We had a very nice meal at Mount Everest in Berkeley a few nights ago. Although, in retrospect, we spent a lot of time talking and drinking wine, so the food recollection is a bit muddled.
It is a big place (former Burger King). They were doing a good business, but it was still nowhere near full.
The menu claims "Nepalese and Indian Cuisine" though some dishes are from Bhutan (the apparent "main guy" there, a very polite (almost obsequious) fellow, is from Bhutan). However, my impression is that borders, cultures, ethnicity and food in that region are fluid.
Most of the dishes had an Indian name and an Indian theme. Portion sizes were on the small side (and correspondingly cheap), which is good because we got a wide selection. Service was very pleasant, if a bit amateur.
Chicken momos (dumplings), eight to a serving, with a blistering hot sauce. A Nepali dish. Undersalted, but tasty ($6.99).
Kukhura Ko Masu Ra Saag. Boneless chicken curry with spinach. The spinach was whole leaves, rather than the chopped spinach I associate with the term "saag." Very tasty, my favorite dish ($5.99).
Aaloo Baigan (eggplant/potato curry), Saag dal( both $4.99)
All the curries were rather on the dry side.
Lamb biryani ($7.99), lamb cooked in basmati rice. This was tasty.
Chatapate Kalcha ($1.99), naan with onion, mint, and green chili. Excellent.
Unfortunately, there was neither chutney nor pickle served, and none on the menu. We should have ordered Raita ($1.99) to moisten things. As I mentioned, the curries were rather more solid than I expected, so I did not feel a need for rice to sop up gravy.
No wine or beer ("Coming Soon" they said), but we brought our own wine (no corkage fee, yet). Maybe next time I'll bring my own chutney as well (I'll see if they charge chutnage).
We left them a very generous tip and still got out of there for $15 apiece.
2011 Shattuck (southeast corner of Shattuck and University)
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