Editors' pick

Ethiopic

Ethiopian
$$$$ ($15-$24)
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Editorial Review

2012 Fall Dining Guide
By Tom Sietsema
Sunday, October 21, 2012

The benchmark for the area’s dozens of Ethio­pian restaurants is not where you’d expect to find it -- near Ninth and U, Washington’s “Little Ethi­o­pia” -- but in the Atlas District instead. That’s where owners Samuel Ergete and Meseret Bekele call home. And that’s where two years ago, the husband and wife hatched a plan to rachet up their homeland’s hospitality and food. The more I eat at its peers, the more I’m drawn to Ethiopic. Its service is attentive. Brick walls, wood floors and columns painted with the Amharic alphabet create an inviting setting for a feast eaten with fingers. If you’re looking for a complex doro wat (chicken legs), a fiery kitfo (think steak tartare) or what might be the best vegetarian sampler around, here’s your kitchen. And if you think pureed chickpeas lack punch, the vinegar- and jalapeno-stoked “fasting egg” at Ethiopic will blow your top.