Ras Dashen definitely steps up to the plate in combating the Midwestern blandness I have been encountering at other restaurants. It was exactly what we needed after yoga class tonight and we had been itching to go back since the last time we were there about 16 months ago. Self described on their menu as "Comfort food from the mountains of Ethiopia" you can order from a variety of vegan dishes that will come served on a huge piece of injera bread. Injera is like a sourdough crepe that is really stretchy and has this incredible spongy texture. You use pieces of the bread to pick up the food. For different reasons throughout the meal Amos and I would exclaim:
"We should definitely take Diana here!"
(Because she loves good food and already eats with her hands half the time.)
"We should definitely take (Amos') Dad here!"
(Because he would talk about it for years.)
"If Victoria comes to town we should definitely take her here!"
(Because she loves spicy and good food too.)
We had the chickpeas in berbere sauce with four sides, the most memorable being pickled beet salad, mild yellow split peas and the greens. We didn't try their coffee (roasted fresh daily) but did get the chai (also good). The night-time ride down Lakeshore drive to get to the restaurant didn't hurt either.
If you are in Chicago and you want to eat here check out their website for location and times. There is plenty of street parking. Also they have music on Friday and Saturday nights. If you don't live in Chicago maybe there is an Ethiopian restaurant near you - look at Ethiopian Restaurant Worldwide and find one and eat there!