Best Ethiopian Breakfast

Royal Coffee

Critics' Picks

Judging by the name, decor, and website, the owners of Royal Coffee are proudest of their coffee. They're not wrong to be: it's fabulous—smooth and chocolatey, served with two little biscuits. But it's only half the draw of this place, the other half being a crazy-good breakfast menu, on which—as in all good breakfast everywhere—butter abounds. Though there are other options, which include American standards like bagels and omelets, I've mainly stayed true to two paths: the Ethiopian-style eggs, scrambled with tomatoes, peppers, onions, and spices, and served with injera and a little dish of chile powder; and the combo plates, comprising both veggie and nonveg options. Possibilities here: stewed favas, red lentils, or greens; kinche, cracked wheat cooked in butter; and my favorite, a dish of rough-torn chunks of flatbread sauteed in butter and berbere spices. It reminds me of fried Parmesan; fatty and chewy, it's like a dream of what nondairy cheese should be, if somehow nondairy cheese could be prepared with a bunch of butter.