hi- my friend wants to go to an ethiopian restaurant in chicago for her birthday on friday. does anyone know of any good places? i've heard of ethiopian diamond and ras dashen, but i've never been to either. we've all eaten ethiopian food before, just not in chicago. most of us are vegetarian so if you have any dish recommendations for the restaurants, let me know. thanks in advance.
I went to undergrad at Loyola University, which is right by Ethiopian Diamond and Ras Dashen. I prefer Ethiopian Diamond - it's my favorite in town - and in fact, my second choice would be Demera, right by the Lawrence el stop. Ras Dashen is definitely tasty, though, and has its partisans as well.
Since you're vegetarians, I recall that Ras Dashen has more veggie dishes(although Ethiopian Diamond has 8 or 10 veggie options, as well as combos, so it's not like you'd be hurting in that area, and as I said, I prefer the flavors there).
My favorites are yemisir watt (spicy lentils), shiro (spiced, but not spicy, chickpea powder puree), tikil gomen (slow-cooked cabbage and carrots), and quosta (spinach - tastes incredibly creamy, but is vegan). I have found shimbra assa (mock fish made with a falafel-like chickpea batter) to be tasty, but a little greasy. If you're all sharing (which you should!) you can taste pretty much all the veggie dishes they offer. Enjoy!