Walia Ethiopian Restaurant is a relatively recent addition to Edmonton’s Ethiopian assemblage, and holds its own in Edmonton’s powerhouse dining neighborhood, 124 Street.
(The Glob and Mail)―Edmonton is fortunate to house a scant handful of excellent Ethiopian restaurants, including the venerable Langano Skies, which has been around for more than a decade. Lesser-known eateries, however, are worth seeking out. They boast a raw authenticity that has not yet been whitewashed and distorted, as is the case for so many ethnic cuisines that have been refracted through the fast-food lens.
Walia Ethiopian Restaurant is a relatively recent addition to Edmonton’s Ethiopian assemblage, and holds its own in Edmonton’s powerhouse dining neighborhood, 124 Street. Sandwiched between a jeweler and an apartment block, Walia Ethiopian Restaurant is easy to miss. The small dining room is decked out with wicker chairs and twinkly lights. Bolts of gauzy fabric snake back and forth across the ceiling; it’s a valiant effort to spruce up an otherwise pedestrian space. The restaurant’s initial lack of stage presence, however, is quickly overshadowed by the myriad of enticing scents wafting out of the kitchen.
Indeed, the exotic fragrances of chilies, cardamom, fenugreek and cloves portend the arrival of flavorful fare. A pot of spiced tea ($3) sings with cinnamon, whole cloves and cardamom. One may stir in a black tea bag for additional oomph, but it is rather quenching all on its own.
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