Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.32mi
  2. Distance: 0.37mi
  3. Distance: 0.49mi
  4. Distance: 0.50mi
  1. Distance: 0.32mi
  2. Distance: 0.37mi
  3. Distance: 0.49mi
  4. Distance: 0.50mi

Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.32mi
  2. Distance: 0.37mi
  3. Distance: 0.49mi
  4. Distance: 0.50mi
  1. Distance: 0.32mi
  2. Distance: 0.37mi
  3. Distance: 0.49mi
  4. Distance: 0.50mi

About Ambar

Ambar is the first modern, international Balkan cuisine restaurant in DC. Inside three locations in Belgrade, Arlington and Washington DC, Ambar blends tradition and heritage with creativity and modern design. The result is an unforgettable visitor experience that reaches all the senses with delicious food, unbelievable drinks and an atmosphere that blends comfort and high style. From rich food, fine furniture, interior design and the widest choice of the finest Balkan rakias, to our first class service – every detail is meticulously woven into an unique experience that will leave you breathless. Welcome to the best of the Balkans.

523 8th Street SE
Washington, DC 20003
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Dining Style:
Casual Elegant

Cuisines:
Balkan style, Jugoslavian, Eastern European

Hours of Operation:
Lunch : Monday - Friday 11am - 2pm
Brunch: Saturday - Sunday 10am - 3:30pm
Dinner: Monday / Tuesday/ Wednesday/ Thursday 4pm - 10pm
Friday 4pm - 11pm
Saturday 4:30pm - 11pm
Sunday 4:30pm - 10pm

Cross Street:
E Street

Dress Code:
Casual Dress

Price Range:
$30 and under

Payment Options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(202) 813-3039

Website:
http://www.ambarrestaurant.com/

Parking Details:
Valet parking is available Wednesday – Saturday across the street from our location.

Public metered parking via parking station is available along 8th Street, SE from E Street to our north to I street to our south.

2 hour residential parking located nearby in the surrounding neighborhood at E Street, G Street, 7th Street, and 9th Street

Public Transit:
We are metro accessible via the Orange, Blue and Silver Lines exiting at the Eastern Market metro station. Walk east to 8th Street and then proceed south 1 and a half blocks to our location at 523 8th Street (west side of the block).

Executive Chef:
Ivan Zivkovic

Additional:
Banquet, Bar/Lounge, Beer, BYO Wine, Cafe, Chef's Table, Cocktails, Corkage Fee, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Private Room, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Special Events & Promotions:
Please contact Ljubodrag Mojsilovic at draza@ambarrestaurant.com or 202.813.7350.

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Private Dining

Ambar is a modern Balkan tapas-style restaurant. With a desire to introduce Washington, D.C. to cutting edge Balkan cuisine, proprietor Ivan Iricanin has created a dining space that will delight and indulge the senses.

Ambar Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.8

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.8

service

4.7

ambience

4.6

value

4.7

Noise

Moderate

99% would recommend it to a friend

Tapas (95)
Special Occasion (75)
Creative Cuisine (73)
See All
Good for a Date (70)
Fit for Foodies (66)
Authentic (65)
Fun (59)
Neighborhood Gem (56)
Tasting Menu (55)
Casual (49)
Good for Birthdays (47)
Cozy (45)
Good for Groups (42)
Good for Anniversaries (38)
Good Vegetarian Options (38)
Worth the Drive (36)
Romantic (35)
Great for Brunch (33)
Hot Spot (30)
Bar Seating (29)
Comfort Food (26)
Handcrafted Cocktails (21)
Healthy (17)
Sunday Lunch (16)
Happy Hour (14)
Pre/post Theatre (14)
Vibrant Bar Scene (14)
People Watching (13)
Great for Lunch (12)
Local Ingredients (11)
Business Meals (10)
Seasonal (10)
Vegan (9)
Great for Outdoor Dining (8)
Spicy (8)
Quiet Conversation (7)
Notable Wine List (6)
Gluten Free Options (5)
Great Beer (5)
Paleo Friendly (4)
Late-night Find (3)
Afternoon Coffee (2)
Organic (2)
Quick Bite (2)
Kid-friendly (1)
Disabled Access (1)
Live Sports (1)
Scenic View (1)
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1674 reviews
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·Dined 2 days ago

We were visiting DC for the weekend and wanted a great meal before we went home on Sunday. The brunch was absolutely amazing. The items were creative, tasted great, and came out fast from the kitchen. We did the Balkan menu and have no regrets. Totally worth every penny.

