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Tim Carman Picks His Top Ethiopian Restaurants

What the critics are saying this week

Metier [Photo: Official]
Metier [Photo: Official]

DC Modern Luxury’s Nevin Martell embarks on a "culinary journey" at Kinship’s sister spot Métier. He thinks the Shaw restaurant is fit for royalty, and he details his seven-course tasting experience that "dazzles at every turn."

Guests get to the subterranean supper club by going down a silent elevator, as if "one is accessing a secret lair." Upon entrance to the 30-seat dining area:

Flickering candles, along with slender rectangular fixtures that seem to float, light the sharp-lined modernist space designed by Darryl Carter. There’s a large window with a view into the white-tiled kitchen where Ziebold and his team work. On the opposing wall hangs a portrait of some nameless elder statesman with a jaunty brushstroke of white paint across his eyes, which the chef hung up as if to say, "We’re not taking ourselves too seriously."

Playfulness is a theme on its menu, too (the first course arrives under a glass cloche and includes "wisps of finely shaved katsuobushi"). And butter-braised potatoes, apparently an homage to Eric Ziebold’s Iowan roots, "tastes like the most decadent stuffed baked potato you’ve ever eaten."

Another big highlight: "perfectly" poached halibut on intensely creamy coconut rice with citrusy, curried swarnadwipa mousse and "a hidden tongue" of uni at the bottom, with melted uni butter poured on top. "Profoundly rich and savory with vinegary pops of acid and brininess, it’s the kind of dish that delights so deeply that conversation will be reduced to low moans of animalistic appreciation." A "charming finale" comes in the form of deconstructed s’mores. [Modern Luxury]

Tom Sietsema’s Fall Dining Guide for 2016 was posted on Thursday, and it includes major praise for pizza restaurant All-Purpose, 52 total reviews, a top ten list of new restaurants, and six four-star restaurants. [The Washington Post]

The much-anticipated Michelin Guide for D.C. was released Thursday, elevating a range of restaurants to the coveted Michelin star-level status (and creating instant lengthy wait lists). Minibar, Inn at Little Washington, and Pineapple & Pearls got two stars and nine got one (no local restaurants got its highest honors of three stars). [Michelin]

WaPo’s Tim Carman has a list of his own this week: the top 10 best Ethiopian restaurants in the D.C. area. No. 1 is Zenebech Restaurant, which is moving, and he thinks Queen of Sheba (No. 3) is "turning out some of the finest Ethio­pian fare anywhere," based on two recent meals.

For the past month he’s packed on Ethio­pian cuisine to "better understand the decentralized and ever-evolving scene." Many picks are old-school Ethio­pian staples in the city, but he also ranks the "wine-focused, full-service" Ethiopic on H Street NE and the fast-casual Ethio Express Grill in Silver Spring as runner-up.

Other notes: CherCher Ethio­pian Restaurant and Mart has "excellent raw-meat preparations"; Meaza Ethio­pian Cuisine "continues to set the standard by which all others are measured"; and Ghion Restaurant and Lounge’s lamb tibs, spiked with jalapeno and cardamom, "make you sit up and pay attention." [WaPo]

FROM THE BLOGS: Been There, Eaten That’s Lori Gardner noshes on Indian cuisine at Indique in Cleveland Park.

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