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Meaza Zemedu, the restaurateur behind the well-regarded Meaza.

My next Young & Hungry column focuses on a new, formal Ethiopian service, which attempts to give diners a sense of the religious tenets that underline an Ethiopian Orthodox home meal. It’s a unique experience, and it has definitely put me in the mood for more injera-based food.

So I read with interest Restaurant Rater sweetpeachums‘ review of Meaza Ethiopian Cuisine and Cafe, one of Y&H’s personal faves. The commentary here speaks well of Meaza’s ability to appeal to newbies.

Sweetpeachum’s review is after the jump.

I’ve only had Ethiopian once before and it was 5+ years ago…so in other words, I don’t know much. The restaurant is in the old Foot Locker on Columbia Pike, near Dick’s Sporting Goods. I had the beef stew and it was delicious. Wonderfully spiced. Marinated in red wine. The bread was better than I remembered. The lamb dish was good too…full of flavor and fresh jalapenos. The one beef dish (one of the first on the menu) was a little rare for me. But then again, based on the menu options, I guess rare (or raw) is pretty standard in the cuisine. It was ordered medium, but it was pretty much rare/raw. It was a very enjoyable evening. It was about $45 for three entrees. Reasonable if you ask me. And the owner (so I was told) came by twice to check on us, which I thought was a very nice touch. The place is huge and it always seems packed at night. I went around 7pm on a weekday so no nightlife to be seen, but I could imagine this place could get hoppin’ on the weekends.

Photo by Darrow Montgomery