New and Improved

Owner, Lula Abduljabar, Fatuma’s Ethiopian Cafe.October 12, 2021

Lula Abduljabar opened Fatuma’s Ethiopian Café in January 2020, two months before the world was affected by the global pandemic.

She endured on again, off again closures and made business decisions that had her authentic café stay afloat. The affordable rent downtown allowed her to move from her first location to her second, and she says the community ordered weekly frozen meals that she’d deliver around the city when her doors were closed due to COVID-19 regulations.

“I wouldn’t be open if it weren’t for the community’s endless support,” says Abduljabar. “There isn’t any other Ethiopian restaurant or café here, and I wanted to be the first to bring the cuisine experience to Medicine Hat.”

Now that regulations have started to lift, Abduljabar signed a lease on a newer and larger space in August 2021. She will open her new location on 3rd street in downtown Medicine Hat on Tuesday, September 14.

“I wanted to stay in the downtown area, because whenever I drive home at the end of the day, the streets are lively with both vehicle and foot traffic,” says Abduljabar. “The downtown is also full of culture and history, and I think that really invites people to stay down here.”

The new location will allow the local business owner to have a larger seating area that accommodates the community members. There is space outside her storefront for a patio set-up.

“I’m happy to not only be the first one to offer Ethiopian recipes to the community, but the first woman as well,” says Abduljabar. “The number of women who own businesses in the city is inspiring, and it encouraged me to open my café.”

Not only did Abduljabar bring her signature cuisine with her to Medicine Hat, but the recipes are inspired by her late grandmother, whose name is Fatuma.

The dishes include proteins like beef, chicken, chickpeas and lentils, and vegetables like cabbage, carrots, beets and potatoes. Any dish can be served with injera, a signature Ethiopian bread that is made with a grain flour called, teff flour, or rice. Abduljabar says the dishes are seasoned with a wide range of Ethiopian spices that complement one another.

In her, almost, two years of owning a business downtown, Abduljabar has built friendships with other local business owners. There is a supportive atmosphere she’s always been grateful for.

Fatuma’s Ehtiopian Café can be found at 102 554 3rd Street S.E.



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