Although South African food was high on my priority list, it seemed a bit silly not to seek out the food from other African countries. Interestingly there are only a handful of pan-African restaurants (like Mama Africa, Gold, Marco's) and even fewer specialty ones I could find. Ethiopian is something we've always enjoyed and so we ventured for that.
There's Lucy and Addis both nearby, and I chose Lucy because it was a little closer (and the Google rating marginally higher 4.7 vs. 4.4). For a while we were the only 2 diners on a Monday night. It's a nicely decorated setting full of African tapestries, decorations and faces adorning the walls.
The service was all smiles and banter - excellent hospitality worthy of the 15% tip I gave. The food is good too. I learnt about mitmita, the hotter sister of berbere although the waiter said none of the dishes had it in them. I think by the end what he meant was they save the mitmita for the Ethiopians, under the assumption noone else will enjoy or can handle the heat. That sounds like a challenge for next time, as the berbere was spicy but only mildly so.
- Buticha R40 - I've never tried crispy injera, but here is was deepfried to a crisp porous chip with the distinctive tangy taste and sprinkled with berbere. It was served with two delicious dips of blended chickpeas (although I wonder if it was yellow lentils) and homemade cottage cheese with sauteed spinach. Excellent and unique dish;
- Combo (select 2 half portions of dishes for the injera) R155 x2 - white injera lined the plate and was served with doro wot drumstick (excellent dark scarlet earthy spicy chilli sauce with an egg and a drumstick), yebeg alicha (very meaty-tasting lamb with garlic, ginger and clarified butter), misir wot (red split lentils in berbere with a less intense sauce than the doro wot) and mushroom (cleanly cooked with garlic and delicious). My favourite was clearly the doro wot, but the others were nice and complemented well.
I really wanted to try the special kitfo of beef tartar, but that choice was vetoed. Next time, with doro wat then. Maybe with some mitmita on top.