Delina is a lot more than just a restaurant.
Perhaps it’s because they’re flying the flag for Ethiopian & Eritrean food almost singlehandedly in West London (there are considerably more Ethiopian places on the other points of the London compass), and perhaps feel a responsibility to spread the delicious gospel as far and wide as they can. Whatever the case, the place wears as many hats as it can, including selling spices & spice blends, acting as a bakery & deli, putting on regular cooking classes, running coffee ceremonies, and hosting supper clubs, among many other things. Like being a restaurant and cafe, too.
You’ll find it in Shepherd’s Bush Market, where it’s taken up residence in a beautiful old brick railway arch. Inside, the walls are decorated with colourful Ethiopian artworks, and scattered wooden tables, all lit by dangling strings of festoon lighting.
If you fancy popping in for a meal, you’ll get an excellent deal on one of their signature injeras, It’s basically a sourdough-risen flatbread with a unique, spongy texture is not just a food item; it’s a utensil. Made from teff flour, which is gluten-free and packed with nutrients, injera is used to scoop up bites of stews, salads, and other dishes. Here you can get one loaded with six various dishes, all for just £12. But if you fancy something more conventional, there are stews, curries and the like too.
So, back to those other Swiss Army knife attachments that the place is packing – there’s the cooking school, in which you’ll get to make your own injera on their huge, specially designed hot plate, as well as putting together some of the dishes you’ll be scooping up with it, and then naturally eating it all.
Or there’s the coffee ceremony – Ethiopia is widely credited with being the birthplace of coffee itself, so there’s a pretty deep well of tradition here. The ceremony involves them actually roasting the green coffee cherries over an open flame in a pan. The smell is intoxicating. Then, they’ll grind the blackened beans with a stone pestle, before boiling them in a jebena coffee pot. Then, the coffee is poured into small ‘sini’ cups and served with popcorn.
And of course, there’s the off-the-shelf stuff, too. You can take home anything from lentils, to berbere spices, chickpea mix, and teff zing crisps made from sour dough teff flour. But of course, if you’ve ever had a takeaway coffee…
…you’ll be used to getting Ethiopian cuisine to-go.
NOTE: Delina is open now, Thursday to Saturday. You can find out more, and make a booking at the site right here.
Delina | 176 Shepherd’s Bush Market, London W12 8DF
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