$19 for an Ethiopian Meal for Two at Blue Nile Cafe ($38.90 Value)

River Market

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In a Nutshell

Duos shares a platter of beef cubes in a spiced sauce, marinated chicken, and stew made from red lentils, all scooped up with injera bread

The Fine Print

Expires 90 days after purchase. Limit 1 per person, may buy 1 additional as a gift. Limit 1 per table. Dine-in only. Merchant is solely responsible to purchasers for the care and quality of the advertised goods and services.

Introducing a date to foreign cuisine can make you seem exotic, much like only communicating with them in the language you just invented. Be worldly with this Groupon.

The Deal

$19 for an Ethiopian meal for two (a $38.90 total value)

  • Sambusa pastries filled with spiced ground beef or a vegetarian mix of spiced lentils and cabbage (a $4.95 value)
  • A meat and vegetarian sampler platter (a $33.95 value)

The platter includes salad or veggies as well as dorro watt (chicken) and tibbs watt (beef) as well as the following vegetarian dishes: gomen (collard greens), misir watt (lentils), atklet watt (cabbage and potato), kik watt (split peas), mushroom shiro (with lentils), and dinch watt (potato stew). See the menu for full item descriptions.

Blue Nile Cafe

Daniel and Selam Fikru, now husband and wife, met when they were high-school students in their native Ethiopia. They've lived in Kansas City since 1995, and together, they've helped a large following of locals try their first tastes of Ethiopian food and subsequently fall in love with its rich, distinctive spices.

The couple's traditional recipes have earned their restaurant, Blue Nile Cafe, a recommendation from KCUR FM’s Food Critics, a place on LocalEats’ Top 100 Restaurants in Kansas City list, and attention from Pitch. But their success over the past two decades hasn’t come without hard work. According to a profile by the Kansas City Star, Selam is in the kitchen by early morning six days a week, simmering meats and lentils in a medley of ginger, garlic, and rosemary. Selam’s labors yield a bounty of entrees—served atop communal platters—featuring marinated chicken and cubes of beef or lamb, as well as vegetarian feasts of lentils, potatoes, and greens. Diners scoop up dishes with pieces of injera, which is a spongy sourdough pancake.

In the dining room, cream-colored walls bear colorful paintings that remind diners of their meals' distant origins. For an additional taste of Ethiopian culture, guests can partake in a traditional Ethiopian coffee ceremony wherein staffers roast, grind, and brew fresh coffee to order. Guests can otherwise opt for refreshing glasses of wine out on the patio.

In addition to welcoming guests into the dining room, Blue Nile Cafe invites them into the kitchen during classes that guide students in preparing injera and other traditional dishes. The restaurant also equips pupils with spices and grains for simmering over their own trashcan fires.

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