Tags: Sunday Lunch, Tasting Menu, Creative Cuisine, Great for Brunch, Good for a Date, Worth the Drive
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Columbus)·Dined 2 days ago

We came here to celebrate, ordered the Balkan Experience ($49 per person for unlimited small plates and drinks) and loved it! It was really fun to try the Balkan specialties, and certainly worth the money!

Tags: Tapas, Fun, Healthy, Tasting Menu, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value3

 
·Dined 2 days ago

This place was amazing! We got the Balkan experience meal. It was well worth it. Our server made wonderful suggestions and everything was delicious. Each dish she brought out was better than the one before. I was almost sad that I got full because I really wanted to keep trying new things. Everything was freshly prepared and exquisitely presented. It was delicious and different!
It was an experience and the food was the best food I ever had in DC. And the Mimosas were delightful.
You should go there!!

Tags: Good for Groups, Special Occasion, People Watching, Good for Birthdays, Tasting Menu, Tapas, Authentic, Sunday Lunch, Fit for Foodies, Good for a Date, Hot Spot, Great for Brunch, Great for Lunch, Creative Cuisine, Casual, Neighborhood Gem, Worth the Drive, Bar Seating, Fun
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Jacksonville)·Dined 3 days ago

While the food tastes great the service was disappointing. We frequently received meals that were not ours and didn’t receive two plates that we ordered.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service2
value2

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined 3 days ago

We were seated right up front near the entrance, which we were worried about at first due to crowds and the draft from the door opening, but soon realized it was more ideal since all the other tables were very crammed together. The small plates were very small and it would only be worth it to eat here if you do the unlimited option. However the service was quick, and the food was tasty!

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Tapas, Good for Anniversaries, Creative Cuisine, Tasting Menu, Good for a Date, Hot Spot, Spicy, Worth the Drive, Good for Birthdays, Special Occasion, Neighborhood Gem, Romantic, Handcrafted Cocktails
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Houston)·Dined 3 days ago

Ambar was in the top 5 dining experiences of my life, no exaggeration. Every single dish was excellent, and the Balkan Experience menu option is an unbelievably good deal. This restaurant was recommended to me by my Serbian in-laws, and it was, as they described, authentic and delicious food. Highly recommend, and will return next time I am in D.C.

Tags: Worth the Drive, Bar Seating, Tasting Menu, Good Vegetarian Options, Authentic, Romantic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (St. Louis)·Dined 3 days ago

Just fantastic! Unique cuisine that is absolutely delicious. Natasha and the rest of the staff was very attentive. Fun place.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Richmond)·Dined 5 days ago

Really enjoyable small plate spread. I would only suggest going for an all you can eat fixed price. The plates are quite small, but very good!

Tags: Casual, Tasting Menu
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service4
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined 5 days ago

Excellent special occasion dining with Valentine's day menu. I won't begrudge the wait staff a packed dining room, though it did take them over 15 minutes to take drink orders. Food and ambience excellent, wait staff was friendly with great recommendations, and incredible all you can eat and drink menu will definitely have us returning!

Tags: Special Occasion, Tapas, Good for Birthdays, Authentic, Fun
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service4
value4

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined 6 days ago

My wife and I love trying new food with a strong affinity for anything that serves scratch made hummus. This place was a great find (also avail. in Arlington) you MUST do the Balkan Experience which is all you can eat tapas, also add on the $15 all you can drink option you won't regret it either (just make sure to uber...). Everything we had was delicious and most dishes had some unique flare like the tuna tartare with a almond+date spread or the pulled pork over mash served with a sour slaw. Anyways, we will definitely be back!

Tags: Special Occasion, Fit for Foodies, Tapas, Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on February 11, 2018

Amazing food, amazing prices and amazing service.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 11, 2018

Ambar has an incredible brunch! $39 for all you can eat and drink is a steal, and the food is amazing! Bloody Marys were spicy (yum!) and the different types of mimosas were all divine. The service was great and the place was hopping. I can't wait to go back!

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Casual, Cozy, Authentic, Great for Lunch, Good for a Date, Tapas, Great for Brunch, Fun, Special Occasion, Creative Cuisine
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 10, 2018

We did the Balkan experience for dinner and were blown away by the food, the service, and the value! Drinks (some wine, some beer, some cocktails) were included. We loved it. You can order, and re-order, and try literally the entire menu.

