Sunday, March 1, 2009

Abol Bunna - The New "Ethiopian" Restaurant in Town (02/19/2009)

I meant to post this blog a week ago - was under the weather and am finally all caught up with things!
On Thursday night 2/19/09, Erica's "In the Kitchen" group went to Abol Bunna, a new Ethiopian restaurant that opened up near the Westshore district of Tampa. I had read a review of the restaurant in The St. Petersburg Times, and it sounded like the type of restaurant that Cary and I love to try out - funky, reasonably priced, and ethic foods that we have never experienced before.
We got to the place, and I fell in love with the decor - yellow walls with brown trim, "industrial" (open) ceilings, and a seating area off to the side where you could experience eating like an Ethiopian:

While we were trying to figure out what to order, the owner of the restaurant, Azeb Bezabeh, came over and explained the nuances of Ethiopian food. We were then treated to a surprise - my husband had actually worked with Azeb years ago when the two of them did catering events over at the Marriott Tampa Airport!

A couple of us decided to be adventurous with appetizers, so we ordered the following:

Abol Tuna Seleta and Lentil Sambusa

I really liked the spice jars that were on the table, so I decided to photo them as well.

I am not sure which appetizer I liked better - the Abol Tuna Seleta had a really interesting texture to it, and the Lentil Sambusa was like eating Lentils inside Phyllo pillows!

For dinner, there were a variety of items ordered. A couple of entrees were repeated, which I really thought was cool. As for me - I could not decide between three of the entrees, so I did what I usually do - I ordered the Combination platter so that I could taste everything and see what I liked (all of it!) and did not like. Cary ordered the Awaze Tibs, and I really thought that it was outstanding as well.

Vege Variety Combo Platter, Alichia Dooro Wet, Duba Wet, Awaze Tibs,
Gored Gored, Abol Combination, Special Kitfo - Raw

A few of us were in the mood for something hot, so an Ethiopian Coffee Service was ordered:

As for me, since I was under the weather, I ordered tea. I expected to be served a Lipton's tea bag - I was not expecting to be served a variety of spices that were ground together then seeped through a piece of cheesecloth and then added to the Lipton's tea bag. I decided to forgo the tea bag and just enjoy the spiced infusion, which is now my favorite way to unwind after a long day!

All in all, this was one of the most enjoyable evenings out that we have experienced in a long time, and will definitely be recommending this restaurant to anyone who wants to experience Ethiopian food in a wonderful and unique setting!

Enjoy and Bon appetit!
Chef Susan aka Chef Jersey Girl

1 comment:

  1. YUM! I ADORE Ethiopian food! I especially love Kitfo and Gored Gored. Thanks for posting


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