Zemam's is owned and operated by Amanuel Gebremariam. He and his family started the business in 1994, in a small rented house that he converted simply into a tiny restaurant using recipes he remembered his mother cooking back home. Wanting to pay tribute to her, he named the restaurant after her.
Since that time, Zemam's has grown but remains at the same site on Broadway Blvd in Tucson, AZ. Temptations to expand have always been resisted because customers continually comment on the "cozy atmosphere" of the original site.
Amanuel, is originally from Asmara, Eritrea and Cindy, his wife, grew up in Cincinnati, Ohio.
Their love story began in 1983 in a refugee camp in eastern Sudan and continued to other locales including Washington DC, Nouakchott, Mauritania (West Africa) and then to Tucson where they raised their six children.