Tags: Fun, Spicy, Fit for Foodies, Hot Spot, Tasting Menu
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on February 10, 2018

The atmosphere is fun and the bar offers great cocktails - we did have a little trouble finding a spot to sit/stand and it's a pretty tight squeeze if you end up standing in the bar area. Staff is whizzing by all the time, so you have to stay out of the way. Despite that, when we did get seated our food was amazing and the tapas selection is huge. You can do unlimited plates and drinks for under $50 a person which was a great bargain considering what we ordered. Had at least 3 cocktails and lost count of the number of plates we ordered. It was loud, but our group had a blast anyways. Would definitely go back and would recommend to friends!

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Fun, Hot Spot, Tapas
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience3
service3
value4

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 10, 2018

Retirement dinner

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 9, 2018

The food is amazing. The service could be a bit better - more servers perhaps?

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service4

 
 (Denver)·Dined on February 6, 2018

This was truly a meal I will remember for ever, or until I come back here again. We decided to have the $49 "tapas" style meal which included drinks. The food here was outstanding, quick, simple, delicious, and unlike anything I've ever had. The food felt homey, but not rustic, elegant, but not pretentious, and delicious, but not fake. I could list you the 40 things we had and how they all tasted, but this review would be pages long.

Here's the main part: it's delicious, real, amazing food that can compete with any restaurant I've been to. It's better than most of the $150 meals I've had in my lifetime.

GO! you won't be disappointed.

Tags: Casual, Good for Groups, Hot Spot, Tapas, Fit for Foodies, Handcrafted Cocktails, Healthy, Authentic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Chicago)·Dined on February 4, 2018

Food was ok, but overall experience was good

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food2
ambience5
service5
value3

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 4, 2018

Our group of 3 did the Balkan experience for brunch. It's a great value with unlimited drinks and small plates, and everything was delicious! The savory bread pudding and selection of benedicts were especially noteworthy. Only a few oddities: 1) we were taken upstairs, which only has high top tables, for our 10:30am reservation when the downstairs was completely empty and has low comfortable seats, so we asked to sit downstairs and we were taken to the very last table in the back, as if we were being punished (lol) and 2) we kept having to ask for spoons (3 times) which was bizarre since they should expect that with shared dishes and coffee. Will definitely come back for the food, though!

Tags: Good for Birthdays, Creative Cuisine
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience3
service3
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 3, 2018

Food was delicious, service was fantastic! Couldn’t ask more for a fabulous birthday celebration

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 3, 2018

Ambar's brunch is definitely one to rave about. I thoroughly enjoyed the excellent food, cozy decor and great service from our server Ljubodra! The Balkan burger, mushroom crepe and salmon Benedict were just a few of my favorite dishes. Everything was truly excellent and this place has officially been added to my list of top five favorite brunches in the city. Looking forward to trying them for dinner as well!

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Great for Brunch, Good for a Date, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 3, 2018

The staff was very friendly and prompt however the brunch food is so over cooked. Nothing tasted fresh and instead tasted like it was sitting under a heat lamp for a few hours.

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food2
ambience4
service5
value3

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on February 3, 2018

I've been to the Ambar for dinner in Arlington, but this was my first experience at the DC location and me and 4 friends went for brunch because we heard good things.

Service was good, food was great and of course, the drinks were great. The brunch has a 2 hour limit, which is plenty enough time, just good to be aware. I really liked the option of brunch drinks as there were different types of mimosas. I have a friend who can't take too much of the acidity in OJ so I'm definitely going to recommend this place the next time she visits.

Will definitely come back anytime of the day!

Tags: Tapas, Great for Lunch, Great for Brunch, Good for Groups, Authentic, Fun
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 2, 2018

Service was great! We asked for recommendations and he was able to give us very quick recommendations and very courteous

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on February 1, 2018

Serves Balkan cuisine tapas. Excellent way to sample different dishes. Great to go with a group.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Good for Groups, Fun
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Miami)·Dined on January 29, 2018

This restaurant was great! The food and the service was top! Our waiter, Ljubodrag was incredibly good. His recommendations were great and knows his wines well.

