. (Forks and knives are available for the faint of heart) why bother going if not for the full experience?

funsizemy

Stopped by for lunch and it was such a pleasant experience!!! We loved the samosas so much! The veggie special is HUGE so be prepared to eat. For the coffee we recommend drinking it straight and without sweetener.

Tiffany Davis

My friends and I wanted to check out some local spots and we stumbled across this place. We were definitely excited to try it. The hostess was very helpful, she explained stuff on the menu that we didn’t understand. And the food was very good! It was a new experience especially eating with our hands lol. All in all a great experience that I’m excited to try again.

Crystal A

This is a must do in Orlando! I thought I had eaten good food until I decided to try Selam last year. I didnt have a clue what to order, but the owner was so helpful in making my selections, and was just a fun person to talk with. He demonstrated how to eat the dishes with my hands, and my husband enjoyed the coffee ritual. The food was out of this world amazing, the restaurant was impeccably clean, and the portions were generous. We’ve made several trips to Orlando since then, and this is ALWAYS our first stop for dinner. They have awesome vegetarian options, and the best Samosas I’ve ever eaten. If you are thinking about trying this place, STOP THINKING AND GO EAT THERE! It’s really that good. Everything is fresh and can be customized to suit your dietary needs and preferences. The food quality is consistent—we’ve never been disappointed with our orders.

War Beagle

First time having Ethiopian food and it was very good. I got the three meat dish. The spicy beef stew is excellent. Definitely get the ethiopian coffee be cause it is outstanding. They bring it with some incense.

Suzanne G.

We never ate Ethiopian cuisine and decided to give it a try after reading all the reviews. This was a risk because we were celebrating our 33rd wedding Anniversary and wanted it to be really good. Selma did not disappoint. The server was very courteous and took time to explain everything to us. We ordered the appetizers which were little flaky crested meat/lentil pies. To say yummy is an understatement. I ordered the vegetable sampler for my entree and husband ordered the same but with meat, The portions were huge! We could have shared(as the server suggested) but didn't. Everything was fantastic. I did not care for the collards, not their fault I just don't like them, but everything else was great. My favorite is still the red lentils. Nice and reasonably priced wine selection. HIGHLY RECOMMEND!!!!

Jose

The best customer service I have ever seen. I forgot my credit card at my hotel and the owner let me take the food with me and call back with payment. To have that kind of trust nowadays is amazing. They’ve gained a customer for life anytime I’m in the area. Not to mention the beef was amazing. The spices are like nothing you’ve ever tasted before unless you’ve had it.

Crystal Anthony

This is a must do in Orlando! I thought I had eaten good food until I decided to try Selam last year. I didnt have a clue what to order, but the owner was so helpful in making my selections, and was just a fun person to talk with. He demonstrated how to eat the dishes with my hands, and my husband enjoyed the coffee ritual. The food was out of this world amazing, the restaurant was impeccably clean, and the portions were generous. We’ve made several trips to Orlando since then, and this is ALWAYS our first stop for dinner. They have awesome vegetarian options, and the best Samosas I’ve ever eaten. If you are thinking about trying this place, STOP THINKING AND GO EAT THERE! It’s really that good. Everything is fresh and can be customized to suit your dietary needs and preferences. The food quality is consistent—we’ve never been disappointed with our orders.

My Dao N.

Stopped by for lunch and it was such a pleasant experience!!! We loved the samosas so much! The veggie special is HUGE so be prepared to eat. For the coffee we recommend drinking it straight and without sweetener.

Rajeev Thomas

Gracious host! He welcomed us in and he was well spoken, charming and professional.We loved the food and the place. Beef dishes here were so flavorful. Loved the injera bread. I could eat another platter after one platter! Lentils were so well done, so flavorful with cumin,tomatoes. We could taste lots of spices in the dishes. We didn’t care for the samosas, mainly because of our personal bias, we are used to the Indian Samosas. Ethiopian lentil samosas are something you need to get used to. The best part of the visit was the TV/Display with a crackling fire during Christmas in Florida. That really created a holiday feel for us. We were missing the Christmas feeling in Florida and this clever set up gave us that holiday feel. We surely will be back when we are in vacation again...

