Since 2009, Owner-Chef Ahmed Obo has been feeding Santa Feans and tourists alike the subtle and delicious flavors of his native East African Cuisine. Originally from Lamu, an island off the coast of Kenya, Chef Ahmed learned to cook when he was a boy in his mother’s kitchen. Upon immigrating to the United States, Chef Ahmed found himself in the kitchen once again has been cooking professionally for over 20 years. Opening Jambo Café was a long-time dream.
Jambo Café and Chef Ahmed are winners: “Best International Cuisine” for 10 years running and “Best Chef” from 2015 to 2022 in the Santa Fe Reporter’s “Best of Santa Fe.” Chef Ahmed took home the "Best of Cream Soup" category at the 2018 Souper Bowl benefiting The Food Depot. Jambo Café was featured on The Food Networks, Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives in 2013 and again in 2023. Pasatiempo reviewer, Nouf Al-Qasimi said, “Obo’s food is spirited, and at its best, it strikes a superb balance between vibrant and subtle, making it better than most of what’s being served locally at many times the price.”
In 2016, Chef Ahmed Obo published his first cookbook, The Jambo Café Cookbook: My Journey from Africa to America. Part memoir and part cookbook, Chef Ahmed shares 70 recipes including traditional Swahili fare, Jambo Café favorites, and completely new creations. Ask your server for details or order online at jamboimports.com
This restaurant accepts reservations during Restaurant Week.
2010 Cerrillos Road
Santa Fe, NM 87505