Cafe Colucci 6427 Telegraph Ave., (510) 473-5944. L-D daily; $.
|exterior of Cafe Colucci in Oakland, California|
Colorful, aromatic Ethiopian cuisine, with many vegetarian and vegan options, composes the menu at Cafe Colucci. Items are arranged traditionally on a large round tray and placed in the table’s center, to be shared by all diners. Following tradition, eating utensils are not provided. Diners instead use their hands to envelope food with rolls of spongy injera bread. Whole fried fish (asa tibs), a house specialty, is served with fried potatoes and salad. Chicken in tumeric sauce with boiled egg (doro alicha) is another tasty option. To familiarize yourself with the cuisine, order a combination platter. My favorite is the Vegan Combination Platter, a feast featuring traditional Ethiopian cuisine staples--azifa (lentil salad), buticha (chickpea salad), messer wot (lentil stew), kik alicha (split-pea stew), gomen (collard greens) and atakilt (a mix of sautéed cabbage, carrots, and potatoes), salata (salad), and a large injera. Note that gluten-free teff injera is available by request. Seating is available inside and also outside at picnic tables on a spacious patio with large tropical plants and heat lamps. Ethiopian spices and books are available for sale, along with logo t-shirts.
|open kitchen at Cafe Colucci in Oakland, California|
|Ethiopian spices for sale at Cafe Colucci in Oakland, California|
|vegan platter (take-out) at Cafe Colucci in Oakland, California|