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  1. Enough of Etete, which is tired, boring and full of yuppies. Zenebech is the best Ethiopian in town, and the gored-gored is the best raw meat dish you will have this year.
  2. Surprised there isn't a thread for this place yet. It has, for my money, the best Ethiopian food in Shaw/U Street. Wonderful veggie platters, plus delicious kitfo and doro wat. Note that they don't have fuul or chicken tibs though (just beef and lamb). Great takeout too; tons of food at great prices. Anyway, I'm posting because of this exciting, yet concerning article. Chercher is expanding, which is great, but the article contains a tidbit that I desperately hope will turn out not to be the case: ""Abebe says he’s also started work on a 60-seat Columbia Heights location at 3608 14th Street NW that’s scheduled to open in February. That Chercher, the smallest of the bunch, will house a large kitchen in the back where staffers will prepare and cook all of the food for the entire chain. Abebe says he’s installing a central kitchen, in part, to maintain quality control across the brand. "Ethiopian Chain Chercher Plots Massive Area Expansion" by Lenore Adkins on dc.eater.com (*) “The problem is … they don’t cook the same,” Abebe told Eater DC. “Because why does it take a while to cook a stew, like chicken stew long hours? So we (will) cook in one place so everywhere people go, they get the same kind of food.”" They're going to make all the food in Columbia Heights and then, what, reheat it? This sounds like a no-good, very bad plan.
  3. I think I found a gem! It's been a while since I last had Ethiopian cuisine. I always enjoyed it, but this joint was a cut above anything I had before. My dining partner and I must have said some variation of "wow, this is good!" twenty times last night as we dove into a platter of veggie sambusa, stuffed jalapenos (sinig), kitfo, lentils (misir wot), yellow peas (kik wot), collard greens (gomen), cabbage (tikil gomen), chickpea stew (shiro), potato stew (dinich wot), and of course plenty of injera. We found it impossible to figure out which was the weakest dish. Each ingredient in the sambusa was distinct, rather than a pasty mess as I've had elsewhere. All of the vegetable and legume preparations tasted so bright and fresh. Often with these stewed dishes, the taste and texture brings to mind a vat stewing away until it's mush. That wasn't the case here. I asked the waiter to bring out the kitfo just as he'd like it. He claimed he liked it medium rare which surprised me since I thought it was generally raw. Perhaps he had seen too many Americans send it back. Anyway, I had it medium rare and the flavors were astounding. Total damage with tax and tip was about $50 and we walked out stuffed. The service was friendly and helpful. If you look at the menu, you'll see that they serve breakfast. That'll be my next trip. Enatye Ethiopian Restaurant
  4. I've only been there once and I know it's Eritrean, but... I really liked Harambe at 18th and U, which was very cheap but tasted just as good as Dukem, Zed's or Meskerem. (although I didn't order the kitfo). Other than that (and I'm sure people will jump all over me for saying this) I think Zed's is one of the better places in the city, mainly because the service is much better there than other places. I have to be honest though...I haven't been anywhere further east than 11th and U. --- 07/05/05 - Queen Makeda (Halloween) Enjera (cheezepowder) Langano (DanielK) Ethiopic (ppsailor1) Axum (Waitman) Walia (Simon) Meskerem (cheezepowder)
  5. Washington City Paper Food Editor Laura Hayes lists the Kitfo Sandwich at Langano Restaurant (8305 Georgia Ave.) as one of her favorite fall sandwiches in D.C.: https://www.sourceofthespring.com/silver-spring/kitfo-sandwich/
  6. Driving home this evening, I spied a place just off Georgia Ave in Silver Spring on Bonifant called Gelato! (Yes, the exlamation point is part of the name) I've either been napping every time we pass by this place, or it is relatively new. Not even sure if it's open yet--anyone know anything about it? Good, bad, indifferent? Feel free to add to the list other places that you've spotted and may be wondering about...
