Aksum
Aksum

Aksum

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.aksumcafe.com/site/
  • Phone: (267) 275-8195
  • Hours of Operation:
    Dinner: Monday - Sunday: 5:00pm -11:00pm;
    Brunch: Saturday - Sunday: 10:00am - 3:00pm;
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Diners Club,Discover,JCB,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Mediterranean, Middle Eastern
  • Executive Chef: Wayne Whiteside
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: BYO Liquor, Cafe, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access
  • Private Party Facilities: Aksum provides creative packages with personalized menus for unique events.



Getting there

  • Cross Street: 47th
  • Public Transit: 34st SEPTA
  • Parking: Street Parking
  • Parking Details: Street parking on Baltimore Ave and free parking lot on 47th and Warrington.
A word from Aksum
Aksum is one of Philadelphia’s favorite BYOB restaurants.
Located in the thriving Baltimore Avenue corridor in vibrant and diverse University City, the year-old restaurant features a bright Mediterranean menu that focuses on simple and fresh ingredients, with accents from Europe, North Africa and the Middle East. Chef Wayne Whiteside
Continued
Foodspotting photos
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerMediterranean
Aksum reviews from OpenTable diners
32 reviews since July 24, 2014
Overall Rating4.2
  • Food4.3
    Service4.3
  • Ambiance4.3
    Noise LevelModerate
94% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
neighborhood gem (25)fit for foodies (19)good for groups (10)great for outdoor dining (9)great for brunch (9)romantic (5)special occasion (5)great for lunch (4)late-night find (4)kid-friendly (2)hot spot (2)scenic view (1)Show More
  • Phillyexplorer
    Phillyexplorer
    Dined on 11/9/2014
    This is the second time we've dined at Aksum. Sunday evening, not crowded (??), food was good, and our waitress was attentive and quite nice! A great spot for vegetarians, vegans, GF, and meat eaters!!
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 11/4/2014
    Aksum is a lovely Mediterranean-style restaurant that serves brunch and dinner, with gluten-free, vegan and vegetarian options. Our food was delicious; the service was superb. For those with strict dietary restrictions, be certain to ask. They will be happy to accommodate. For dessert, try the flan. It was exquisite. Note: the dinner menu does not serve pork but the brunch menu does.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, late-night find, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • The food is the Winner here
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 11/1/2014
    Arrived 20 minutes late on an Open Table reservation to be told our table was given up, yet people without reservations were being seated. Then we had to nicely promise we could leave within an hour and a half. Aksum shouldn't accept Open Table if it has a problem with it. That has never happened to us anywhere. Otherwise the food is excellent. The menu items were of enough variety and everything was seasoned perfectly. I would definitely come back to Aksum but not with Open Table.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • great food
    BYOBlover
    Dined on 11/1/2014
    The food was delicious. Since we hadn't made reservations very far in advance, we went early. Not many folks there at 5:30 but it got busy later. Our waitress was very professional, but friendly. We picked this restaurant b/c we were meeting someone from the area. We would go again but we don't live right in the area.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great find!
