Little Ethiopia Recs for a Monday

Thanks @westsidegal. It was thanks to your recommendation and @Bigmouth’s and a few others that I decided to try Awash. The food was tasty for sure.

Yah if we sat ourselves at the bar, right in front of the waitress, I think she’d have no recourse but to take our order promptly (she seemed to stay there most of the time), or we’d be able to get her attention quickly. I hope it was just a fluke, or just isolated to 1 bad waitress.

i go there all the time and have NEVER been treated badly.

that said, from my years going to ibex, i learned that there is a cultural element in what can be described as “good service,” and i learned, be it right or wrong, never to get my pants in a knot when going to any mom 'n pop ethnic restaurant.

rahel’s lunch buffet, being self service, will always be your bet lunch bet for fast service.

I’m so glad you enjoyed Awash and the awaze chicken tibs, @Chowseeker1999!

I’m so sorry about your service experience, though. I’ve definitely encountered slow/flaky service at Awash – sort of par for the course at Ethiopian places – but I’ve never felt discriminated against. What you describe sounds really lame. I’d be angry, too.

BTW, have you tried the veggie combo at Meals by Genet? I personally like it better than Awash or Rahel.

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Hi @Bigmouth,

I can’t stop thinking about the Awaze Chicken Tibbs, so huge thanks to you. :slight_smile:

I haven’t made it to Meals by Genet yet. Are they open for lunch these days?

I will def try their Veggie Combo (noted). :slight_smile: Can’t wait. Thanks

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Meals by Genet isn’t open for lunch, but they will usually do takeaway if you call and ask nicely. Be prepared to wait ~30+ minutes, though.

Merkato Ethiopian

Went for a large group birthday party last Saturday. After considering Awash and inquiring at the newer Lalibela, Merkato seemed most able to handle a large party. It’s a very colorful and festive place. They serve beer, honey wine and charge a corkage fee for B.Y.O.

Yemisir Sambusa - These lentil stuffed pastries w/the rich & spicy red sauce are delicious. The perfect starter or a meal itself.

I’m still looking forward to trying the Chicken Tibs at Awash which seem richer and more savory. But these were tasty, with tender chicken and a zesty tomato sauce.

I wanted the regular Ribeye Tibs, but for some reason the waitress pushed for the Awaze Tibs & Yetibbs Fir-Fir. One is cubes of “selected beef” with onions, tomatoes, peppers and spiced butter. The other is sautéed strips of beef with onions, tomatoes, green chillies and garlic tossed with injera. The one with strips was only slightly less chewy than the other. Definite fails IMO.

The star! Whole Fried Fish. No coating of any kind, just a little salt w/lemon wedges and injera on the side. It’s crispy & savory on the outside, delicate & moist on the inside. :star_struck:

The Veggie Combo had Spicy Tomato Salad, Collards, Cabbage, Yellow Split Peas, Powdered Peas and my favorite Spicy Lentil Stew. Very satisfying.

The Honey Wine was strangely addicting. It tasted like day old white wine w/honey, but in a good way :relaxed:.

They also have a store packed with a plethora of goods and curiosities - With a sweet little coffee bar, seated with regulars drinking coffee, beer and shooting the breeze.

This really is a cool spot. We got a little rowdy. But the staff just took it all in stride.


Hi @Chowseeker1999 -

That’s funny. It’s common in Ethiopian restaurants. They definitely don’t feel the need to fawn all over customers. I find it amusing, as long as it doesn’t cross the line to rudeness. But the thought has crossed my mind before - and your experience is putting weight to it - that Awash may be into “regulars” only. They are off the beaten path.

I work with 2 Ethiopian guys. For years they told me to skip Fairfax and go to this authentic place on Pico. Funny, neither could remember the name. They just know where it is and go. They kept trying to explain the location to me, but I could never find it. Finally I spotted it while driving down Pico. I thought, “This looks so nondescript and uninviting.”

Maybe I’m reading too much into it. @Bigmouth and @westsidegal did not have the same experience… Hmmm.

Definitely still going to go. These pictures of the food look too good. But glad for the tip about the service. So I won’t take it personally :wink:.

Awash is so great. Been going for a while.

Favorite moment was a visit some two weeks ago, when one of the outlets short circuited… the electric line went out for the whole place basically, including kitchen. Place was full so they kept cooking and within a couple of minutes the whole place was filling up with smoke (no ventilation), delicious delicious ethiopian spice flavored smoke… people sitting around kind of giggling, we not caring… . but a table next to us with a couple of younger non-Ethiopians were quite concerned and quietly whiny … when waitress came back with drinks they asked if they can have their food to go… she asked why? they pointed at the outlet and she said calm your tits children, we just called THE MAN… THE man comes from who knows what, he was there within 5 minutes, with tools, and fixes the plug all by himself… those two guys never really relaxed hahahahah

this is from yesterday and is way bigger than it looks