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About Kush

Sudanese & Middle Eastern cuisines, inspired by family recipes and influenced by global flavors .

I was born along Sudan’s Blue Nile and began my food journey in my mom’s kitchen. I shadowed her in the markets and while she cooked her signature stews, dips, and falafel. I spent many Ramadan holidays helping her prepare the Iftar meal and becoming the chef I am today. 

At 18, I left Sudan during the war. Life took me to Syria, Egypt, Thailand, Denmark, and finally to the United States. Each country influenced my culinary career. I sharpened my Middle Eastern cooking skills in Syria; learned the restaurant industry in Egypt and Denmark; and founded and opened Abu Layla (Arabic for Father of Layla) in Thailand. Now here I am in the U.S., where everything is coming together.

My wife, who I met in Bangkok, also comes from a rich food culture—Louisiana Creole. We joke that the fastest way to her heart was through a pot of okra. During the holidays, I have a friendly kitchen “rivalry” with my father-in-law, a talented and sophisticated cook.

When I’m not working, you’ll find me cycling, gardening, and spending time with loved ones (mostly feeding them). In 2022, I expanded Abu Layla by adding Kush food truck, bringing my unique perspective on Sudanese and Middle Eastern cuisines to DMV foodies.

4.69 (29 reviews)

Darren L.

May 2024

Delicious Shawarma wrap, decent fries (get ketchup), would order and buy again

Elaine J.

April 2024

Food tasted great and was ready at the time we requested

Debra L.

November 2023

The chicken swarma was excellent; falafel wraps were pretty good (a bit bland); loved the baba ganoush. The wraps were missing tahini sauce - they were not only bland but dry as well.

Debbie S.

September 2023

Great flavor and very satisfying

Darren L.

September 2023

Despite being seasoned the fries still taste rather bland, the shawarma bowl is delicious and I will be recommending it to everyone in the office

Mark M.

July 2023

It was all incredibly tasty and my family loved it!

Jon S.

July 2023

No improvements, excellent baba ganoush, hummus, and falafel!

Samantha L.

March 2023

It was amazing! I don’t like a lot of salt on my fries so I was worried when I saw him dousing them with seasoning. Haha! No need to worry it was perfect flavor not too salty! Wow

Stu G.

March 2023

Food was good. Just wish they would prepare the food before sending message that order is ready. Nurses can’t wait around very long, we have patients waiting for us

Mihae D.

March 2023

Preordered online for 12pm on a busy Monday. We never received an order ready text so we went down at 12:30pm and they made it for us then.