    Heidisthoughts
    Dined on 10/25/2014
    An Internet search led me here and so glad it did! Had an amazing dinner with a group of 6, ages 15-53. Everyone loved their meal. We had the best Brussel sprouts ever and those were just the beginning. If you enjoy food with lots of flavor and an ethnic flair, you'll love Aksum. Cozy spot that accommodated our large party with excellent service. I would also go back for a quiet dinner for two, in fact, my husband is ready for our next long weekend in Philly just to go back to Aksum. To top off the amazing food, setting and service, the prices are incredible and you can BYO. Definitely recommended!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • It was nice, as usual
    SophieD
    Dined on 10/20/2014
    We were the only table in the restaurant (on a Monday night), so we had outstanding service and it was very quiet. The food is decent, and different from the rest you can find in West Philly. The presentation of the dishes is usually beautiful. The taste not amazing though, I think it could be more tasteful, but it's above average.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Middle eastern fusion
    mrwhiskers
    Dined on 10/18/2014
    I have eaten both brunch and dinner here and both meals were very good. i love that their food imparts middle eastern flavoring without being the usual sort of boring things offered at most middle eastern restaurants. Everything was cooked perfectly, the lamb perfect medium rare, etc. we will definitely be going back there and recommend it to our friends.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for brunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • mike
    Dined on 10/8/2014
    Awesome Food and even better service. You should definately check this place out if you haven't already.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, hot spot, late-night find, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Aksum is Aksome! 😋😋😋
    Goldengirl
    Dined on 9/27/2014
    Aksum is Aksome! For a change I ordered a vegetarian dish. It was delicious, flavorful and satisfying. I felt no guilt when my husband and I ordered the Oreo Beignets for dessert ! 😋😋😋
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Excellent food, service & ambience
    tfe9507
    Dined on 8/31/2014
    Had my birthday dinner (group of 12) and everything was wonderful. The server, Kim, was friendly, attentive and helpful.- she made sure my evening went smoothly. The food was delicious (must try the lentil tapa), and the prices are very reasonable.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great experience!
    Cheeki
    Dined on 8/31/2014
    I took a friend of mine here for brunch and we had a great time. I ordered the fava beans and the Jerusalem artichokes which were fried which were excellent. My friend she had the spicy shrimp with the grits with a side of avocado and we also had the potatoes with fried onions which was very very good. I will definitely go back here for brunch but I also would go back for dinner because they had a wide selection of food. Also if you are vegan they have a wide selection of vegetarian and vegan entrées.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for brunch, great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Excellent choice in Ucity
    flyingdutchmanVIP
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    We've lived in this neighborhood for a couple of years, and this is our favorite Friday night hangout. We run into neighbors here, the atmosphere is relaxed and Chef Wayne's food is always excellent. Great value.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, kid-friendly, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, late-night find, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Ratings-Only Reviews
    Based on 20 ratings-only reviews submitted since July 24, 2014
    • Overall Rating4.1
    • Food4.2
    • Ambiance4.1
    • Service4.1
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The following 61 reviews are from the Aksum reviews archive.
  • Delicious and cozy
    PhillygrlFoodie
    Dined on 7/15/2014
    I love the atmosphere. It's a great neighborhood spot, but worth the travel across town. I had my birthday dinner there and we had a great time. The food was delicious. Lovely BYOB.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • PDW, Esq.
    foodoyoflife
    Dined on 6/6/2014
    The appetizers- octopus salad and risotto balls, were delicious and fresh. I enjoyed the entree- lamb but it was a bit tough. The bread was not my ideal as it was thin and skimpy. They did not have fresh ground pepper as they ran out and I only learned it was unavailable after I requested it with the food already on the table. For the price, I expected more accouterments like pepper, cold water, and a table cloth. With the street just nearby, the noise level from people talking but not dining right outside on the sidewalk alongside our table was a bit obnoxious but the warm spring air was nice. The server was attentive.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, romantic, late-night find, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Nice Addition
    OpenTable Diner Since 2009VIP
    Dined on 6/5/2014
    What a nice addition to the Baltimore Ave restaurant scene. I was disappointed with the lamb chops as they were mostly bone and not much meat. I asked for them to be cooked medium and they were served rare. The mussels were good as was the beignets and baklava for dessert. I'll be back again as the menu looks quite interesting.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, scenic view, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Mediterranean Fabulousness
    YoungPhillyFoodie
    Dined on 6/3/2014
    The mfood was extremely flavorful. Everything was fresh and in season. Definitely good portion sizes. Everything all the way through from starters to desserts was delicious.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, kid-friendly, fit for foodies, romantic, great for lunch, late-night find, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • great mother's day brunch
    femmasaurusrex
    Dined on 5/11/2014
    The food was amazing and reasonably priced. The weather was beautiful and the breeze blowing through the open windows made for a lovely experience. The only down side was being rushed out due to the staff needing our table when there were other empty tables around. It didn't ruin the experience for me, and I will definitely be going back to check it out during normal hours.