  7. The former location of Ethio Express Grill at 952 Sligo Ave. in Silver Spring opens today, Feb. 8, as Debab Restaurant under new owners. Ash Edossa and his wife Abebech “Emu” Taddese took over the business in January: https://www.sourceofthespring.com/business/debab-restaurant-to-open-in-ethio-express-location/
  8. We finally made it to the new Ethiopian place on East Glebe just off Rt 1 in Alexandria (I guess I'd call it east Arlandria). Very quiet on a weekday lunch. I hope they get more customers, because we thought it was very good. We had lamb tibs and the veggie combo. Both were good, nicely spiced - I like Ethiopian a lot, but I don't think I can call myself well informed, so I'm not exactly sure how to describe why I thought it was good. I guess I'd say that everything tasted distinct, not muddy flavors like I've had at Ethiopian places I like less. Service was quick and friendly. Good place to have close by.
  9. mama desta's restaurant on georgia avenue is the first taste of ethiopian cuisine i recall a couple of decades ago, and we had some favorites in adams morgan for a while before eventually tiring of the food. but reading todd kliman has rekindled our interest, and our initial return to ethiopian revealed that there are once again some new things happening in these kichens, whose origins in washington were full of novelty. we thought we would be eating at his favorite ethiopian restaurant in the area last night, sodere. finding it closed, we turned the corner of ninth and u to find etete just a couple of doors down. this is a narrow restaurant, with eight tables for two and a few tables with bar stools and a small bar. its furnishings are surprisingly contemporary, and it has the appearance of wanting to be half a bar hangout, although the selections, which include alcohol, are a bit limited. i had a harrar beer, which was very mellow and i would say it had a note of honey. it was a good accompaniment to the food. we ordered a fasten vegetable sampler that included good renditions of greens, lentils, potatoes and carrots, and a small lettuce and tomato salad that was a bit out of place. the centerpiece of our meal was tikul, a mound of ground (whipped) beef, and it stole the show. soft, buttery, (my wife thinks cheesy) and with a mysterious (to us) spice, with a great, unique flavor. lentil sambusas were soft and slow-burn spicy, and the injera had a more interesting, tripe-ish texture than the smoother versions served in the old days. the waitresses here are glamorous and nice, although they may not have enough command of the english language to tell you what's in your beef. for that, you might attempt to get the answer from the chef herself, who was totally engrossed in her preparations from what we could see through the swinging door to the kitchen at the end of the room. i'm not sure who's allowed to invade the kitchen, but one customer did, probably a regular or friend or relative, dressed up as some sort of chieftain, and he exited back through the restaurant a bit later with a big plastic bag of carry out. the disappearing into the kitchen for extended periods includes the waitresses, who are apologetic about their long absences without really having to be. we were well aware that we had entered another time zone, and appreciated the leisurely pace. a solitary diner, on the other hand, was in and out quickly. on a sunday night, there were about a dozen customers over an hour-and-a-half span. outside and after dark, this may not be the safest neighborhood to be strolling around in, but there is a metro station just one block away if you're worried.
  10. A non-foodie friend suggested Lucy Ethiopian Restaurant for dinner last weekend and we came away quite impressed. +1 ordered the Girgiro, the chef's own creation that came out on a "fire plate" - very tasty and tender and very generously portioned. I ordered the Gurage kitfo rare and it was excellent - nicely warmed with lots of flavor and generously portioned. We sampled a bit of the lamb tibs and vegan platters ordered by others - they were pretty good for what they are but not nearly as good as the Girgiro or Gurage kitfo. The injera was good and they also serve a good kocho (a chewy thicker flatbread that's served in wedges, which is also available at Enat). The service can be a bit slow and erratic at times in the busy restaurant, but it's actually quite nice and attentive for an Ethiopian restaurant. The menu is quite extensive, so there's a more here to lure us back.
