Himalayan Kitchen in Mtn View
Yesterday I had a fantastic lunch at Himalayan Kitchen, a Nepali restaurant in Mtn View.
I ordered the "Chicken Chilly" (medium spicy--which was plenty) and a side of basmati rice. The chicken dish was chunks of deep fried chicken with bell peppers, onions, and a generous amount of hot peppers--imagine a very spicy sweet-and-sour chicken. They also have momos, which I haven't tried. This being my only experience with Nepali cuisine, I don't have any other data points except that my wife, tasting the leftovers, commented, "this is really good!"
They occupy the former location of the Mexican-Nepalese taqueria, which was a real find--I remember a shower curtain separated the "restaurant" business from the adjacent liquor-store business--and practically invisible from the street (El Camino). They've built an actual wall since the last time I visited, but charmingly, burritos are still on the menu.
820 E El Camino Real
Mountain View, CA 94040
Himalayan Kitchen has really transformed sometime in the past few months. It's expanded and become a much more full-scale southern Indian restaurant. Despite the name, there are few Nepali dishes here compared to the southern choices, both vegetarian and non-vegetarian. As such it fills a gap left when Peacock closed in advance of its building being torn down.
I started with Apollo fish and then had the Vijayawada chicken biryani. The Apollo fish was promising but a little mild in flavor compared to how I like this dish. The biryani was very good with excellent spicing.
The food hasn't been knock-your-socks-off great on any of my visits, but good enough to keep coming back every so often. Once gongura is back in season I'll want to try the versions they have on the menu, and see how they compare to the wonderful treats at Taste Buds. I may also try their chicken chow mein and see if that's similar to the great Nepali chicken chow chow I had in Boulder a couple weeks ago.
Anybody else been here lately and have favorite dishes? It's a large menu.
This place, located in an unpropitious strip-mall for two years (didn't it replace the neighborhood bar that was long there?), has good local buzz. But when we tried to go a few months ago, it was closed for remodeling (something the website and online commentaries omitted to disclose). Possibly that's related to the transformation you observed.
I agree, this place has really transformed over the past few months. I stopped in yesterday and gave their rather impressive lunch buffet a shot. The place is twice the size and the menu's offerings much vaster. It remains one of my favorite spots in SV for a delicious lunch.
Quite a lot has changed since I wrote it up, but the Himalayan Lamb Curry and Momos are as delicious as ever.
I popped by today - they offer a buffet during the week for lunch - $9.95 - no momos or samosas on the buffet but I saw lots of people ordering them from the menu. Pretty crowded with several large groups (10 or more) at noon.
A lot of chicken choices - the butter chicken was tender and flavorful. Some of the other meat dishes seemed a bit dry to me. The Marsala tea (tastes like chai to me but that's what the server told me) was hot and soothing.
Naan is brought to the table - no other gluten free choice like dosa or idly offered as part of the buffet.
It was ok but I wouldn't make a special trip to eat here.