Arada is needlessly overpriced. Plus, the injera is just lousy. The bestEthiopian place in town is, hands-down-no-question, Habesha at 7033East Colfax.
Best African Restaurant - 2007
Arada Ethiopian Cafe
Last year, Arada moved out of its home on East Colfax and into a small, comfortable space on Santa Fe surrounded by taquer?as and art galleries, in just the right area for catching hungry adventurers looking for an interesting dinner on a Saturday night. It's a nice place with scratchy tablecloths and no silverware, strong, sweet black coffee served in tiny demitasse cups, a full bar and a modern kitchen, and decor dominated by a large map of Ethiopia. But the important thing here is the menu, an uncompromising document that presents Ethiopian cuisine in a style almost completely unchanged from how it's served in the mother country. The slew of sides that attend many of the dishes are reminiscent of the more common cuisines they've inspired (Cajun and Caribbean and American soul food); the spicy meat dishes -- best served raw -- have both the feel of something comfortingly familiar and the taste of a food that's still completely alien to many people.