Last Friday five of our post-barrel tasting group headed to the newly opened HImalayan Restaurant after happy hour at Bistro M on Windsor Town Green. This is the latest Nepalese restaurant to open in Sonoma County. I was asked to order for the table. After a complimentary yellow lentil soup, we tried:
Samosa chaat - Very good minty chutney and tamarind chutney mingled with thick, tangy yogurt over crunchy bits and chunks of samosas, crunchy apple slices (nice!) and garbanzos. This could have been excellent except that the samosas were cold, soft, and pre-fried instead of made to order. I would order this again, but ask that the samosas be freshly made.
Lamb momos - Beautifully pleated and eight to an order. Very heavy with a dense lump of gamey, ground meat as filling and not that interesting.
Lamb chuela (sp?) - Included in the salad menu, the cubes of marinated and grilled lamb were sliced and served over greens. Not as heavily spiced as I would prefer, yet a good job on grilling to perfect medium-rare and made with good quality tender lamb. Even better when we asked for some hot sauce --- the housemade condiment is excellent.
Spinach cauliflower - More accustomed to a spinach puree, the very fresh and whole leaf spinach combined with sweet, barely softened big florets of cauliflower made for a whole different take on the dish. Ordered "medium", the spice tones and sweetness of the vegetables were exactly in balance.
Basil lamb - From the daily specials board, this was a lamb curry with some chopped fresh basil leaves over top. Ordered "spicy", the heat that tasted like an extra spoon of cayenne contributed little else in flavor overtaking the rest of the elements. I would default to medium next time and then add some of the house condiment to adjust the heat myself. The lamb was high quality and the tomato-curry flavors permeated the meat.
The cauliflower and basil lamb dishes came with a choice of brown rice or white rice pilaf. We got one of each and I had a slight preference for the white rice, finding the brown rice somewhat overcooked and too soft.
We also tried two naans, and i asked for the first to be served with the lamb chuela and the second with the basil lamb. Our server seemed surprised that we didn't want one as a starter, as that seems to be the way other customers order them. The first one was cilantro-garlic naan, and did not rise much and was tough. The second one was a simple butter naan, and cooked much better with big bubbles, uneven depths, and crispy golden spots on the underside. A real difference in one night.
A word about the hot sauce condiment --- this is made in-house by cooking down tomato, habanero chiles, onion, garlic, cumin, coriander seed, fresh ginger, and probably a few other secret things. It's really terrific and I'm bringing a jar next time to buy some to take home.
610 McClelland Dr, Windsor, CA 95492
810 McClelland Dr, Windsor, CA 95492
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