Up till now, the capital of Jordan remains to be one of the most authentic and historical cities in the world. While wandering along its often busy and crowded streets you would inevitably come upon a whole bunch of cafes and restaurants. The city itself is known for its hectic lifestyle. The streets of Amman, especially in its downtown area, are overcrowded; the city has big traffic. However, the neverending buzz that never seems to stop in this city should not put you off from visiting its biggest treasure – authentic cafes and restaurants. Here even the most demanding tourist would find a whole plethora of very delicious Arabic dishes that combine the flavors of the traditional Jordanian, Palestinian and Lebanese cuisines.
Welcome to Amman! and let’s share our gastronomic impressions!
The restaurant is located on the hilltop of an old Jordanian village. The whole territory is surrounded by the stone walls that resemble the early national settlements in Amman. Kan Zamaan is an ingenuine place where the best national Arabic food in Amman is served. In the past times, the area was once a part of Khirbet Abu Jaber rural area.
The History of the Place
The area was used for farming and ranching and was turned into a horse barn. Later on, the place was ruined and stayed untouched until its renovation and transformation into one of the most beautiful national cuisine restaurants. So it is not a big wonder, that Kan Zaman is perfectly balancing between the past and present, between new and old. For me, the place has its flavor, an authentic one – this flavor is the flavor of old Jordan, its taste, its culture, its artisan food, its music, and national heritage.
The place perfectly combines oriental Arabic cuisine and local Jordanian food traditions. When combined with artisan food, art, music, and culture Kan Zamaan becomes an ideal destination for a demanding tourist who will find the ancient walls of Kan Zamaan an ideal place for sparing its free time.
Fat Tony’s is an American Restaurant. This is a Chicago style food restaurant in Amman. The restaurant offers a variety of American style food. Here you can try delicious burgers, Italian beef, seafood, and all kinds of Mexican food. This hidden gem of Jordan offers a fantastic service.
If you are new to this place try to taste the Italian beef. It is so tender! Just the same as the seafood served at this very restaurant. The dip of this food is worth to die for! I am joking, but to some extent, Fat Tony’s is a place where you should go if you want to try something delicious and special. Take for example the Italian beef – it tastes like you are eating beef somewhere in Chicago.
The History of Fat Tony’s
Just a few words about this place. Fat Tony’s was opened on Khalda Circle, Amman. The place is loved by many for its authenticity and the unique taste of food. Menu served in this restaurant is good for groups, and solo travelers. The place has excellent service, creative cuisine, and tasting menu, which is good both for big groups of tourists and solo travelers. Also, Fat Tony’s has an excellent service, which is open till late hours, has a stylish interior and very good staff.
The restaurant is loved by those who like the authenticity and good taste of food that is served in this restaurant. No matter whether it is Mexican food, Italian beef, super delicious burgers, or seafood, once you enter the place you will be mesmerized by the variety of dishes it suggests. The list includes burgers, fries, fish/seafood platter (grilled not fried), fish burrito + coconut shrimps and burritos. These are just a few of the options served in this unique place.
Do not forget that Ray, the owner of this place would do all possible and impossible to make you feel like a family. Here you can try delicious food, enjoy amazing customer service, try the Italian Beef sandwich that tastes simply awesome. Also, the place has something very, very special – a sandwich that is 100 years old and even has its own story. The place itself is good for both hanging out and eating. Just thing about Fat Tony’s fish/seafood platter – yumm!!.
The uniqueness of Fat Tony’s is that the place itself combines not only really delicious food but also has a great atmosphere. The Italian combo is simply perfect. It is both juicy and perfectly spicy.
Fat Tony’s is a great place for Amman tourists who love American food and want to relax in a friendly atmosphere with their friends and family. The food is delicious. No matter which meal you will try they all will be very good. My list of preferable dishes is Italian sandwich, meat burritos, meat taco, and Chicago hotdogs.
Just Try it!
Do not ignore a chance to try the traditional Italian sandwich with fresh sirloin shredded meat, sausage, mozzarella cheese, and yummy sauce. Also, try to taste burritos. They are very good and yummy. Hotdogs and tacos have good taste too. Generally speaking, if you are looking for something unique and special, try to visit Fat Tony’s and you will never be disappointed. It will be a remarkable experience you should try by yourself.
