Today’s Small Business Spotlight features Dahlak Paradise, an Eri-Ethiopian restaurant in Philadelphia, PA. Dahlak Paradise has a special place in the hearts of Pagevamp’s founders, who lived down the street from the restaurant during their time at the University of Pennsylvania. We asked Dahlak Paradise’s owner, Ephream, a bit about himself and his restaurant. If you’re ever in Philadelphia, you should definitely drop by!
Tell us a little about Dahlak Restaurant?
Dahlak Restaurant is not only my home, but my haven. Some people call it Dahlak Paradise.
What inspired you to get started?
My late father and founder of Dahlak, Amare Solomon, inspired me to really get involved as manager, more so at the time of his death. Since then, neighbors, friends, and the loyal patrons to our venue have had nothing but great things to say about Amare. He really made them feel like they were at home, and he truly redefined the meaning of hospitality.
What’s your favorite part about your job?
I find much joy in doing what he did and putting a smile on people’s faces, and that must be my most favorite part of my job. That and the opportunity for me to be creative here with the innovations we cultivate from within our own Ethiopian, Eritrean, and American cultures.
What are your 2 favorite foods in Dahlak?
Personally, my favorite dishes are the Yedoro Watt & our new Cheesesteak Injera wraps. Yedoro is the word for Chicken in our language and watt is the title of a particular type of spicy stew that is mainly onion and tomato based. The chicken is so succulent—the meat falls right off the bone. Injera is a staple in all Eri-Ethiopian dishes. It’s a type of spongy flat-bread that is dairy-free and gluten-free, produced from a grain called teff that is rich in calcium and iron. We wanted to bring a familiar taste of Philly to our menu—call it fusion, but I say that we’ve been wanting to bring in different inspirations to our culture the way that our culture inspires others to do the same. So we made something similar to a Philly cheesesteak but with our own twist. Marinated and sauteed with our spices (watt) we’ve made rolls of this chopped cheesesteak and serve them in injera. And to my discovery, it’s amazing!
Anything else you’d like to say?
We’re so worth the try, and I encourage everyone to come through our doors. Once you do, expect to be treated like family.
Visit Dahlak Paradise’s website at www.dahlakrestaurant.com