Tags: Notable Wine List, Business Meals, Creative Cuisine, Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on January 28, 2018

The $49 unlimited small plates and drinks option made this dining experience one like no other! The food was delectable (especially the mussels, almond crusted chicken and fried sourdough bread), our server was amazing, and the drinks were classic! I will definitely be visiting the place again to try more of the menu items, and I highly recommend trying the Mango Lemonade with Whiskey instead of Vodka ;-)

Tags: Good for Birthdays, Special Occasion, People Watching, Neighborhood Gem, Sunday Lunch, Creative Cuisine, Good Vegetarian Options
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined on January 28, 2018

This was our third time going to Ambar for Restaurant Week and it never fails to disappoint. The Balkan experience makes for a fun meal, and ensures that you can actually get full of tapas. Plus they have great options for all diets, including gluten free (they were very attentive to my celiac). Overall, a great meal and a really fun night.

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Fit for Foodies, Cozy, Neighborhood Gem, Good Vegetarian Options, Tapas, Romantic, Special Occasion, Tasting Menu, Gluten Free Options
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Miami)·Dined on January 28, 2018

Ambar was delightful. There are so many options. I wish the shrimp wasn't wrapped in bacon but other than that the meal was delicious.

Tags: Tasting Menu, Cozy, Tapas, Fit for Foodies
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience3
service3
value4

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on January 28, 2018

Went for Sunday Brunch, food was awesome! The "balkan experience" offers endless servings of all the food on the brunch menu and bottomless drinks. They just kept the food coming and coming, we didn't even have to get up from the table, and sampled just about everything. Our server, Sean, was incredible! He described all the dishes well, was funny and engaging, even with our 4 year old. I highly recommend this restaurant!

Tags: Good for Birthdays, Fun, Tapas, Casual, Neighborhood Gem
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Detroit)·Dined on January 28, 2018

Had Balkan experience brunch with friends and were absolutely delighted with the experience. Ambar never lets us down! Our waitress Barbora was fantastic!!!!!

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on January 27, 2018

The place was packed and our server had his hands full but he still made time to linger with us and make us feel well-cared for.

Tags: Good for Birthdays, Creative Cuisine
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on January 26, 2018

Went for restaurant week and was delighted that the menu didn’t skimp on food. For two hours you got to choose (most) everything off the menu, and for an extra $14 had unlimited drinks from a select menu. Service was impeccable, our waitress knew when to come by to ask if we were ready to order more food. The food was exceptional, each plate was better than the last. I’d love to come back as this was a great experience.

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food5
ambience4
service5
value5

vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on January 26, 2018

Ambar was truly a unique dining experience. The staff was attentive and came frequently to refill our food and drink orders. The $49 all you can eat and drink option is truly the way to go so you can try almost anything on the menu. The fact that this place has mojitos on the all you can drink menu made the deal even better as this restaurant unique and memorable.

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food5
ambience4
service4
value5

 
 (Chicago)·Dined on January 26, 2018

It was restaurant week in DC. What a great experience. We got to try nearly the entire menu. All delicious and unique.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on January 26, 2018

The meal was outstanding. There was a large variety of food to choose from. However the bottomless drinks were not that impressive (tasted like juice) however our waiter was the bartender and pepped up our drinks. Over all i would give this spot a 9 out of 10. There was a 2 hour limit on the table. That was unusual to our group.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on January 25, 2018

The Balkan Experience dinner is worth every penny. Food is delicious. Highly recommend. Come with an appetite and stretchy pants.

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food5
ambience5
service5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on January 25, 2018

Our seven-person dining party really enjoyed the $49 Restaurant Week specials! Ambar's staff was really helpful with helping our group explore the menu and keeping our glasses full. 100% recommend this for Restaurant Week and special events.

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Tapas, Good for Anniversaries, Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on January 25, 2018

We had a lovely time. The food and service were excellent. It was restaurant week, so it was a tremendous value, too. We enjoyed the zucchini soup, the sliders, too many others to recount.

Tags: Fun, Tapas, Tasting Menu
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on January 24, 2018

Went for restaurant week winter 2018. Had a great meal, was able to try a ton of small plates for a reasonable price and enjoyed the tasty cocktails as well! Very attentive, friendly service. Would recommend!

Tags: Great for Brunch, Creative Cuisine, Gluten Free Options, Good Vegetarian Options, Handcrafted Cocktails, Good for a Date, Tasting Menu, Fit for Foodies, Bar Seating
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience3
service5
value4

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