Ambar - Arlington

4.6
2895 reviews
$31 to $50
Tapas / Small Plates
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.

Safety precautions

Cleaning & Sanitising
  • Surfaces sanitised between seatings
  • Common areas deep cleaned daily
  • Digital, disposable or sanitised menu provided
  • Sanitiser or wipes provided for customers
  • Contactless payment available
  • Sealed or wrapped utensils used
Physical distancing
  • Limited number of seated diners
  • Distancing maintained in common areas
  • Extra space between tables
Protective equipment
  • Waitstaff wear masks
  • Diners must wear masks unless eating or drinking
Screening
  • Sick staff prohibited in the workplace
What 2895 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.6based on recent ratings
4.6
Food
4.4
Service
4.5
Ambience
4.4
Value
Noise · Moderate
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SM
SimeonM
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined 2 days ago
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Our server was terrific, as she explained what to order sand when!

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

We had a great time! I’ve been to Ambar in Capital Hill several times and always loved it, but Ivan made the experience at the Clarendon location better than ever.

MM
vipMikeM
Washington DC
20 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

The restaurant has a New York City or Boston vibe with a downstairs dining area. We did the Ambar experience with another couple and loved it. Food was amazing. Never waiting on food. If there is something you love, ask for it again!

AM
AmandaM
Atlanta
1 review
Dined 7 days ago
Overall5Food5Service4Ambience4

It was some of the best food I’ve ever had and the price was phenomenal

OT
OpenTable Diner
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined 7 days ago
Overall5Food5Service4Ambience5

Great food and overall experience!

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Washington DC
1 review
Dined 7 days ago
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

We celebrated our anniversary here and had a great experience! The service was phenomenal, food was delicious, and the atmosphere was lively. Would recommend to anyone!

MG
vipMeganG
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on January 12, 2022
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience4

love ambar, great service, lovely staff and AMAZING food. never disappoints

OT
OpenTable Diner
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on January 9, 2022
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Great food, great service. Recommend getting the ‘ambar experience’ option, definitely the best value with the best chance to try everything

M
Mrwgs
1 review
Dined on January 9, 2022
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Ambar is always a great experience with a unique menu full of variety. They have raised their dinner prices and the prices don't include dessert, unfortunately.

JL
vipJjLt
San Francisco
82 reviews
Dined on January 8, 2022
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience4

It was our first time at Ambar, but it will not be our last. Our server, Jeffrey, was fabulous. We got the Ambar Experience. He made great recommendations of food and wine. The pacing was great. We got a couple of dishes at a time, which aloud us to dine. Everything was delicious, but the steak tartare, stuffed cabbage and lamb were especially delicious. We ate downstairs, which I would recommend. It was quieter and there was more room between tables. It was only my wife and I. Next time, we will bring more people, so we can taste more.

FF
vipFoodForLife
Washington DC
42 reviews
Dined on January 4, 2022
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

We decided to return since it had been a while and thoroughly enjoyed our dining experience. After reviewing the menu, we decided on a few dishes that we wanted to try and left it to our waitress to surprise us with other dishes for a true dining experience. Be sure to try dishes from each section of the menu. The veal soup and braised beef short ribs are hearty food and the kabob and chicken skewers were equally delicious.

R
Rakia
1 review
Dined on January 2, 2022
Overall5Food4Service4Ambience5

Great spot for lunch or dinner. Balkan food served mezza style. I've spent a lot of time in the Balkans and this food is authentic, though small portions are very unusual in the region. In fact, Ambar has a quite popular Belgrade location with a similar menu. I recommend having the all you can eat menu so you can try a lot of things.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Houston
1 review
Dined on January 2, 2022
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Host was super nice and accommodating and the server was very attentive. Food was great as well!! Will return soon to eat and people watch

CG
CourthouseGrace
1 review
Dined on January 2, 2022
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Ambar has my favorite brunch in the DMV. The $40 all inclusive brunch w/ 25¢ drinks is a fantastic deal. Take a Lyft or Metro because you will most definitely be in a food/mimosa coma on your way out.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Washington DC
6 reviews
Dined on January 1, 2022
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

We had the unlimited option and tried almost everything on the menu. If you love to try new things and drink delicious cocktails - this is the place for you

OT
OpenTable Diner
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on January 1, 2022
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Excellent~

Report
OT
OpenTable Diner
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on December 31, 2021
Overall1Food5Service2Ambience5

I usually always have a great time at Ambar but this time was so disappointing. I made a reservation 3 weeks in advance for New Years because I wanted to spend an special moment at a place I really enjoy. I came with my girlfriend originally sitting at the bar for a reservation of 9pm through 12:30am the bar tender suggested we go downstairs as the first floor would be closing as I sit downstairs at the bar i come into this very poorly lit room with no TV or any type of entertainment we had eaten a few dishes and drank and by about 10-10:30 we were falling asleep because of how boring it was and lack of entertainment I wanted to stay till New Years because I had in mind there would be something special but all there was, was a guy counting down to 10 from behind a DJ booth and I paid $300 so disappointing and a terrible New Years experience I won’t forget

OT
OpenTable Diner
Birmingham
4 reviews
Dined on December 31, 2021
Overall4Food3Service5Ambience4

The Food is usually very good but their New Years menu was underwhelming and just average. The “grilled vegetables” were sautéed and then served in some sauce that made them soggy. It was much more of a tasting menu than small plates menu - many of selections only had 1 serving so you couldn’t really share it.

