Mesob 213 High St, Northcote | mesob.com.au
By Isabelle Oderberg
It seems only fitting that when Naz Mahari and Dawit Kebede met ten years ago and fell in love, that the venue was an Ethiopian restaurant in Melbourne.
Since then, they’ve built a life together and given birth to two children – one is their two-year-old daughter and the other is their Northcote-based Ethiopian restaurant, Mesob. On the weekends, you’ll regularly find a queue of people out the door waiting for tables. The night we visited, at least 30 people were turned away while we waited for our seats. “This place came about because it was both of our dreams, but Dawit’s passion,” Mahari explains over the beautiful Gambian music playing just feet away at the front of the venue. “He’s an amazing chef and always wanted to have his own restaurant. It was the right time, B E A T
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because we thought, ‘If it fails we can go back to normal life’. I was working in social work and Dawit had his own business.” The reason Mesob’s food is so good is that the team refuse to shirk on quality. Moreover, Kebede is a stickler for perfection. “We went to Ethiopia for two weeks in April because we were running out of supplies,” Mahari explains. “The berbere – a spice mix used in many Ethiopian dishes – is made by Kebede’s family in Ethiopia, so we ship it in.” The couple also make their own injera where possible, only buying in for busy periods like Friday and Saturday nights. But the injera they