Little Ethiopia Recs for a Monday

Genet is closed Monday’s
Don’t know any others
One friend suggested Awash in Pico.

awash is a good choice
if you can stand vegan ethiopian,
the lunch buffet at rahel’s is a good choice

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Buna Ethiopian Market. Ambience isn’t even close to Genet levels, but the food is delicious and the portions are gargantuan.


My palette isn’t well-developed enough to detect subtle flavor differences in Ethiopian restaurants (possibly b/c I still have difficult identifying the dishes!), but I’ve always enjoyed Rahel’s (some unexpected crunch) and Rosalind’s (across the street).

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right next to my current indian obsession

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Thanks so much @paranoidgarliclover @westsidegal @iloveto8va
These are very helpful suggestions.

it should be noted that rahel’s offers TEFF INJERA (i.e. NO WHEAT) for a slight upcharge.
imho, that alone, elevates the place.
also, the general quality of the food offered at the ayce lunch buffet is far higher than one has any right to expect at any ayce place at that price.

Hi @CiaoBob,

Sorry I didn’t see your post until it was too late, but I’d second @westsidegal @paranoidgarliclover’s rec. I enjoy Rahel’s Ethiopian as well. For being a vegan place it has a lot of great flavors and was great for us.

+1 on Buna.

Beautiful shots from Yelp of the fish at Buna


Awash for sure. I like it much better than Buna or Rahel, personally. Just make sure you call ahead to confirm they’re open.

EDIT: D’oh. Too late lol.

My group’s interest in dinner last night fizzed. Will keep these in mind.

y’know, i’m curious.

i haven’t had any ethiopian here in los angeles (hard ‘g’ a la mitchum),
but had it quite often way back in the day in D.C.

generally, how does the local stuff compare to the joints in d.c., if anyone
out there has tried both.
just looking for a general impression, a la, “the mexican in l.a. is superior to that
in borculo, michigan.”

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I would say generally there’s no comparison to DC. However, certain specific places like Meals by Genet (more refined) and Awash (more rustic) do food that’s comparable imo.

Hi @Bigmouth,

What are your recs for dishes to order at Awash? I must visit soon. Thanks!

I’m a Michigan boy and I had never heard of Borculo - although I’ve been to Holland which is in the same neck of the woods. How did you come up with that? I’m impressed.

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the trick is told when the trick is sold, mon freres.

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The vegetarian combo platter is awesome at Awash, especially if you like horseradish. But the dish that gave me a “Ratatouille moment,” so to speak, was the Awaze Chicken Tibs (not to be confused with regular Chicken Tibs). Chunks of thigh meat in a spicy berber sauce with a simple salad of crisp romaine on the side. I’ve gone back several times just for that. Again, however, call ahead, especially if you’re going a lunch time.


Awash Ethiopian Cuisine

Finally made it to Awash. It’s been bookmarked for a while, but whenever I feel like Ethiopian I find myself trying various restaurants in the heart of Little Ethiopia instead, LOL. :slight_smile:

At first we thought it was closed: The storefront keeps their metal grating up, and their front door has an outer metal door as well, and with all the curtains drawn, I thought they were closed. But luckily I tried to open the outer door and it was unlocked.

We walked in, and the waitress behind the bar was chatting it up with 2 customers seated there. She gestured with a wave of the hand to any of the open tables around the restaurant and then continued to talk to them (not in English).

We sat ourselves and waited. The waitress seemed to be having some kind of great conversation because she kept talking and laughing and talking to the 2 customers for a good 15 minutes(!). She never came around to give us the menu or take our drinks during that time.

I finally got up and walked up to the bar counter to get a menu. Then after we decided what to order, she still didn’t come around. I walked up to the bar again to place our order. We figured maybe she’s just a lazy waitress, oh well.

Then to make matters worse, 4 different Ethiopian groups arrived after we did. For each one of them, she promptly stopped chatting and dropped off menus and took their orders. Uhm…

We had placed our order a good 10+ minutes before the first new Ethiopian couple arrived. After they arrived, she greeted them in one of the Ethiopian languages (not in English) and took their order.

Strangely, they got their food within 10 - 15 minutes, while we were still waiting for our food (so it’d been almost 25 minutes or so). I casually got up and passed by their table and noticed what turned out to be eventually the same Vegetarian Combo that we ordered.

We ended up getting our food about 40 minutes after we ordered it.

What looked like the owner(?) showed up from the entrance behind the kitchen (you can see through the kitchen from the dining room), whispered something to the cook and patted him on the back, and then sat down at the bar. Within minutes the cook was cooking up something and plating it and giving it to the fellow at the bar (while we sat around and waited).

The other 2 Ethiopian groups ended up getting drink orders delivered promptly (we didn’t get our drinks) within minutes as well. I don’t casually use the “R” word, but we were seriously wondering if there was some racism going on here? We were nice and smiled at the waitress when we entered, and we got the worst service I’ve seen in a long time.

Vegetarian Combo:

With 7 different vegetarian items, this was plentiful and generally tasty.

Stewed Spinach:

Their Stewed Spinach was only lightly spiced, and had a mild flavor profile. It tasted fine.


Their only raw vegetable item was a lettuce salad that was surprisingly spicy. I bit into a Jalapeno, which explains the heat. It was rather tart, but fine as well.

Spiced Lentils:

Their Spiced Lentils were the saltiest item in the Vegetable Combo. It wasn’t overbearing, but it was a bit heavy handed. Otherwise it was a nice bit of heat, salt and fragrance.

Stewed Carrots & Potatoes:

This was a pleasing delicate stew of Carrots and Potatoes. It was comforting and rather tasty.

White Lentil Stew:

What the waitress called White Lentil Stew turned out to be pretty tasty. There was some Horseradish burn (in a good way), helping to clear your sinuses a bit. :wink: This was tied for my favorite item on the Veggie Combo.

Yellow Split Peas:

Their Yellow Split Peas are similar to other dishes around Little Ethiopia. These were the most balanced, spice-wise and flavor-wise for my tastes. Delicious. :slight_smile:

“Another Split Pea Stew”:

The waitress didn’t have an English name for this other than saying this was “Another Split Pea Stew,” a different way of cooking the Peas. It was much more soupy, barely a gravy in density. But it was still pretty delicious, a bit heavier and spicier than the Yellow Split Peas.

Awaze Chicken TIbbs (Chicken cooked in spice and Awaze, Special Red Pepper Sauce):

Huge thanks to @Bigmouth for the recommendation. This was absolutely delicious! :slight_smile: Despite the inferno red color, it was thankfully only lightly spicy (heat-wise), but the Red Pepper Sauce was unmistakably, mouth-wateringly tasty! :slight_smile: We couldn’t stop eating this.

Their Injera Bread seemed fine, pillowy, soft, with some heft. It was slightly tart and fine.

I hope our experience was a fluke accident, with the horrendous service, but if it’s the same way the next time we visit, we won’t be going back. Otherwise, it’s a great alternative to Rahel’s, but I think I like Rahel’s more (obviously the Awaze Chicken Tibbs is something you can’t find there, though and worth coming back for).

Awash Ethiopian Cuisine
5990 W Pico Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90035
Tel: (323) 939-3233


i shuttle between awash and rahel’s.
love them both
have never had the service problem you describe.
maybe it’s because i always sit at the bar??