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Eating Out: The Abyssinian


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It was time for my friends and I to try another international cuisine. This time around we made the bold decision to channel our inner African and treat our taste buds to Ethiopian food.

When I think of Ethiopian food, I imagine getting a package from World Vision with a bunch of seedlings for me to plant to grow my own crops!... Luckily this was no the case when we were presented with a very thorough menu at Abyssinian.

The size of the restaurant was fairly cosy, with some people seated at normal tables and others, like us were seated at more traditional settings, a small round communial table with small chairs and smaller tables around for our drinks. This posed a bit of a problem later down the track though.
Meals are served on big, round platters covered with large straw lids.

We had no idea what to order, lots of different options for both vegetarians and meat eaters, even seafood was available. The menu was packed with lots of weird and wonderful ingredients I had never heard of before. We decided to get the chef's variation platter which gave us a sample of everything on Injera bread. A better photo of what it all looked like can be found here.

The Injera bread was nothing like an Indian naan, it was more of a spongy bread that had an almost sour tang to it. It is served cold and is used to scoop up the food. Cultrey is only supplied on request, so my advice is, go with a bunch of people you know and love and hog in with your hands for the authentic experience just like we did.

This was the combination platter of meat, seafood and vegetables for 2. Generous portions, we couldn't finish it all as it was very filling. Everything is slow cooked, and to perfection. The spices and special sauces made each "dish" different from the next. Even the salad dressing was amazing!
However, as you can see, this meat platter for 2 took up the whole table and we had 1 vegetarian with us who ordered the vegetarian platter, so we had to use one of the side tables for the other platter.

This was the vegetarian platter. This picture shows the shear size of 1 Injera bread.

We even tried the Ethiopian tea, which was supplied with sugar. I ended up having to put in 2 sugars, however it went great with the food, but nothing like a green tea or Chinese tea that I would want to drink without food.

There is only 1 dessert on the menu, "cream caramel", which we didn't try as we went on the hunt for cocktails, we have a cocktail blog, please check it out and tell your friends:

Service was a little slow when we first arrived, understandable as they were very busy, however the food came out very fast. I think this is because everything is slow cooked so they just need to scoop it on the Injera bread.
Reasonably priced, great food, it's no wonder the Cheap Eats guide has classed it "best in it's class".
If you are up for something new to treat your taste buds, head over to The Abyssinian. Bookings are essential!!

The Abyssinian
277 Racecourse Road
Kensington, VIC 3031
Phone: (03) 9376 8754 or SMS: 0423 695 341
Web: www.riftvalley.com.au/index.html

Abyssinian on Urbanspoon


I lurve injera! I haven't eaten many in Melbourne though...

I have a vague memory of trying Ethiopian food many, many years ago but nothing recently. I don't even think we have an Ethiopian restaurant in Sydney! It looks great and the vegetarian plate looks huge :)

Cindy - I'm still yet to fall in love with Injera! x

Lorraine - It was huge! It was all so huge! Nice experience though x

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