"" Life A Bit Sweeter: Taste of Ethiopia: Bete Restaurant in Silver Spring, MD

Monday, April 19, 2010

Taste of Ethiopia: Bete Restaurant in Silver Spring, MD

For our anniversary this year, I really wanted to introduce Tony to Ethiopian fare.  I tried Ethiopia food at the baby shower I attended and also a little at a restaurant near the University of Maryland.  Tony was game so I was excited.  As I shared before, I am not an adventurous eater.  This girl grew up on southern fare like chicken and dumplings, macaroni and cheese, candy yams, collard greens, rice and gravy, corn bread, and sweet tea!  Have mercy!!!  (okay I'm back now...lol)  Because our family often played it safe in our comforts of southern cooking, my taste buds are doing cartwheels as I take them out to the deep end of international cuisine.

The place of choice for our date was Bete Cafe.  It was a quick hop off the Capital Beltway in downtown Silver Spring.  When we arrived, we realized that its name described it perfectly.  As the manager, Teru (also pronounced True) shared, Bete means 'my house' in Amharic.  This quaint beauty is just that....a red brick house that when you walk in you feel as if you are walking into a good friend's house.  We were warmly greeted by our server and snagged the table by the window.  Tony started a little safe and ordered a ginger ale.  I decided to get things started for me with a macchiato and a sambusa.  Great choice for a starter!  You've got to try it.  I've had sambusas before but the ones at Bete have the right blend of spices and have just enough kick to make you keep taking another bite.  (Of course after sipping on my macchiato, I did as I often do....sipped on Tony's beverage a little too.)

We decided to experiment with a bounty of food.  Tony wanted the beef tibs or more properly named on the menu as Yeshint Tibs.  This was my absolute favorite and is described on the menu as:

I ordered the Doro Wot:

The Doro Wot wasn't my favorite thing but I have friends who love it.  Just not my personal preference.
To enjoy our Ethiopian harvest more, we also ordered the vegetable combo which was served on a large platter flanked with plenty of injera.  The combo included gomen (collard greens), Tekil Gomen (cabbage and carrot), Yekik Alicha (split peas), Yemisir Kik Wat (red lentils), and much more.

So if that wasn't enough, as we were getting ready to pay the bill Teru tempted us in a MAJOR way with the most delicious cakes to celebrate our anniversary.  Yes, I said cakes...plural!  She gave us two slices of cake.  I don't know what kind of cakes they were other than one tasted similar to tiramisu which is one of my FAVORITE desserts and the other had puff pastry and custard....OH MY GOODNESS!!!!  If you're in the area, even if you're not really hungry on that day, you have to stop in to Bete for a macchiato and dessert.  But really, their entire dessert case is AMAZING!

Bete is fairly new and has a great patio area for dining.  They also host private parties and will cater an event for you.  The owners are finishing up the upstairs to allow for more seating in this portion of the house.  Teru was gracious enough to give us a tour of the patio and the upstairs.  When I say we'll be back...trust me...we will!  This was one of my favorite date nights with my honey.

Bete Ethiopian Cuisine is located at 811 Roeder Road in Silver Spring, MD 20910.  You can also call them at (301) 588-222....sorry web friends...no website yet!

Anyways...what about you?  What types of other international cuisine have you tried?  What did you think?


Delilah said...

So glad you had a wonderful anniversary dinner,and were able to try some new Ethiopian foods! By far, my favorite international food is Northern Indian....LOVE IT!!!! ~Delilah

Crazy Roots in Africa said...

We celebrated one of the AWAA staff's birthday while in Ethiopia picking up our children and we ate a cake, flaky and custardy, like you describe, and it was by far one of the best cakes I've ever eaten. Don't know why, but I was surprised by how good it was. Happy Anniversary! Ours was last week too, but we opted for a steak dinner and a movie. Yummy.

Angela said...

We've tried Ethiopian food too Michelle. We like lamb dishes. I'm not a big fan of injera though. I'm trying.

Angela said...

Funny, I had Thai for dinner today :)

Michelle said...

@Delilah: I like Indian also although I tend to play it safe. I'm not sure about the differences between the different regions but my favorite dish is butter chicken and the puff bread...forgot what it's called but it's sooo good!

@Gina: oooh...wasn't it good?!?! Happy Anniversary!

@Towards the Horizon: I've tried lamb I think once. I like it. I'm really trying to warm up to some new stuff. The injera did take some getting used to but I actually liked it better at this restaurant versus another time I had it.

Michelle said...

@Towards the Horizon: ...and I really like Thai spring rolls! yummy!

Meliski said...

Did you see our recent post about visiting an Ethiopian restaurant in Seattle? We had been there before, but hadn't blogged about it. Your place sounds lots fancier than ours, but the couple who runs it sound just as wonderful and takes great pride in their wonderful food!

Wait a sec...I just looked back at your post before I sent of this comment, and realized we pretty much ordered the exact same thing! HA! And ours fed FOUR adults. Not that I'm judging..... :)

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