Beef Week at Fat Tony’s Restaurant
The place is famous for its fresh fish, shrimps, squids. You can choose yourself whether you want all this stuff to be cooked on the grill, or in a sauce. Special advice for visitors is to try local falafel and hummus, which turned out to be above all praise! You should also try salty vegetables, like cucumbers, but there are several types of them. Without any doubt, Hashem restaurant can undisputedly be regarded as one of the most authentic places in Amman.
One of Amman’s oldest and best-loved restaurants in Down Town is Hashem. At first glance, Hashem is a simple bistro but it is not quite true. This place features – by common consensus – some of the best falafel (local dish) in the country. Hashem is located in the middle of the capital’s bustling downtown area. Here you can get an experience which is close to none. Few places in Amman are so effortlessly unique and authentic. The basic furnishing of this place is nothing compared to the rich in flavor food that is served in Hashem restaurant.
Hashem Restaurant DownTown
Visiting Jordan’s capital Amman and not visiting one of its oldest restaurants is practically impossible. Hashem Restaurant in Down Town is one of Amman’s oldest and most frequently visited restaurants. You will be greatly impressed by the gastronomic impressions of Hashem’s menu. The restaurant suggests quite a big assortment of food, which is quite unusual for the majority of downtown restaurants. Service is prompt, the staff is polite and any moment the staff of the restaurant is ready to serve the needs of its demanding customers.
In addition to all the above mentioned attributes, this oriental place suggests its visitors the best musical accompaniment, like reading the Koran or listening to the ancient Arabic songs. On the walls of this place you can see a lot of famous people of Jordan including the portrait of the King Abdalla and his Royal family.
This lively restaurant in Al Weibdeh district feeds locals and tourists at a single blow. Everything is delicious, and a special dish cooked in pottery is especially fun to receive and eat (the waiter destroys the dining pot, and then you get delicious food from the pot). Good service, great prices. The restaurant offers delicious Lebanese food. It has a perfect interior design, the terrace, and authentic food. The restaurant is very easy to get to. It is located very close to Paris Square. The whole area is full of foreign tourists.
Rakwet Arab is located in the area, known for its shops, cafes, pubs, and restaurants. The place is a combination of a cafe and a restaurant. Usually, there are too many tourists, a lot of smoke which makes this place quite noisy and smoggy.
Rakwet Arab offers a huge menu of Middle Eastern food and drinks. Generally, Rakwet Arab is a relaxing place. The place is tastefully decorated, it has soft lighting and has an atmosphere good for reading good books. The place has reasonable prices. Also, it is quite humble and is a perfect hide from city noise and smoke.
Without any doubt, Reems is the best place for shawarma in Amman. It is famous all across Amman for its takeaway offerings. Due to its popularity, the place can be often cramped with a lot of hungry visitors. The place is known for its long queues but up till now holds its number one place in the list of the most popular quick snack places in Amman.
Other popular Restaurants in Amman
Even though in Amman restaurants suggest various gastronomic experiences – the most popular in Amman are the restaurants specializing in the national cuisine. One of the most well-known restaurants where the national cuisine is served is Jafra. Jafra restaurant is located in the heart of the historic district of Amman, Downtown.
Jafra was opened in 1939, its founders were Palestinians who were expelled from their lands and wanted to bring the taste of their national food to Jordan. It is believed that in that very restaurant you can taste the best Palestinian dishes. The restaurant serves its visitors with soups and suggests dozens of options for meat dishes.
If you want a good Breakfast…
This is an ideal place for you to have breakfast with your family and friends. A variety of desserts, pastries and bread, various breakfast cereal, omelets, falafel, hummus, foul, fresh fruits and vegetables. You will also find here several kinds of juice, tea and much more stuff if you just go to Jafra’s breakfast buffet. It would be fair to say that Jafra is an ideal place for those who love fresh pastries and bread varieties, homemade jams, sausage, cheese, several kinds of juices, tea.
The restaurant has quite a unique design that makes this place different from other places of the same category. The restaurant still maintains its unique glamor and the inside furnishing is left almost unchanged, which gives Jafra restaurant a hint of uniqueness and authenticity. Cozy, little boisterous when it gets closer to evening, the restaurant is hidden from the eyes of a tourist who is new to Amman.
How to find the Jafra?
You have to be persistent to find this place but when you find it you’ll see that your perseverance can be rewarding as Jafra is a truly unique place. Welcoming staff, good food, shisha combined with the menu of traditional Arabic dishes that caters well to both meat lovers and vegetarians – all these things you can find here in Jafra.
