Buna Ethiopian Market | 99 Essential Restaurants 2015

Buna Ethiopian Market

photo by Danny Liao

It’s easy to miss Buna Ethiopian Market amidst the handful of restaurants in Fairfax’s Little Ethiopia, as it’s hidden in the back of a small grocery store selling homemade berbere mix and Teddy Afro CDs. Persist, though, and you’ll find yourself surrounded by impeccably prepared stews that border on life-changing, made from the likes of spiced lentils, collard greens and juicy cubes of sauteed beef, each spooned onto a canvas of soft, sour injera bread. For the bravest diners, there is dullet, a wild, mineral-sharp mixture of raw liver and tripe, seasoned into submission with large amounts of diced jalapeño and cardamom. Maybe next time? Better to end with an espresso and a delicate square of tiramisu instead, both cultural holdovers from the days when Mussolini annexed Addis Ababa into his short-lived empire.—Garrett Snyder