- $13 for $25 worth of Middle Eastern cuisine
- See the full menu
Ghaith Sahib and Maath Hamed grew up in Baghdad. But after the war began, they were eventually forced to leave at different times. The two close friends reunited in Portland, where Ghaith had started a successful food cart called Aladdin’s Castle Café. Together, they parlayed the success of the food cart into Dar Salam. Here, beneath dark wooden rafters, and surrounded by curtains, cushions, and pictures of their homeland, visitors get a taste of Iraqi culture by way of authentic Iraqi food. They bite into grape leaves stuffed with rice, vegetables, and spices, or dig into the marga––a puréed chickpea stew with garam masala and cardamom, which was described as a Mix Magazine reviewer as "incredible." The restaurant’s food has certainly made waves around the city; in fact, Willamette Week has included Dar Salam on its "Portland’s Best Places to Eat" list for two years running, dubbing the eatery "Portland’s best Middle Eastern restaurant, period."