DC
DCSV
Washington DC
5 reviews
Dined on December 31, 2021
Overall3Food3Service3Ambience2

The food that should have been hot when brought to the table was cold. Servers would fly by dropping dishes off at the table with no comment.

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on December 31, 2021
Overall1Food1Service1Ambience4

The price was set way too high. When I booked a reservation on opengable it said the price has changed and went up to I think $44.95 or 49.95? Something like that. When i went the price was $89.95 and this was for NYE special but it should have clearly stated this information at thr time of booking. We couldnt even walk out and leave or cancel because they had cancellation fee. This is ridiculous

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on December 31, 2021
Overall5Food5Service4Ambience5

Favorite place to show my family and friends what Serbian food tastes like! Great time, price, and food.

SC
SuzC
Washington DC
12 reviews
Dined on December 31, 2021
Overall2Food5Service1Ambience5

We have been introducing our kids to new cuisines. Since they haven’t had Balkan food, we thought we should bring them to Ámbar, one of our favorite restaurant.

However, the hostess sat us in a corner next to the kitchen even though there was ample seating available in the restaurant. We didn’t say anything thinking the restaurant was spacing out guests. But we realized that was not the case.

Additionally, the waiter forgot several of our orders and never brought them. It was a bit disappointing.

OT
OpenTable Diner
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on December 31, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience4

Lunch best - because you can try everything. But don’t try going back to work after!!

RD
vipRayD
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on December 30, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Food and service was very good. Good price value. Was very loud.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Tampa
7 reviews
Dined on December 29, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Very good food and service

AK
AggieK
New Orleans
3 reviews
Dined on December 29, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience4

The best flavors I encountered since times immemorial. All the dishes are perfectly and elegantly balanced with seasonings and sauces of unmatched quality. A couple of definite favorites would surely be: grilled shrimp on sweet corn purée (much better than even very good shrimp and grits), smoked sausage, asparagus with quail egg, stuffed peppers, and steak tartare. Just to mention s few, but everything else is also fantastic, and I’ve tried most of their delightful tapas. I could dine there every day. Pleasant outside seating, but unfortunately loud inside.

m
vipmff504
New Orleans
6 reviews
Dined on December 29, 2021
Overall5Food4Service5Ambience5

We weren't familiar with the cuisine, but the staff was very helpful. We had wonderful meal!

LD
LaDolceVita
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined on December 29, 2021
Overall4Food4Service5Ambience4

My favorite place for lunch in Clarendon! The express menu offers a wide variety of flavorful options at a very reasonable price. Great for groups because everyone can find something they like.

AM
AmyM
1 review
Dined on December 28, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Delicious food and a fun concept for date or family time!

G
Gobzi
1 review
Dined on December 24, 2021
Overall2Food2Service4Ambience4

Cute restaurant with hard working, accommodating staff. The food is mediocre and the prix fixe menu isn't worth the high cost, especially since it doesn't include drinks and dessert.

SK
vipSarahKate
Naples
9 reviews
Dined on December 23, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Delicious! Repeat customers. Wonderful atmosphere and service, too!

KG
KG124
1 review
Dined on December 21, 2021
Overall4Food4Service5Ambience4

Did the all-you-can-eat and it was fantastic. Great variety, delicious portions, good came quickly. My husband and I each had favorites (cheese pie and cevapi are outstanding) but nothing was “a loser.” We are until we were stuffed, and then some.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on December 21, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Fantastic food and superb service 👍

HE
HEHEHEHEHE
Baltimore
2 reviews
Dined on December 19, 2021
Overall4Food5Service3Ambience5

I love this location. It's a great deal esp since Cava changed their menu after COVID happened and a lot of my favorite offerings left the menu. I love the fact that you can get healthier food during brunch like salads and spreads. Only improvement area would be in the speed at which food is brought back to the table. The two times I've been here, I'll order a few items on my first go-round with the waiter and it'll be an hour until I get at least one of those items that I initially ordered. It makes me think that they don't have a good system for keeping track of tables actual orders and just gives food to whoever ordered it last or who has the largest party. I hope that improves in the future but overall I love this place.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Charleston
1 review
Dined on December 18, 2021
Overall2Food3Service3Ambience1

Host was rude! Usually one of my favorite restaurants, but as the adage goes your hostess/ host sets the mood for meal!

N
Naytro
Washington DC
8 reviews
Dined on December 18, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

The Taste of Ambar unlimited brunch was amazing--food was delicious and great value. Our server, Andrew, was fantastic and never missed a beat!

MH
MichaelH
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined on December 17, 2021
Overall2Food3Service2Ambience2

The value has really gone down substantially at this restaurant. Priced too high for the quality and quantity of food offered. Do not recommend anymore.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on December 17, 2021
Overall2Food2Service4Ambience5

Ambiance was great, food was average

XD
XinshenD
Washington DC
1 review