    Special Features:
    scenic view, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Consistently great
    Ange
    Dined on 5/10/2014
    Aksum is a great find with good food, service and ambience all rolled together. It has a nice vibe that derives from a simple decor with lots of open windows and an eclectic menu with great choices for everyone. We've only sat inside but the outside tables look quite appealing. BYOB with easy parking in the area make it a great destinaion restaurant without the hassle of center city parking as well as a good choice for that "neighborhood" place. Portions are more than adequate and flavors came through on all our dishes. Second time and looking forward to the third!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Food and scenery a plus
    KL1111111
    Dined on 4/26/2014
    My party of 4 tried many of the tapas dishes and enjoyed each one. There are several more on the menu that we want to try next time. Will look forward to taking other people there.
    Special Features:
    Fit For Foodies, Good for Groups, Great for Outdoor Dining, Neighborhood Gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Decent`
    nonamegiven
    Dined on 4/12/2014
    Decent meal, decent food. The octopus salad was great, but the chicken and lamb dishes I ordered were not great, especially for the price. Octopus salad is the only thing that would bring me back.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Good for a date night
    Maris
    Dined on 4/10/2014
    I had heard about the restaurant from friends so my boyfriend and I went there for a date night. We were not let down! We brought our own wine. The service was excellent, and our waitress let us try a sample of the soup special. All of the food was very tasty. There was a private party going on the night we were there so it was relatively noisy, but that would be my only complaint.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for brunch, romantic, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Excellent mix of vibrance & flavor
    AveryB
    Dined on 4/9/2014
    I never would have expected such amazing food hidden away so far from center city. You will not be disappointed by your experience.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Would recommend for small group byo
    jdk19
    Dined on 4/3/2014
    Very accommodating wait staff and the food was delicious
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Loved the place
    OpenTable Diner Since 2005VIP
    Dined on 3/26/2014
    Great food. Great service. Easy to find street parking.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • There were five of us in our
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 3/18/2014
    There were five of us in our group and we all loved the food. I would highly recommend Aksum!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for brunch, kid-friendly, neighborhood gem, hot spot, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Even for brunch, Aksum succeeds
    HappyCustomer
    Dined on 3/15/2014
    Even for brunch, Aksum succeeds in serving interesting and well-prepared food. It is very reasonably priced too. Worth every penny!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for brunch, kid-friendly, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great ethnic food
    MicKEVIP
    Dined on 3/13/2014
    Food was excellent, large portions, prices reasonable, nice atmosphere. It is BYOB
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, late-night find, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Creative takes
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 2/14/2014
    The special occasion prix fixe was great from top to bottom. Particularly notable was the lobster bisque - not typical mediterranean to my knowledge, but velvet deliciousnous nonetheless. Both the lemon desert and the mousse were delightful.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • PalletteQueenVIP
    Dined on 1/30/2014
    I made a reservation here based on reviews, and I was very impressed by the food. The neighborhood can be a little off-putting because the neighborhood it's in, but inside the restaurant, it's inviting and cozy. The restaurant is on the small side, and the tables are a bit cramped. The food was excellent and very fresh. Some items were unexpectedly spicy, but not to the point of being inedible. I'd definitely return here again when I can make the time to trek into the city.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • I took my husband to Aksum
    OpenTable Diner Since 2013
    Dined on 1/17/2014
    I took my husband to Aksum for our 10th wedding anniversary. I was very pleasantly surprised at this little neighborhood gem that has been right under our noses the entire 11 years we have lived in this area. The food was absolutely delicious and the service wonderful. This is a great place to dine with someone or even alone.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Amazing! Sabba is the best!!