Luis M.

Omg this place is awesome! My first time trying Ethiopian food was in South Africa a few months ago and I absolutely loved it. Me and my husband wanted to try something different for our anniversary and we both thought about this place and boy we made a good choice. By far the best food I've had in a long time. We tried the honey wine and it was nice and sweet. We order the a platter if the mixed beef and some veggies. It was s the perfect amount for 2 people. We left full. We wanted to try dessert but we were to full. Can't wait to come back and try other things... I definitely recommend this place.

Kyle Jacobs

Great experience. We had never tried Ethiopian food but love trying new things. The employees were very helpful and guided us through the menu with great suggestions. We would definitely recommend it and would come back if we lived here. Now I have to find some Ethiopian food at home.

Annika Olsen

Excellent food and great service! The combo plates say they serve two so my party ordered appetizers as well, but the combo plate was more than enough so we had far too much food. It was all so so good though.

Ashley Ariaga

If you're feeling adventurous I recommend trying out Ethiopian food at selam. The samosas are a must! The platters are an easy go to for those first time trying.

Deena S.

This restaurant does live up to it's hype. The food is delicious and the servIce is attentive and accommodating. My husband and I shared a Selam Veggie Speciall. It was so good, we finished every last bite. Our friends shared a Cornis prepared for two people and liked it very much. We all had their special herbal hot tea, I don't remember what type it was. At the end one friend ordered the coffee ceremony. They roast their own coffee and bring out the beans at each phase of the process. I had a sip and it was delicious.

Christine S.

Glad I finally got to try this place and catch up wiTh an old friend! Warda, this was a wonderful dinner, thank you for setting up this gIrls night out! We came in around 5:15p on a Saturday night and it was dead. The servers came over and explained the menu and different cultures. The staff were very friendly and helpful with explaining and sharing their culture. I got the Ethiopian Honey wine, and Warda got the hot tea. The honey wine was sweet and delicious! The tea comes brewed weak, with a tea bag on the side to steep longer if you want. We started the meal with the samosas. Thank you Warda for getting these! The were delicious! Filled with cooked lentils and paired with a delicious sauce (wish I knew what was in it)! We decided to get the vegetarian dish a add a side of doro tibs (chicken breast in spices). The meal was delicious and very filling! There is plenty on the dish for two people and more! The only thing I didn't like was the looooong wait for a server to come check on us. I believe its a cultural thing. Easily fixed by going to the bar anD asking for the check. Please don't let that dissuade you from trying this amazing food!

T V R.

The decor was very nice. The service was very very slooow. It took them thirty minutes to get our appetizers order and take the order for our drink after they served us our appetizers. The main course took a whole hour and fifteen minutes to come out of the kitchen. The meat samosa appetizer was good. Zilzil beef tips were tough a cut of beef. The veggie combination platter was satisfactory and needed a touch of salt for my taste. By the end of the meal, we decided that this was our last visit mainly due to the very slow service. The food was OK.

Faith B.

If you're in Orlando and love trying new foods, this is a must! Came across yelps list of top 100 restaurants to visit in 2020, and seeing the previous reviews and knowing a trip to Orlando was coming up, I knew I had to visit Selam Ethiopian & Eritrean Cuisine. A little ways away from the hustle and bustle of I-Drive and tucked away in a shopping plaza by Seaworld hides a real treasure of Ethiopian food and culture. We were greeted by Abraham, a very passionate owner who truly made our visit a 5+ star experience. From the way he welcomed us in and thanked us for coming, his explanation of our meal and it's components, a beautiful coffee ceremony and even a short lesson on Ethiopian ingredients and how the traditional bread, Injera, is made, truly showcased his pride and eagerness for others to learn about his culture. Onto the food, another 5+ star experience. Seeing as no one in our party (of three) have had Ethiopian food before, we weren't sure what to expect, but we knew would be delicious from the spice and aromas in the air. We started with an order of lentil samosas and chicken samosas; both served fresh and piping hot with a crisp and crunchy exterior and an extremely flavorful filling. Shortly after, our main dish arrived. We decided to split the veggie special (The menu notes that the plate is for 2+ people and as you can see from the pictures, the three of us had plenty of leftovers for snacks later.) We all thoroughly enjoyed each component of the platter, but my favorites were the Shiro (spiced split pea purée) and the Atkilt Wot (cabbage/potato/carrot mixture). To finish off what already seemed like the perfect meal, we enjoyed the traditional Ethiopian coffee ceremony (make sure to let them know you'll be doing this when you first order, as they roast the coffee beans fresh). It was at this time Abraham came back to visit us again and shared with us some spices that altered the already delicious coffee so that we could explore different notes and flavors of it. It was truly a unique experience. We look forward to future visits to enjoy the amazing food and hospitality of Abraham and the rest of the Selam team.

