Sunday, June 12, 2011

Restaurant: Himalayan Cafe, Pasadena

Old Town Pasadena now has a second Nepalese-Tibetan restaurant in its midst. Newbie Himalayan Cafe is worth a visit, but not quite as good as established Tibet Nepal House.


7 out of 10 Peppers = Spicy

The Details: I felt a little bit like I was cheating on Tibet Nepal House when Nick and I decided to check out the new Nepalese-Indian restaurant on the block. Newly opened in Old Town Pasadena (less than half a mile from Tibet Nepal House), Himalayan Cafe is a second Pasadena option for tasty Nepalese, Tibetan, and Indian cuisine.

It was near impossible for me to not compare the two restaurants, and Tibet Nepal House is better, hands-down, on virtually all counts, from food quality to decor to parking. (Himalayan Cafe doesn't validate anywhere; however, it is right next door to the School House public parking structure that offers free parking for your first 90 minutes.) But Himalayan Cafe is a worthy restaurant, so if the city is able to support two restaurants in the same niche (not to mention the four or so other Indian restaurants in Old Town!), then more power to it.

At the door, a friendly employee was passing out fliers and really working it to get people inside. Nick was already seated, so I didn't have to be convinced, but I stopped to talk to the employee for a minute anyway. Once inside, I saw that it was fairly busy on this Saturday night, but not as busy as Tibet Nepal House tends to be (though that could just be because Himalayan Cafe is new). The decor is OK. It has some South Asian-themed wall hangings and wood carvings, but the look isn't cohesive.

We were seated at a table by the kitchen doors, which I would not recommend because the smoke caused me to cough intermittently throughout the meal. The server was too aggressive when taking our order. He repeatedly kept trying to get us to add extra stuff to our order that we didn't want. Plus, the extra Nick did want -- Aloo Achar -- he informed us the restaurant was out of. Bummer!

Luckily, the kitchen had Chicken Momos, a Nepalese dumpling that's a perennial favorite. These were yummy. I don't think I've ever had a bad momo, come to think of it (is "momo" the singular of "momos"? that sounds so odd), and these were certainly as good as any others I've had.

Nick wanted to try to Shrimp Masala, described at tandoor-baked fresh tiger shrimp served in cream sauce with Himalayan spices. It was a nice sweet sauce. The shrimp pieces were smaller than I expected, but Nick said he liked the size of them for their texture.

Of course, I took it upon myself to order us something with vegetables, so I opted for the Chicken Saag, described as boneless chicken and garden fresh spinach with Himalayan spices. Nick didn't like the chicken, saying he thought it tasted "cheap," but I thought the chicken was perfectly tender. I did think the spinach needed more flavor.

The restaurant has a pretty extensive rice and breads section, including six different kinds of naan. We were in the mood for just plain Basmati Bhat (plain basmati steamed rice with a few peas), which is $2.99 and was enough to share.

So, we don't have a new favorite go-to Nepalese restaurant, but I would eat here again. I feel like for every three or four times we eat at Tibet Nepal House (where we go probably more often than any other restaurant; it may be tied with Domenicos in Long Beach, an Italian restaurant with an amazing ground pepperoni pizza, as our go-to restaurant for when we want guaranteed good food) we'd go to Himalayan Cafe once.

Have you been to Himalayan Cafe yet? What did you think of it? Have you tried the buffet? I'm definitely curious about that.

Himalayan Cafe, 36 S Fair Oaks Ave., Pasadena. (626) 564-1560.

8 comments:

  1. Oddly enough, the only time I've had Nepalese food was in Japan. I know, it confuses me too. But it was SO tasty! And I've been craving it every since I came back so the next time I'm in Pasadena I will definitely check this out. Thank you for the lovely review!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Not as good as Tibet-Nepal house.

    ReplyDelete
  3. You can witness a complete makeover of the interiors with so many options available to pick from

    ReplyDelete
  4. I am really enjoying reading your well written articles. It looks like you spend a lot of effort and time on your blog. I have bookmarked it and I am looking forward to reading new articles. mahapoker.co

    ReplyDelete
  5. I really admire the important ideas that you offer in the content. I am looking forward for more important thoughts and more blogs. ibcbet.lynsbo.com

    ReplyDelete
  6. Don't let abuts as well as all of a sudden alter every thing. Particularly at the start all of us much better longines replica sale along with less objectives, much better begin easy as well as described. We're pleased to begin little so when we're accustomed to tackle problems rapidly we are able to progressively boost the problems. In the event that we're awaiting the best second for you to get longines replica sale carried out and prevent waiting, we're able to end up being waiting around many years. Try to perform points actually if you don't such as all of them, actually factors to consider that you simply perform those activities that you don't such as very first, they'll be from your method as well as don't have to consider omega replica sale once again. Let's imagine you don't especially appreciate operating or even likely to a fitness center, however, you adore songs. You'll operate or even teach having a transportable music player to create you like much more that which you Aare performing actually if you don't enjoy it. I am certain you receive the actual cartier replica sale. Obtaining points carried out correctly occasionally entails someone else. A detailed buddy or even a relative is actually perfect, particularly if they're currently familiar with not really waiting. Battle uncertainties as well as worries by what you will possibly not have the ability or even wish to accomplish cartier replica sale. We have to enjoy self-motivation that will reinforce your own self-esteem. Try to in no way give up exactly what you do as well as remain good whatsoever period.

    ReplyDelete
  7. There is noticeably a bundle to know about this. I assume you made certain nice points in features also. Information Information Information

    ReplyDelete
  8. Coffee is somewhat like a social lubricant. It keeps some heads together discussing over something. shishareview.org Peace cafe is another one where you can spend some real good time.

    ReplyDelete

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...