You know an ethnic restaurant is good when its tables are filled with natives. When it comes to Ethiopian food, Awash in New York’s Upper West Side is something of a gold standard. This small and busy eatery near Columbia University offers affordable, large portions of classic dishes like kitfo (raw beef in a chili-based spice blend and seasoned, clarified butter) and doro wat (tender chicken gently simmered in berbere sauce.) Awash is also a great place to take your vegetarian friends, with at least seven dishes to choose from such as the spiced chickpea dish Shiro. Make sure you get a doggie bag.
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Congratulations to Mei Lin, winner of Top Chef Season 12.