Angel R.

OMG! This place is nothing short of amazing. My first experience with Ethiopian food was at a highly recommended restaurant in South Africa. The food here is certainly comparable to what I experienced overseas. All familiar flavors and table setting with a hands on meal experience. The menu was slightly confusing but the servers (who I believe are also the owners) were more than helpful with narrowing down our choices. They recommended some drinks to try. My husband got a glass of Pinotage while i tried a traditional Ethiopian honey wine. Both were delicious. The honey wine was certainly on the sweet side, the complete opposite of what I usually order, but i enjoyed it. We decided to get a single beef meal (zilzil tibs) and a combination platter of food to split between two people. The amount of food was perfect for two people while giving us a rather large variety of options to try. Everything served to us was good stuff. We passed on dessert and after dinner drinks because we were too full. I'd definitely save space for coffee next time. It smelled and looked delicious based on what I saw on neighboring tables.

Nam N.

I love Ethiopian food and have tried it in almost every city I go to, but Selam is better than all of them. Yes, somehow this family run restaurant is better than all thE big and fancy Ethiopian restaurants in DC, NYC, LA, Toronto, and all those big cities. The service is amazing. After coming every week for a few months, not only do they know our name, our order, and palate, but they make connections and conversation with us. I always over-order because Ethiopian food leftovers as breakfast the next day is an underrated haven I wish I knew about earlier. The QUALITY of the food though is amazing! I don't really like lamb because it can be gamey and not up my alley, but their lamb dishes are all amazing. I especially love gomen and their beef rib special. The stewed lentils are also delicious, mild but somehow so flavorful. Pictures don't do it justice at all. Ethiopian food should be your go-to dinner idea. Are you still reading this and deciding where to go? It's here. This is where you need to eat. I happily make the 45 minute drive to Selam as frequently as possible because yes, it's worth it!!

Liv M.

The reviews don't lie, this is a quality restaurant. When you walk in you are greeted and made to feel at home, then offered the choice between a traditional or modern table. Today my brother and I had the vegetable platter and two cups of steaming hot tea. The tea base is a mixture of cardamom, cinnamon, and cloves I believe that you can add a caffeinated plain tea bag to if you choose. I went without the caffeine and enjoyed the hot herbal drink. The vegetable platter comes with generous serving sizes of all the dishes on a big round of injera topped with more rolled injera for serving. Everything was delicious! The only two portions we left uneaten were too spicy and not a personal preference of vegetable. Summary: Service- Excellent Food Quality- Wonderful Cleanliness- Sparkling Atmosphere- Cozy Value- A bit pricey but good value for what you pay

Matthew C.

When passing by the restaurant it doesn't seem like much but it is indeed a hidden gem. The service was amazing. Our servers answered all of our questions and went above and beyond the expectation to satisfy our needs. I would highly recommend the mini habesha ceremony (coffee ceremony) the coffee was nothing like I have ever had and I would definitely come back. Our food was served promptly and had a lot of different flavors. This was our first time trying Ethiopian cuisine and it was definitely a great experience.

Joe S.

