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La Vida Vegan: Handfuls of Culture

Expect no silverware, but plenty of flavor at Muzita Bistro.
Odette Cressler

By Odette Cressler

The Dish
Shiro, Tajima, Caulo, and Alitcha Platter

The Spot
Muzita Bistro
4651 Park Boulevard

Sometimes we get too wrapped up in new restaurants. There are so many buzzy spots, I have to keep a list to even remember all of them. But what about the places that are still so good even though they have been open for years? Isn’t that more of a challenge? To be open and stay just as busy, just as delicious?

Eating at Muzita Bistro has always been a memorable experience thanks to a homey atmosphere, the tastiest, most authentic Ethiopian food, and the friendliest service. This time I was there with my Spanish-speaking parents and the server did a great job practicing his Spanish with them.

Muzita is a place that unveils culture through its dishes. Order the shiro (a stew of seasoned ground chickpeas) with the timtimo (spicy red lentils) and caulo (braised green cabbage) as sides. Don’t expect silverware. Instead, tear up the flat bread, or injera, and soak it in these dishes before enjoying it. Don’t feel intimidated. The aromatic flavors of garlic, chile, and ginger are adventurous yet familiar at the same time.

Whenever you can’t decide which new restaurant to visit, remember that older places have staying power for a reason.

TIP: If you like to pair your food with wine, try a glass of mess, a traditional honey wine that pairs well with the spices used in Ethiopian food. Cheers!

Shiro, Timtino, Caulo, and Alitcha Platter

Odette Cressler

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San Diego, CA