It's a Date!
by Fiorella Valdesolo, New York Observer contributor, 12/08/2008
2084 Frederick Douglass Blvd. • 212-662-0620
There's something sensual about eating with your hands. Perhaps it's that it feels slightly savage, or maybe it's just that messiness, and therefore finger-licking, is inevitable. Plenty of said finger-licking goes on at Zoma, the city's most elegant Ethiopian eatery. A tray of hot towels starts meals here—subway traces should be removed before dining. The optimum, and most wallet-friendly, way to sample Zoma's offerings are combination platters, available in meat and vegetarian iterations. Injera bread is moist, greaseless, and spongy, excellent for soaking up every morsel. Gomen, ginger-laced collard greens, shiro wett, a berbere-coated mélange of chickpeas and lentils, kik aletcha, a savory purée of split peas, and doro wett, a spicy stew of fall-off-the-bone-tender chicken topped with a hard-boiled egg, are the hands-down favorites. The wine list is short, but has a number of reasonably priced options. There is just one detail Zoma overlooks: Those hot towels should make a repeat appearance at the end of every meal.
Browse a lifetime's worth of drinking and dining reviews at Observer.com.