Eat-up

Dok Restaurant – Restaurant Review

By Anatoli Bulti, December 2019

It’s lunchtime and a couple of us are sitting in the newly renovated outdoor section of Dok, an Italian restaurant located on the busy streets of Bole Medhanialem Cathedral, waiting for the rest of our party to arrive. The outdoor space is open enough to give you a view of what’s happening on the streets but with the privacy of a concrete hedge. Once all of us are there, we are led to the indoor dining room with nicely set up tables lined with a red and white table cloth that can accommodate as many as 10 people.

The dining room is dimly lit, with not much natural light coming through the space during the day but creates a nice ambiance at night. The décor of the interior is rather simple, with walls painted yellow and pictures hanging here and there. Antique kitchenware from old coffee grinder and bronze kettles to pots and candelabras are haphazardly hanging on hooks across the side of one of the walls. Although the antique display somehow seems out of place in the minimal and simple set up of the restaurant, one couldn’t help but think whether it might have some cultural reference.   

Once we are settled into our seats, the waiter arrives to take our orders handing us two menus – one for pizza with over 30 different choices and another for a variety of Italian dishes. While we struggle to choose, repeatedly glancing back and forth the two menus, the waiter takes our drink orders.

The food menu, in a truly Italian fashion, has a variety of dishes divided into categories; Antipasti, Zuppe, Primi (Appetizers, Soup and first course); Primi Secondi (main and second course); Contorni (Vegetable and Sides) and dolci (dessert). The pizza menu offers a range of Italian style pizzas with imported ingredients while both have a number of vegetarian options. 

After a few minutes of indecision, we settle on gnocchi and mixed salads for starters and a pear gorgonzola pizza, tagliatelle ragu, a penne pesto genouse and a combo called lunch formula for main.

The gnocchi is the first to arrive, the aroma of the gorgonzola cheese sauce filling the room before even reaching our table. The small dumplings are soft and buttery, a cheesy delight and a nice complement to our mixed salad appetizer. The lunch formula is a combo of chicken and lasagna served with a choice of steamed rice or French fries. The chicken, a schnitzel, is at the crispy enough on the outside and tender inside.

Dok’s pizza has a tasty light tomato base, thin and crisp crusts and perfectly balanced ingredients. But, if you thought pineapple was an unusual addition to pizza, then the pear gorgonzola Pizza will not change your mind about fruit toppings on pizza. In a choice that left our table divided, Gorgonzola Pizza was served with pear toppings, a combination that was equally interesting and unusual. Personally, I was not a fan of the pears, but the rest of the pizza was good enough to overlook pear addition.

The tomato sauce of the tagliatelle ragu is rich with flavor while the penne pesto genouse was made from fresh homemade pesto. The rich flavor of the basil and the penne al dente made this dish a personal favorite.

A popular restaurant in the city, Dok is the perfect place for a nice romantic date, a family outing or a group dinner. While tables are always available for a small group, it is advisable to reserve a table in advance for larger groups. The restaurant also has a second space located inside the Alliance Ethio-francaise compound aptly named Dok@Alliance, offering similar Italian and Mediterranean dishes.

A nice Euro-pop playlist plays in the background as we scrape out the last of the food on our table. We skip dessert and order tea and espresso. Belly full and caffeinated, we set out with the rest of our plans for the afternoon. I could still taste the strong and rich flavor of the basil from the pesto penne dish as we walk out, and I couldn’t be any more satisfied.

Photo By: Photo by: Anteneh Girma, Abyissinia Photographers Hub

Location: Bole Medhanialem between Echo Lounge an Abyssinia Bank

On Google Maps? Yes

Service /label: Restaurant

Opening Hours: 09:00 AM – 11:00 PM

Facebook: @Dok Italian Resturant Addis 

Instagram: @dokresturant

Phone Number: +251 91 250 3281