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San Francisco Bay Area Ethiopian

Finfine - Arrrrr! Pirates Rank It Second Best Ethiopian of the East Bay (long)

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Finfine - Arrrrr! Pirates Rank It Second Best Ethiopian of the East Bay (long)

Kathleen Mikulis | Sep 19, 2003 03:45 PM

In honor of Talk Like a Pirate Day (celebrated today, Sept. 19th - the link is below) I almost tried to write my review in that spirit. Luckily for you I abandoned this idea. Mostly.

*****

I went to another Ethiopian restaurant last night in me quest to go to every Ethiopian restaurant in the East Bay. Finfine was its name, and it's located in "The Village" next to that land lubber, Fondue Fred.

2556 Telegraph Ave. (at Blake), Berkeley
510-883-0167

Ahoy! On to the grub!
We ordered ye doro tibs (chicken with tomatoes and onions) and ye assa lebleb (grilled sea bass with onions). Arrrr! Both entrees suffered from too much pepper. It could have been because we're not Ethiopian, since we overheard arrrrr server at another table saying he could use pepper instead if they didn't like spicy food. (Incidentally, we weren’t told this.) I recommend asking for less pepper and more of the real spices for anyone visiting. The spicing bothered the wench (a.k.a. the boyfriend) more than I.

The doro tibs ($8.95) were white meat and good overall, though not as kickass as Abyssinia's. The ye assa lebleb ($10.95) was listed as a family specialty, and marked the first time I can remember seafood on an Ethiopian menu. Shiver me timbers! It was quite good, and was so "unfishy" tasting I wondered if someone blindly trying the entree would know it was even fish!

The entrees came with the ubiquitous salad, as well as a potato/carrot side dish that was the best I've had at an Ethiopian restaurant. The ye missir wot (red lentils) were good, but without the spicy kick of Abyssinia's. The bread was thin and a little below average.

We noticed several interesting sounding dishes posted on the menu outside that weren't on the menu we were given. For some added dining options you may want to review the outside menu before ordering. Also the East Bay Express currently has a coupon inside for a free glass/bottle (I forget which) of honey wine here (we didn't get it).

Ayyyyy, matey all of the dishes were good - our only complaint was – Avast! - the omnipresent pepper.

Current ranking:
1) Abyssinia
2) Finfine
3) Cafe Colucci
4) Ethiopia
5) Red Sea/Addis (tie)

Need to re-pillage: Asmara, Blue Nile

Link: http://www.talklikeapirate.com/pirate...

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