Gray Flannel Dwarf

10/25/2005

Little Ethiopia

CNN/AP has an interesting article entitled “‘Little Ethiopia’ takes root in D.C.” about the burgeoning Ethiopian communities arising in DC:

On a small stage, performers in sequined white gowns thump on drums and sing traditional music from the East African nation. Patrons sitting nearby use their fingers — no forks here — to tear into spongy pancakes and scoop up exotic cuisine such as awaze tibs, which is lamb marinated with jalapeno, tomato and garlic.

A new ethnic identity is taking root in a once-decaying neighborhood not far from the White House, where 10 Ethiopian restaurants are clustered together and dingy storefronts are now splashed with bright hues of blues, yellows and reds.

This made me think about whenever we would, on occasion, take trips out to Adams Morgan, where one can find any number of ethnic restaurants… and there used to be several Ethiopian joints there too. They probably still are.

I liked Adams Morgan a lot, sans the hassle it took to always get there — and to be fair, I tended to bitch a lot about the time and hassle it took to get anywhere near the city. But anyway, it seemed like every time we decided to head to Adams Morgan, it was freezing outside. That one St. Patty’s day, I think I had green beer and blue hands.

R, the Italian in the crew, loved the cheap ass, giant floppy slices of pizza that you could get for like a buck fifty. I liked Tryst, and the tough-looking bar nearby that had the Shinerbock countdown. There was the time M and I went into a dive called, I think, the Pharmacy, where they had a pharmacy sign on the wall with Cyrillic letters. M was told by the bartender — and owner, I think — that it had come over from somewhere in the former Yugoslavia. The guy’s mom had picked it up.

We had a good time once or twice at the wine bar down there, too, near Kalorama road I think. The name escapes me, and I sometimes wonder if it’s still there. You go to restaurants once in a while these days, and the trendy thing is to have crayons and rolls of paper to draw upon. This was the first place I’d seen that, and quite a few months before I’d seen it anywhere else.


cswiii @ 12:11 pm