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Mar 27, 2007 11:13 AM

Durbar 84 - Nepalese/Indian - 54/55 - Durham

Durbar 84, the new Nepalese/Indian restaurant next door to Vit Goal on highway 55, is open, barely. They're just doing buffet at lunch, and the counterman said that they're slowly building up their dinner menu options.

I'm going to try to hold off on wearing the critic-hat for now, since they just opened, and at least one of the bays on one steam table was broken, so two of the dishes were basically room temperature. Several of the others were lukewarm. I'm not sure how they got past their initial inspection, but maybe the thing just blew out, I dunno.

The food was mostly relatively-familiar-looking Indian type food . . . green beans, cauliflower with turmeric, dal, basmati rice, naan, tandoori chicken. I'm not at all well-versed in Nepalese cuisine, but there were some dishes that were less-familiar to me: chicken/turkey meatballs in a curry sauce, some dumplings with some kind of ground meat (lamb, maybe), and most mysteriously, "black eyed peas with bamboo shoots" and potatoes.

I thought the meatballs & dumplings were pretty good; the black-eyed pea dish was interesting & odd.

Seasoning levels were all over the map; I'll give them a few weeks to settle down before I go back. And hopefully they'll get that steam-table fixed . . .

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  1. Oh man! I'm so glad you posted this...I'm moving to Durham and love Nepalese. Had it in SF. I hope they end up doing it well.

    1. I drive by Durbar every day on my way to work. The menu sounds promising, though the steam table does sound a bit sketchy. If anyone else has braved a visit, please let us know.

      1. Sounds like being in Nepal itself! Wonder if the ground meat are from water buffalo (I think I'm joking). The thing I remember from my couple weeks in Nepal is that I ate some version of dal bhat at least once a day, and that each dish was different from all the others.

        Thanks for the heads up, I need to spend some time in the vicinity of 54/55. I totally hate the traffic around there so I never go there, but I do need to hit some of the dining options.

        1 Reply
        1. re: dagwich

          I have eaten at this establishment once for dinner and a couple of times for the lunch buffet. On the buffet, the butter chicken, chicken curry, meatballs, naan, samosas, tandoori chicken, and kheer have been very tasty. For dinner, a friend and I had curry chicken and chicken tikka masala and both were prepared to order and the quality was excellent.

        2. I went for lunch one day last week. Steam table still seemed to be broken - some food was at room temperature. There wasn't a very good selection of items on the buffet and I wasn't blown away by any of it. He told me they had just opened - so perhaps it will get better. I'll wait a few weeks and try again...