Queen of Sheba is a restaurant I have heard rave reviews about for years and just went there for my first visit last month. I am ashamed of myself for waiting so long to go as I had one of the best meals I have ever had in Louisville.

Queen of Sheba-delicious Ethiopian food

Inside, there is a prominently displayed carry-out sign, which makes me believe this is a large portion of their business.

Queen of Sheba serves Ethiopian food, which I have only had one other time. (For the record, I liked it.) But, that Ethiopian food experience and this one were worlds apart. I took my family this time for a late lunch, as the lunch crowd was just beginning to dissipate. I loved my meal so much and am craving it now, writing this post.

Queen of Sheba-delicious Ethiopian food

Lots of interesting artwork all over the restaurant.

We started with an appetizer of Sambusa, which reminded me of an empanada.

Queen of Sheba-delicious Ethiopian food

Sambusas are beef, chicken or lentils mixed with onions, green peppers, garlic and Ethiopian spices, which are stuffed in thin pastry shells and pan fried.

We shared a big combination platter of vegetarian and meat options. Then, we added two more dishes to our big platter. If you are a vegetarian, this place is a gold mine. The vegetarian options are vast.

Here’s what was on the platter:

  • Doro wot: Chicken drumsticks slow-cooked with minced onions, fresh garlic and ginger and hot sauce.
  • Alicha Sega wot: Mild beef stew with onion and potatoes, garlic, ginger and tumeric.
  • Gomen wot: Collard greens, onions and potatoes in a mild garlic sauce.
  • Atakilt: Sliced cabbage, onions and carrots in a mild tomato sauce. (Delicious!)
  • House Salad: Green leaf lettuce, tomatoes, red onion and green peppers in lemon dressing. (One of our favorites — the dressing was divine!)
  • Doro Tips: Similar to chicken fajitas, this is chicken sautéed with onion, green peppers, garlic and Ethiopian spices.
  • Kik wot: Lentil stew with hot spices, onions and garlic. (This was my favorite, but was spicy.)
Queen of Sheba-delicious Ethiopian food

Combination of meat and vegetarian dishes.

The key to Ethiopian food is injera. A spongy type of flatbread, injera is used in lieu of utensils and plates, and it pretty much plays a role in every part of your meal — especially soaking up all the sauces.

Queen of Sheba-delicious Ethiopian food

Fresh Injera, which is Ethiopian flatbread made from Teff, a unique cereal grain, plus wheat and corn flours.

Tear off a piece of the Injera and scoop your food up with it. (Forks are available upon request, though, if this isn’t your thing.)

Queen of Sheba-delicious Ethiopian food

What is Ethiopian food like? Not what you’d expect. It is a cross between Indian and Mediterranean with some great curry thrown in. It is heavy on the greens, legumes and potatoes. Some dishes are definitely spicy, so if you are sensitive to that, please tell your server. My kids were born with a jar of hot sauce in their hands, so they liked all of it.

Queen of Sheba-delicious Ethiopian food

The unexpected crowd favorite, besides the food, was the delicious Ethiopian iced tea. It is a dark, fully-leaded tea with flavors of cardamom and other spices. I ordered the first one, everyone tried it and followed suit. It’s the kind of tea that you would make a special trip for, for an afternoon pick-me-up.

Queen of Sheba-delicious Ethiopian food

Definitely order the Ethiopian Iced Tea.

My eldest daughter loved it the most, of my three. We savored every bite, then ate the soaked injera that acted as the platter for all these lovely treats.

Queen of Sheba-delicious Ethiopian food

Queen of Sheba-delicious Ethiopian food

Remains of the day.

We ate so much that we didn’t eat another bite until breakfast the next morning. And I’ll be back to do it all over again soon.

Queen of Sheba is located near Bowman Field at 2804 Taylorsville Road. Visit their website here: www.queenofshebalouisville.com.


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