After reading reviews of this place, I was excited to try it. I have had Ethiopian food many moons ago and was excited by the reviews of the veggie platter for 2 with a combination of all of their veggie dishes. Upon walking in to the large dining room, there were lots of openings and we were promptly seated. The tables were covered with a table cloth and then the plastic/vinyl covering which gave the restaurant a bit of tackiness. Having the thick plastic rest on your legs and move the napkin around on your lap or leg wasn't pleasant. Nothing major, just a bit of an observation. The lentil samosa was delicious. They were piping hot where we had to wait a bit to eat it, and they stayed hot to the last bite. The sauce added a nice spice, however, it was a bit difficult to dip. I guess this is a eat with your hands place, so we made it work. If there's one thing I know how to do, it's get food from a plate to my mouth by whatever means necessary. I will say the pictures are spot on with what you get. It's presented beautifully. There were 8 items presented with a small salad in the middle. Some items were great and some were OK. There wasn't anything I didn't like, but nothing really stood out other than the Red Lentils. This was the only item that was bursting with flavor and was absolutely delicious. Eating was a challenge. The waiter gave a demonstration of how to eat the food by ripping a piece of bread and grabbing the food with it. He brought out his own small plate to demonstrate and didn't grab our food. It looked easy. Luckily, they have a sink outside of the restrooms which you may need to use before and after eating. Other than the appetizer and the minuscule amount of lettuce, the meal lacked texture. Everything was soft and mushy. With all of that being said, I give the food 4 stars. It was decent, presented beautifully, and very abundant! Where the restaurant failed to me was the service. It seems hit or miss based on the reviews and I guess we were there on a miss. It wasn't overly crowded, but water refills were few and far between. We were not offered utensils which would have been helpful. It also took a while to get our check even after asking. I'd give a 2 for service. They were friendly, but just scarce. If I was in the area, I might give it another try now that I know the items I liked. Hopefully, they can improve the service or at least get it consistent as other reviewers didn't have the same experience.

Huong L.

We came here with pretty high expectations and was let down, so kinda bummed. This place was listed on yelp's 100 top restaurant and since we were in the area, we decided to check it out. Maybe we are spoiled by the abundance of ethiopian restaurants in Seattle, but this place wasn't anything exceptional. Service was mixed: we came in around 3pm and was the only guests there. Our server, Abraham, was nice and educate us on the cuisine and how to eat and things like that, so it is nice. However, service was pretty slow. We stayed at the restaurant for about 2 hours when 1 hour of it was just waiting (either for food or for our server to come by to give us the bill. Food wise, it was ok. We ordered the meat and veggie combo platter as well as the lamb dish. The plate was beautifully organized and Abraham showed us what each item was. General consensus was that teh veggies was bland and need flavor. We couldn't really tell what each was. The meat had some flavor but was just ok. The star was probably the lamb. It was tender, juicy and had the most flavor. The injera was also nice as it's not as sour as most places we have been to. Portion wise, it was ok, kinda pricey for what we got. we paid around $50 for the plate... Overall, it was ok, maybe if we never had ethiopian food before it would have been a better experience.

Emil Gonter

An interesting place. The food was different. We ordered meat combination platter but was not happy with our choice. It was very eclectic and cannot understand what we are eating. I preferred getting one kind food instead. Also the plates for two people was not as large as two single person platter. We ordered a single platter but they put it within the combination platter, this made it a small portion. Financially canny but I was not happy. But the taste of the food was good mostly.

Amy K.

This place is amazing!! Such a local restaurant with great home cooked food. The owner and our server were amazing, taking his time to explain every dish and making sure we understood the menu. The food itself was authentic and tasted great. We ordered the lentil samosas and veggie special (which could easily feed 4 people). A great find!

T Williams

Loved this restaurant. Excellent food and service, and super clean. Had the split pea and red lentils. Superb!! Will definitely add to our 'must return' list to try more dishes. What a surprise in a tourist town, so happy we found Selam.

326ninos

hidden gem. friendly and professional service. everything came out in proper time manner. food is so good, i can not even describe. highly recommend to try their beer. prices are reasonable. will definitely come back.

