NEW ORLEANS (press release) – Addis NOLA, one of Louisiana’s most exciting Ethiopian Restaurants, will officially open to the public on Thursday, November 10, on Bayou Road – New Orleans’ oldest passageway and a bustling hub for Black-owned businesses. With 13 small businesses and nine black-owned businesses, Addis NOLA is proud to become an added pillar in the community representing successful Black entrepreneurship. Located at 2514 Bayou Road, the restaurant will start with dinner service only, with lunch to follow.

“We’re excited to open in our new space and take Addis NOLA to the next level,” says General Manager Prince Lobo, who opened Addis NOLA with his mother/founder Dr. Biruk Alemayehu and father Chef Jaime Lobo.  “Opening on Bayou Road, the Black Wall Street of New Orleans, allows us to embrace our culturally-rich community and shine a spotlight on one of the best-kept secrets in American History.”

When Addis NOLA first opened on Broad Street in August 2019, it gave New Orleanians a place to celebrate the cultural heritage of East Africa through an authentic communal Ethiopian dining experience. Since then, the family-owned restaurant has captured the attention of locals and visitors and has become a haven to bring people, cultures, and traditions together through great food and drink.

The oldest road in New Orleans and amongst the oldest in the U.S., Bayou Road served as the epicenter of black and Native commercial exchange. Today, the colorful corridor is teeming with a variety of Black-owned and Afro-Caribbean restaurants, shops and businesses, transporting visitors back and forth between history and modern day. Being a part Bayou Road is a testament to the family’s labor of love and their vision to continue building the community, while also allowing for exciting changes and growth. The new space will double the capacity and bring an array of new amenities including a full bar and a designated coffee ceremony stage, where the aromatic ritual of coffee roasting will take place. It will also allow for more creativity in the kitchen. “Our new home will allow us to expand the menu and create a setting that is more evocative of Ethiopia,” adds Lobo.

Of course, diners can expect the same core menu that has earned the restaurant multiple awards, featuring stews, stir-fry, specialty dishes and fresh vegetables. Most dishes are served with a choice of rice or injera – a fermented pancake-like, stretchy flatbread that takes almost three days to make. In traditional Ethiopian cuisine, injera takes the place of utensils, with diners tearing up bits of the flatbread to gather stews and salads.

Sambusas make for the perfect starter and are perfectly crisped triangular pastries stuffed with beef, lentils or collard greens. Tibs, a staple of Ethiopian gastronomy, is a hybrid of stir-fry and stew featuring a choice of protein (fish, beef, chicken, lamb, shrimp or mushroom) and flavored with sauteed onion, tomato, jalapeño, kibbeh and berbere – a fiery, bright red aromatic blend of garlic, ginger, cumin, coriander and other spices. Addis NOLA’s sumptuous Doro Wot is Ethiopia’s signature stew and is slow-cooked for 24 hours with chicken, caramelized onion, garlic and berbere, topped with hard-boiled eggs. Other Wots are also on offer including fish, lamb and shrimp. Specialty dishes at Addis NOLA are standouts and include Mar Mitmita Shrimp – house-harvested honey glazed spicy gulf shrimp inspired by Ethiopian honey wine; Godin Tibs – melt-in-your-mouth chunks of short ribs, perfectly grilled and then sautéed with onions, tomatoes, jalapeños, rosemary and berbere; and Whole Fried Snapper served with jasmine rice and Addis tomatim sauce.

Vegetarians and vegans will find a bountiful selection of sumptuous dishes at Addis NOLA. Available as entrées or sides, options include Red LentilsCollard GreensCabbageBeetsGreen LentilsYellow Split Peas and Shiro – a silky puree of chickpeas and tomatoes cooked until smooth. Diners can also indulge in Mushroom Tibs and the Veggie Combo which features a selection of all.  Speaking of veggies, Addis NOLA will continue to host its famed Vegan Monday in the new location, serving up Bayenetu – a taste of everything Vegan at Addis NOLA.

Desserts at Addis NOLA are equally enticing and include The King’s Bread Pudding, a vegetarian riff on a  New Orleans staple made with croissants and garnished with fresh fruit and the Addis Affogato – house-made vanilla ice cream, chocolate cookie crumbles and caramel, drizzled with Ethiopian coffee. The restaurant’s signature Traditional Coffee Ceremony will now take place at the brand-new coffee ceremony stage where Lobo (or other staff members) will roast Ethiopian coffee beans from the Yirgachafe Region over a flame before wafting the scent around the restaurant for customers to enjoy.  This authentic ritual is a lynchpin in Ethiopian culture. Additional beverages include housemade spiced teaswatermelon lemonade, and ginger mint iced tea.

With a full bar in the new space, Addis NOLA will highlight Black-owned wine and spirit producers with a variety of signature housemade cocktails, beers, and wines such as O.P.P and Chasing Lions. Under the direction of Turning Tables founder Touré Folkes and wine consultant Roxy Eve Navaraez, specialty libations include The Woo – Housemade Ethiopian honey wine and gin; Addis Smash – seasonal fruit, bourbon, lemon, and fresh mint; Ode to A – Addis NOLA’s Sazerac variation; Prince’s Cup – a twist the classic local staple with housemade Pimm’s; and Kahltini– hand-roasted Ethiopian coffee, Kahlua cream liqueur and Vodka, served with housemade ice cream upon request.

Designed by Nomita Joshi Interior Design and OI Studio, the 2,500 square feet space will combine traditional Ethiopian aesthetics with modern elements. Colors reflect the Ethiopian landscape with pops of brown, red, yellow, green, and dashes of gold, against a neutral backdrop. Upon entering guests are greeted by the warm amber lighting adorned by large wicker baskets at eye-level. Just to the left is the lounge area with orange leather sofas and gold jute pendant lighting, creating the perfect perch for waiting or casual dining. The main dining area, which seats 62, features dark woods with splashes of yellow; hand-painted columns by local artist Kentrice Schexnayder; family-style tables; and a hand wash station to allow for customary washing before the meal. Three thatched-roof semi-circular pods, custom-made by OI Studio, serve as the focal point of the restaurant and are contemporary versions of Gojo bets, traditional round thatched roof houses. Distressed wood, rich wine-colored velvet, gold details, and sheer curtains all work harmoniously to create a modern interpretation of rural life in Ethiopia and are perfect for semi-private dining.

A stunning bar, seating eight, sits in the center of the restaurant and features a backdrop of black and gold wallpaper reminiscent of the highlands in Ethiopia. Guests can enjoy dining at the bar, along with specialty cocktails and wine made by the owners themselves. The stage, which will host Addis NOLA’s beloved coffee-roasting ritual, is adjacent to the bar and will also feature light, live music on occasion. From start to finish, design to dishes, cocktails to coffee, everything at Addis NOLA’s new Bayou Road location is certain to transport guests to the Motherland.

Addis NOLA will opens to the public Thursday, November 10, in its new location at 2514 Bayou Road in New Orleans. The restaurant will serve dinner Wednesday – Monday, 5 – 10 p.m. (closed Tuesdays). Weekend brunch forthcoming. For additional information and to make reservations, please visit Follow Addis NOLA on Instagram: @addisnola and on Facebook: @addisnola2019