  11. This place has been changed to Toscana Grill. The organic bent is gone. I was not a fan of the old place so hadn't paid much attention to it to notice the change despite walking past it everyday. It is now more of a red-checkered tablecloth neighborhood Italian place (that is they would be if they had tablecloths). They've had people out on the plaza handing out samples and trying to let people know about the change. I went tonight and it was ok. I had penne with sausage and meatball in marinara sauce. The sauce was good but a tad sweet and the meatball didn't have much flavor and a fluffy texture (yeah, I know fluffy isn't really a meatball description but it is what comes to mind). The sausage was the highlight -- nicely seasoned and not too fatty or too dry. The serving was on the smaller side compared to the oversized portions you see so often, but was definitely enough for me for dinner. I was given a sad looking basket of garlic bread where a few small pieces were lost in a too-large basket. It was made of pizza dough and nicely charred and very garlicky. Made me think it would be worth it to try their pizza. They had a very limited menu of pastas with assorted sauces and you could add your choice of protein and pizza. Online shows a far more extensive menu. The service was attentive with several people checking in on me throughout the meal who seemed genuinely interested in how I was enjoying my meal. They are offering several specials and gave me a $5 discount on my $14 dish. I think they are still working through their opening kinks. I won't be rushing back, but I will go back after they have some time to settle in.
  12. Spotted this last week walking home from my new job, stopped in for lunch today. Apparently they opened a few weeks ago. Lunch was an order of Misir Wat to go, which came with a small helping of collard greens, a small helping tomato/onion/pepper salad, and a second piece of injera. The lentils had a nice flavor with a little bit of heat but nothing searing. There is also a breakfast menu with ful and fir fir and egg sandwiches. Hours are 7-6, maybe 7-7. maybe. It was entirely pleasant and I'll probably hit this once every week or two. No idea if there is any relation to the Bunna in New York, probably not. They also have a full coffee menu and sell beans from Nagadi Coffee in Silver Spring.
  13. Balagger, the Ethiopian place that went into the Jackie's space, appears to be open. They also have an outpost in Skyline. The owners of Balagger also opened a coffee shop called Ground where Sidebar used to be.
  14. I'm not well versed on the history, but during the 1960s to mid 1970s, Ethiopia had a kicking jazz scene. Some background: "Ethio-Jazz - The Amazing Story of Ethiopian Jazz from London to Addis" by Lilian Diarra on theculturetrip.com This music is having a bit of a revival these days, with contemporary bands drawing inspiration. One such band is DC's own Feedel Band. They play the first Thursday of the month at Bossa Bistro + Lounge in Adams Morgan, which if you are into world music, jazz, funk should be on your radar. Feedel playing live (which of course is the best way to experience their music)
  15. If you are trying to stay in the burbs, Harar Mesob on 23rd in Arlington near Crystal City is tops.
  16. Sis and I got back from our east coast road trip, where we enjoyed Maine lobster in Bar Harbor, amazing Italian in Boston, Ramen in NYC, and a good burger outside of Hartford, CT. We were starving last night and were having great trouble coming up with an idea for dinner. I was driving and told to put the smart phone down (good call, sis!) so she worked on finding a place. She said, "there's a place with a 5 star average in old town but it only has 44 reviews, it looks Ethiopian". It's not a large number, but still, that's impressive and she had never had Ethiopian. So, before reading the rest, two points: 1) I don't really like Ethiopian food. Ive been to etete, dukem, zenebach, the fancy one on H, the one in Georgetown, eyo sports bar in Alexandria - probably ten total experiences. I liked Eyo best, didn't love the rest, and stopped going if I'm choosing. 2) I'm recovering from a terrible sinusitis and my taste wasn't perfect. It's on a quiet street in old town, away from King St's hustle and hustle. I think it used to be Caboose? Anyway, we were the only customers and they invited us in. We ordered quick - sister got a side salad and I got lentil soup. Dressing was more like yogurt sauce like tzatziki and sister liked it. Lentil soup was hearty, tasted like ... yellow lentils. Spiced but not heavily and I liked it. For our entrees we shared the lamb wot and the vegan sampler with injera and rice. Here's my thing with with wot. I just really think Indian lamb curries are a better version of wot. I do, and it may be show my overall primitiveness with food or an insensitive palate, but it's my opinion. Anyway, there's was good- spiced nicely with hints of cinnamon which I'd never had in wot before. The vegan plate was red lentils, potatoes, greens, a small salad with onions and jalapeí±os, and something else that wasn't memorable. We liked it. Small portion of lamb, even though it was most expensive thing on menu. Vegetables were good, but non lentils a little bland. For my sis, it has piqued her interest in Ethiopian, and for me, I'm going to give it another try. I'm curious for someone with a better palate for Ethiopian food will think. No booze here, btw, not sure if they are byob S
  17. Highland Origins a newly opened coffee place across the street from Addis Ababa. They seem to specialize in Ethiopian coffees (no surprise there) and have free WiFi. I had a pretty good drip coffee today.
