Cheap Eats 2012: Ethiopic

The vegetarian sampler for two at Ethiopic. Photograph by Scott Suchman

Cheap Eats 2012

We’re no strangers to tibs, Ethiopia’s answer to
fajitas, but every time we dive into the sizzling skillet of lega
at this cafe we feel as though we’re eating the dish for the
first time. The quality of the lamb is vastly superior to the
competition’s, and the kitchen delivers tenderness beneath the crusty
exterior. The dish’s excellence represents something new to the scene, but
the slightly upmarket approach doesn’t constitute a dumbing-down of the
cuisine—the meat and veggie stews, or wats, might not overwhelm
with heat and spice, but they’re plenty complex, teasing with hints of
ginger, cardamom, koseret, and korerima.

Also good: Doro wat, stewed chicken
leg; kitfo, beef tartare with butter sauce and crumbled cheese;
vegetarian sampler; butcha, a chickpea salad; azifa, a
green-lentil salad.

Ann Limpert
Executive Food Editor/Critic

Ann Limpert joined Washingtonian in late 2003. She was previously an editorial assistant at Entertainment Weekly and a cook in New York restaurant kitchens, and she is a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education. She lives in Petworth.