Jafra’s freshly cooked bread and labneh (strained yogurt) are particularly interesting for those who want to try something from the Palestinian national kitchen. The place is popular with both locals and tourists and appeals to every taste, both of a demanding tourist and a hungry local. All the ways go to Jafra!
Burj Al Hamam restaurant
Specialties of the Burj Al Hamam restaurant, which represents modern Middle Eastern cuisine, include mostly barbecues and Arabic food cooked from meat. Also, please take into consideration the fact that all dishes are cooked only from fresh meat. Therefore Burj Al Hamam restaurant can be considered as a suitable place both for meat lovers and vegetarians. Here you can also try the popular examples of national baking. The meal in the Burj Al Hamam restaurant usually goes altogether with the original fruit desserts.
Fans of rest in exquisite places will enjoy the Burj Al Hamam restaurant, whose menu includes popular Lebanese and Middle Eastern dishes. This restaurant has an elegant and modern atmosphere, it will surely appeal to those who are not yet familiar with the peculiarities of national cooking. Visitors here are offered a large selection of traditional meze snacks, the variety of which will make it possible to determine the main features of the national culinary traditions.
Burj Al Hamam restaurant
Fans of rest in exquisite places will enjoy the Burj Al Hamam restaurant, whose menu includes popular Lebanese and Jordanian dishes. The restaurant has a modern, high-budget elegant look, decorated in bright colors, with a warm atmosphere that is atypically casual for Jordan. Burj Al Hamam restaurant will surely appeal to those who are not yet familiar with the peculiarities of national cooking but want to try something national, exquisite and delicious.
Also, visitors of the Burj Al Hamam restaurant can choose from a whole list of traditional meze snacks, the variety of which will make it possible to determine the main features of the national culinary traditions.
Situated on Basman Street, Zorba is a well-known restaurant in Amman. The place is known for its simple decor, friendly staff and exceptionally delicious food. The portions are usually big and the prices are low as compared to the other places in the city. Although rather simple in its look the restaurant is known for its excellently cooked traditional Arabic recipes.
Zorba is open until late hours and is suitable both for solo travelers and large groups. Do not forget about Zorba’s excellent food dishes that are cooked by the best chefs in the country thus prompting tourists to try them.
If you are tired of Amman luxury hotels and modern style restaurants they suggest and instead want to try something national then you have to go to the place that is 100% oriental. Al Quds restaurant is just that place. This is a national food restaurant that suggests its visitors a very simple menu. Most of these dishes are made according to Jordanian and Palestinian recipes.
Indisputably, Al Quds is one of the most visited places in Amman. The secret of this place is generous portions, reasonable prices, and traditional dishes like mansaf. Cooked from lamb meat and yogurt, accompanied with a big portion of boiled rice and decorated with golden fried almonds this dish is the most frequently ordered one in this oriental restaurant.
Slightly hectic style of cafe should not put you off from visiting this place as what is the most valuable in Al Quids is its unique “zeki” (in Arabic means delicious) taste of food. Also, Al Quds restaurant suggests a wide range of kebabs and sweet desserts, which are simply delicious. Just find King Hussein Street in Downtown, Amman and try this place!
Among lovers of sweets, Habibah Sweets is a hugely popular cafe where you can taste the most popular Arabian sweets. Here are preparing a variety of options for kunafa, some species of which have an incredible design. Kunafa (also spelled knafeh, kanafeh) is a traditional Arabic dessert made from a warm cheese pastry soaked in syrup. There two ways to make kunafa: you can cook it from the rough crust of semolina, or you can use noodle-like threads.
What is Kunafa?
Kunafa is a traditional Palestinian sweet the best examples of which can be found in the Palestinian Nablus. The basic component of this rather exquisite Arabic dish is goat cheese soaked in special syrup and decorated with crushed pistachio. The dish is served only when it is hot.
To get the best of this sweet you have you go straight to the most famous sweet house in Amman —Habibah Sweets. Usually, the cafe serves a long continuous line of sweet lovers who crave to try at least a small bit of this original oriental dish. In this cafe of pastry sweets, you can not only try but also take away the food.
Without any doubt, Habibah Sweets is one of the finest sweet shops in Amman. The company itself has its history that dates back to the old times. The place offers a whole range of sweet delicatessen, which makes this place a number one in the list of sweets lovers.
Their assortment of sweets is really big starting from the traditional “baklava”, followed by the same traditional sweet “kanafa” (a cheese pastry soaked in a sugary syrup), and other, no less interesting options. A good addition to the above-mentioned list is a big selection of ice creams and desserts.