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While preparing for a humanitarian media project I am leading to Ethiopia for SalaamGarage, I was inspired to take my research one step further and head south to Little Ethiopia in Washington DC.

I discovered DC Metro Tours Little Ethiopia Walking Tour by chance on Twitter. The tour starts with a traditional Ethiopian breakfast followed by the traditional Ethiopian coffee ceremony. Lunch comes soon on the heels of the coffee ceremony and after about 3 hours, it winds up at an Ethiopian-owned Italian dessert shop.

I grew up in the DC suburbs. Back then there was a particular Ethiopian restaurant in Adams Morgan that didn’t card us for our “innocent” orders of Irish coffees. My love for Ethiopian food was born then. It is my favorite cuisine, one best explored stateside in Washington DC; the Washington DC metro area is home to about 200,000 people of Ethiopian descent, the largest population of Ethiopians outside Ethiopia.

The restaurants are concentrated around 18th Street, U Street, and the newest concentration is on 9th Street, where there is a cluster of about 10 Ethiopian restaurants.

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About The Author

Maggie Soladay

Maggie Soladay is an editorial photography editor, producer, photographer and activist based in NYC. She is the NYC chief of SalaamGarage, a humanitarian media organization that facilitates meaningful storytelling by partnering with international and local non-profits. She also believes that a good story can be told with whatever a person has. In this case, a point shoot camera, the Lumix LX3.

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