  18. Anyone been to Selam on 15th and U Street? May 11, 2007 - "Selam is Getting into the Groove" by Fritz Hahn on washingtonpost.com
  19. From Frozen Tropics: Soft Opening tonight from 5pm-10pm Send reservation requests to: info@ethiopicrestaurant.com http://www.ethiopicrestaurant.com/ Very excited for this new Ethiopian place.
  20. Abay Market cannot handle large crowds--it has five, six tables, tops--but if you want to experience real, raw Ethiopian cuisine, this is your place. Read more.
  21. Just tried this relatively new place for lunch. Actually, I went in there for coffee and found it's the most poorly named restaurant in the world, because it's not just a coffee house; it has a full Ethiopian menu. I got the lamb tibs just because I had them Sunday at Dukem and wanted a fresh comparison to what I think is the best. These stood up well to the urban competition. Smaller pieces of meat and not as spicy (heat wise) as Dukem but with great flavor. Lunch special for 8.50 was a good size serving of the tibs with 2 veggie sides, all neatly wrapped in injera for carryout. I was more than satisfied, and am very happy to have found decent Ethiopian out in the burbs. http://www.coffeeoromia.com/
  22. Habesha Market & Carry Out 1919 9th Street NW If you're looking for cheap and pretty tasty takeout Ethiopian food this is a place to consider. I've ordered from here 4-5 times now and haven't had a bad meal. But, I've never had a meal at the level of Queen Makeda or Etete either. There can be a language issue but they are very friendly and I've never had a problem ordering what I wanted. There can be difficulty finding out what something is though with some of the descriptions being a bit less comprehensive than I'd prefer. But I've never had any nasty surprises. You can get a four item meat combo from the steam table for $7.50 or a four item veggie combo for $7.00. This is usually enough food to easily make two meals. If you go during the dinner or lunch rush the steam table items turn over fairly fast. But, I've never had trouble getting them to refresh something from the back if something looks tired. In particular I really like their spicy tripe and spicy beef from the steam table and the lentils and greens are always good. Their Kitfo is made to order and is a fairly large order for $7.50. The 50/50 is also worth trying. It is a large order of raw cubed beef and cooked beef tibs. There are quite a few tables for eating there but I've always gotten takeout. You can also get large packages of injera and bulk spices to go.
  23. Tim Carman retweeted Adams Moorhen's tweet about Meskerem in Adams Morgan being closed (with a picture of a lease sign). Sad. Meskerem was the first Ethiopian restaurant I went to (back in the early 90's).
  24. Dropped in last night on recommendation of a friend who's about as Ethiopian as you can be if you were born in Wisconsin. I wasn't too keen on the usual round-up of stewed lentils-- bland -- though others liked the yellow peas (Mrs. B will translate) quite a bit. Spicing that might have been in the lentils was apparently reserved for an excellent kitfo, fresh and very spicy, maybe my favorite ever. And I particularly enjoyed a firfir (also spelled "fitfit," on the menu once or twice) made with a tangy spice mixture tosses with injera and dried beef. Well worth a stop.
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