    rdrwVIP
    Dined on 12/21/2013
    We arrived at Aksum to find that there was a large party going on, making the restaurant noisy and crowded. The owner, Sabba, could not have been more gracious or accommodating. She found a place for us to sit, kept us happy, and well fed, for about 30 min., until the restaurant cleared out. She found us a lovely table, where we were served a delicious dinner, by thoughtful and attentive staff. The food - appetizers such as lentil salad, hummus, grape leaves, and calamari, and entrees - red snapper, shrimp pil-pil, sirloin steak, and curried tofu, were all spectacular. The food was fresh, full of flavor, and presented beautifully. Our party of 4 were all incredibly pleased with the entire experience of dining at Aksum. Can't wait to return.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Nice place to try for something
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007
    Dined on 12/20/2013
    Nice place to try for something dfferent and outside of Center City. The food was good, but I wasn't wowed.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Oasis in west philly
    hungrygirl
    Dined on 12/7/2013
    We loved our visit to Aksum. The four of us sampled more than our share of appetizers. The service was great, and we had a chance to speak with the owner. She was lovely and helpful in her recommendations as well as providing us with a brief background about the restaurant. There was a good mix in the patrons which means that it can be a bit loud if you are sitting next to a banquet table of University students. Don't let that dissuade you from going. The atmosphere in new and inviting. You must try the unique and very reasonably prices dishes.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Love it here
    Foodisgood
    Dined on 11/10/2013
    I recently discovered this great little gem in west philly. I have not had a bad dish yet and have eaten here twice already. I am planning to going back again soon as I find the food and prices well worth it. . I have tried most of the appetizers and a few of the entrees, it seems that you can't go wrong. The . Oreo stuffed beignet for desert is remarkable. Really great food and very reasonable prices.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for brunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Good food for the price
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010
    Dined on 11/9/2013
    My wife and I shared an appetizer, a salad, and a main course. We were seated promptly; good service; ambience was simple but elegant, although we were seated out of the main dining area, at a table for two, between the bar & the window. Not a bad thing but if you don't like small spaces, ask for a different table. Dishes were well seasoned with interesting flavors. Worth another visit to taste more.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great experience
    SandraVIP
    Dined on 11/9/2013
    Aksum was a wonderful experience. There was enough variety on the menu that one member of the party, a vegetarian, was able to find a menu item with no problem. We will certainly return.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Global Dining with an Urban Twist
    OpenTable Diner Since 2013
    Dined on 11/1/2013
    Brunch was so amazing! We went back for dinner. An exquisite mediterranean menu that combines global flavors in a sensible way. The salmon and red snapper cooked to perfection. We particularly liked the spinach salad as an appetizer. The service is great - friendly, attentive, and personable. Ambience - warm, and very pretty.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for brunch, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Restaurant w Great Food
    jball1383
    Dined on 10/18/2013
    We love Aksum! Its always fresh and delicious. Its a great BYOB with fantastic Mediterranean food that won't kill your wallet!
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • A Lovely Brunch
    amelt88
    Dined on 9/22/2013
    My family and I went to Aksum for a Sunday brunch and we had a very lovely experience. The restaurant is fairly small inside but feels very comfortable. Everyone in my party ordered something different -creme brulee french toast, sweet corn griddlecakes, pancakes with cinnamon cream, and fried eggs over a chickpea stew - and we all enjoyed our really enjoyed our meals. We also all walked away extremely stuffed because the portion sizes are enormous! This was my first time trying Aksum after having passed it several times and I am very glad that I finally gave it a try. I will definitely be coming back to try more items on their menu.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for brunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Very enjoyable evening
    HappyDiner1VIP
    Dined on 8/31/2013
    This unpretentious restaurant has an eclectic menu with selections labeled specifically for vegans, vegetarians, gluten-free eaters and (without the label), carnivores. Sparsely but tastefully furnished with an excellent, friendly waitstaff. The food was presented nicely and was delicious - the tomato basil soup was especially notable. Prices are reasonable, BYOB (they have wine glasses and corkscrews), the atmosphere pleasant (it is near U of P in a burgeoning residential district), there are outdoor tables for those so inclined and a nice brunch menu, although we were there for dinner. An enjoyable evening at every level and a place to which we will be happy to return soon and often.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, great for brunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate