George and Julia's Vegan Underground


Surviving Napa continued…It was one of our final Napa nights and Julia had had enough. Translation being, it was inconceivable that we had to piece together a our vegan meals relaying on the kindness of the restaurant’s staff or by piecing together assorted side dishes. We’ve heard on several occasions, the “vegan anywhere” meal is salad and fries. The guy at the local tavern Hydrobar rained on that parade, explaining that in addition to fries, the oil they used also cooked chicken fingers and so their fries were probably not vegan. Some things I don’t want to know.

This time Julia was determined to find this town’s “vegan underground” and so I let her drive. It was obvious to me that the wineries were hogging all the local ad space. There were vegans here, we could smell it. Just when I was ready to give up, Julia found a gem. We ended up in nearby Santa Rosa.

Abyssina was a quaint Ethiopian joint. Julia happens to love her some Ethiopian. Local internet reviewers raved about the food but not necessarily about the service.

Julia got a Sunkist, me a Dr. Pepper (we were on vacation so we were going nuts). The water may have been self-serve or not. I decided it was. The woman had that I’m-the-owner vibe, sweet like a Grandma but not as old. She informed me that she loved New York but the city’s Ethiopian food sucked.

When asking for vegan, she pointed to an entire page on the menu, labeled so. We got the vegan combo, lentils, potatoes, spinach, corn, and raw veggies on that Ethiopian sponge bread. We ate it traditional style, no utensils. I have to say it was one of the best Ethiopian meals, I’ve ever had. It hit the spot and made our bellies very happy. Thanks Abyssina!

Abyssinia is at 913 4th Street, Santa Rosa, California


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