Alrighty, 'hounds, what in your opinion is the best ethiopian in the following borders: the don valley, jane, bloor and the lake?
After perusing it seems like people think Lalibella is the good stuff. What about Addis Ababa on Queen?
I tried Lalibella a couple of months ago, and it was very tasty. I only sampled the vegetarian offerings, but I found them to be very well-spiced. The meat-eaters I was with also enjoyed their dishes. The atmosphere was fun, too.
I like Paradise on the Danforth near Donlands. It was just delicious and the spicing was bright. I mean you could taste the different spices, they seemed fresh.
Addis Ababa _____'s and they are rude too. They actually scammed me on the pricing too. Plus they burn the most disgusting incense imaginable that fills the whole place.
Queen of Sheba is my favorite Ethiopian place. It is on Bloor a couple blocks east of dufferin. They give you unreal good large plates of stuff with side plates of ingera. Get the mixed queen of sheba platter that has a mix of vege and meat dishes all on one plate plus side plate of ingera and salad, all for like $8 or 9 or something. You won't finish everything, it is good value for the cash. It is nothing special in terms of atmosphere though, just go for the food.
I'll second Queen of Sheba. Ridiculously cheap, ridiculously filling, not overwhelmed by incense. Just make sure you tell friends what is in kifto, unless you somehow have room to finish theirs :) May lack atmosphere, but it is roomier than other places I've been (large circular tables, which make more sense if a group is sharing platters).
As for other places mentioned in this thread, I also like Ethiopian House (especially their lean, flavourful tibs, which wouldn't serve as a bad introductory dish, since they're more like a twist on fajita-style meat), though it can be painfully slow and the a la carte chicken stew is overpriced. Wasn't terribly impressed by Addis Adaba - service was non-existant, seemed pricier than other places without being noticeably better. Haven't tried Lalibela yet.
I've only been to Lalibela (sp?) and Ethiopian House...
I thought all in all, Lalibela was really good, but I prefered their vegetarian dishes to their meat dishes. I found the meat to be chewy.
I liked Ethiopian House, but found there was less variety with the vegetarian dishes, but the meat was tender, and their injera was less sour than Lalibela. I'm not sure if thats a good thing or not...
I have tried Ethiopian House, Queen of Sheba and Addis Ababa. Ethiopian House is small and you can feel a little cramped, but the food is good and has a much better atmosphere/decor. Addis Ababa is a little bigger, but I didn't like the dim lighting, I could barely see what I was eating. Queen of Sheba is bigger in size, but the food seemed to soak through the Injera more than others. Out of these three, I would recommend Ethiopian House. Just wondering, where is Lalibella??
Bloor just west of Shaw. We used to go there often until the quality seemed to go down, haven't been back in six years or so. They used to serve some really delicious potato thingy as an hors d'oevre... do they still do this? Based on the recs below, we'll give them another try.
I third Ethiopian House. Slow on occasion, yes, but consistently good, IMO. Comparing Q of S and Addis Ababba, I'd say the rude folks are at the Queen... service has been universally rude to non-existant for us, and we live close and have gone often. We still go only because of the proximity. Food is OK, but not worth writing home about. Addis Ababba has given me some really nice meals lately (yep, it's stinky of incense if that's not your thing) but is probably the most expensive of the bunch. Being close to the Drake Hotel, you're paying a 'hip premium' now, I suspect.
Feeling adventurous? Start at Lalibela at Bloor & Shaw, and walk west a couple of blocks. Both the north and south sides of the street have a number of Ethiopian places that I haven't yet tried... bit of a village, it would seem.