Restaurants & Bars 12

Queen Makeda

Minger | Feb 27, 2008 09:04 PM

I went there tonight based on a recommendation from this board and was happy with the experience.

I enjoy the nightlife along that strip and have largely avoided the smear of restaurants there. Of course, that's due to my ignorance or inertia, and I'm glad the board has helped me distinguish between those eateries. My last Ethiopian experience was at Etete during the summer, which was good. We walked by a packed Etete to find Queen Makeda diagonally across the street in much bigger yet nearly deserted space. The restaurant is much nicer inside than their exterior web photo suggests.

We ordered the cubed beef and the vegetarian entrees. The vegetarian came with lentils and our choice of carrots and string beans and collard greens. It also came with white cabbage -- standard part of the vegetarian? Having had the collard greens at Levis Port Cafe this past weekend, I appreciated the thoughtfulness of this preparation of the same: nice and dark green, not overcooked, not watery and nicely bitter and slightly sour, all the right notes. The carrots seemed to be a mash of carrots and string beans. I didn't recognize the beans at all, but that's what it claimed to be on the menu and the color was the shade you'd expect from a mash of the two vegetables. It had a nice curry flavor. The cabbage was a good filler item. Something whitish and tasting like mayonnaise was also spooned out. I loved it.

The beef looked it was smoldering with dark red spiciness. If it were Chinese or Korean cuisine, I would run away scared. Instead of being hot spicy, it was rich complex flavor, not very hot spicy at all.

Each dinner entree was $8.99. WOW. Queen Makeda is a good example of a gustatory arbitrage opportunity. Why beg for a seat at Etete, at higher prices, when Queen Makeda is across the street???

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