Elisa S.

OMG!!! This place is amazing! Abraham, the owner, is such an amazing guy! If you've never tried Ethiopian food before he will make sure that you love it! What a great experience! I will definitely come back whenever I'm back in Orlando!

Sara F.

Amazing food and amazing service. Exceptional experience. The owners are so lovely. They taught us so much about their food and culture. RUN, DONT WALK! So delicious

Mike Rodarte

Having been here twice now, I look forward to returning. I've only been to 2 Ethiopian restaurants in Florida, and this one is by far the best I've tried (and tied for number 1 or 2 out of the 7 or 8 Ethiopian restaurants I've visited). The injera is just right. The spices and flavors in the sauces are good. The meat is so tender. The coffee is strong. The staff are friendly. Prices are about $12-$15 or so per entree. It's a wonderful experience of flavors and quality food.

James Chavez

Delicious dinner and amazing experience. The service here is absolutely impeccable and top of the line. I strongly recommend that you make this experience a part of your trip.

Lucas Z.

Came here since it was close to our conference center with a large group of about 14 people. The servers were patient and accommodating, they taught us the proper way to eat the dishes with our hands as it was the first time for many. Was on a vegan challenge during this time so I got their veggie sampler while my friends got their different meats which they loved. Great sit down atmosphere and they also offer an authentic coffee ceremony that we weren't able to do because of our limited time. Would definitely recommend this place and to go with friends or family so you can share in this unique experience!

O4109PJtomp

My wife and I enjoyed our dinner here immensely. Lovely hosts and excellent food. We selected the sampler for 2, which if you are new to Ethiopian dining, would be a great way to go.

M Price

Every moment was enjoyable here. The staff were extremely kind and eager to share their knowledge about the cuisine. The vegetarian combination was superb. Staff brought us honey wine on the house to try, as well as a vegetarian bean dish. I highly recommend this place for the quality, atmosphere, and wonderful staff.

Gabriel S.

Today was the day that we found a hidden gem. Found this one by chance, and we are so glad that we came here! Hidden spot, with some flavorful and absolutely delicious food! We had 2 chicken samosas, which were extremely rich on flavor, with the right amount of spiciness. Then, we shared the meat and veggies platter - which was also delightful. Would absolutely come here again! The staff was fantastic, was attended promptly, but was also given our space to enjoy the meal. 10/10! If you have the chance, give them a visit!

Stuart Fletcher

Fantastic food, great people. They go out of their way to make you feel at home, and treat you like family. My wife is a barista and was enamored of their coffee roasting ceremony. All the food was excellent.

Rob Ruel

My wife and I are always on the lookout for good Ethiopian restaurants, saw the high rating for this one while we were in town and gave it a try. This place did not disappoint. Not only was the staff extremely friendly, but the food was top-notch, maybe the best we’ve had. My wife and I almost finished the entire veggie sampler which is meant for 2+ people, just couldn’t stop eating. I was full the rest of the night but still couldn’t stop thinking about how good it was. I even asked my wife if she wanted to get a to-go Grubhub order brought to us the next day before we had to fly home, but in the end we were just too pressed for time otherwise we were seriously considering it. The gentleman who initially greeted and served us brought me an excellent spiced tea, and made sure we were familiar with the cuisine offering to answer any questions we had. So great to have such nice staff and fantastic food to boot, I almost want to fly back down to Orlando just to eat there again. If you like Ethiopian food and are in the area do yourself a favor and go. If you’re not sure you should at least try it, if you don’t like it here you won’t like it anywhere.

Kay Smith

First time eating Ethiopian cuisine and it was absolutely fantastic! The Lentil, beef and chicken samosas were awesome. The beef dishes we ordered were wonderful and the hot sauce and hot spices on the side were spot on. Abraham was so welcoming and even brought us a sample of lentils to teach us how to use the bread to eat our meal! He was very informative about the cuisine and we instantly felt at home! The atmosphere is casual and relaxed and we will definitely return. I highly recommend this restaurant!