I don’t think I’ve ever written a restaurant review, but I feel obligated today.
I have now eaten lunch twice at Everest Cafe (Nepalese Cuisine).
Everest Cafe is on 19th street and Washington.
(1916 Washington Ave, 63103 – 314-621-2021)
They are open for Dinner every night of the week, and open for lunch Mon-Sat. The Washington neighborhood is interesting in that some buildings are renovated, but next door the building might be abandoned with broken windows, etc. Some people might not feel comfortable going there at night, but there should be no worries for lunch.
Inside Everest Cafe is well-kept and tidy. You wouldn’t know what the outside looked like from the inside. It has a casual and laid back atmosphere, and the food is served cafeteria style.
For lunch, prior to Sept, they offered a 3-entree plate and a 4-entree plate. Descriptions of my first encounters with Everest are below. As of Sept 1, 2004 they are serving an all-you-can-eat buffet during lunch hours for $7.50.
My first time around, I ordered Fire Spicy Chicken, a Spinach and potato combination, and Vegetable Samosa, with a side of rice. (The side of rice also comes included in all meals.) It was filling, and the food was excellent.
You’re not expecting it when you come into the place, and they serve the food on paper plates, but the food is definitely prepared with the tastebuds in mind.
The fire spicy chicken I didn’t feel had a lot of fire, though some might. It was certainly spicy, but it doesn’t burn the tastebuds. They will allow you to taste any of the entrees while in the line, so you don’t have to worry about ordering something and finding out you don’t like it once you reach the table. The vegetable samosa is reminiscent of the knishes I grew up on at my Grandma’s shabbat table. “Curry buffs made from potatoes, fresh onion and coriander, wrapped in a delicious homemade pastry.”
This time I ordered the Tofu and Peas, Gokhali Chicken, and Masala Bread. Once again everything was tasty. I’m not usually a huge fan of tofu, and I probably won’t order it often, but the Gokhali Chicken was great. I actually liked the Gokhali more than the Fire Spicy chicken I had on Friday. The Gokhali isn’t as spicy, but it does still have a bite.
I’m going through the entrees/items slowly as I am only ordering 3 at a time. Still left for me to try are the beef and broccoli, lentil soup, and a few pork dishes. The latter will remain untasted by me for religious reasons; and similarly, I am somewhat surprised they have beef and broccoli since I believe the cow is considered sacred by most Nepalese. Apparently Everest is willing to alter their menu for the American tastebuds.
I should also mention their service. Yes, you order the food cafeteria style, but everyone is friendly, and the staff will come by your table and make sure you are enjoying your meal, and offer you refills on your drink.
They’ve only been in business for four months I believe. There are some news stories posted on the wall about the owner, and he’s a former pediatrician who has actually climbed Mount Everest. It’s not an area of town that one is likely to know about a restaurant unless one happens to drive by it to work, or through word of mouth. And since I enjoyed it so much, and want it to succeed, I’m helping out with the latter.
(If you want to try them for dinner they are open until 9 pm Mon-Thurs, and 10 PM Fri-Sun)
Friday, Sept 3
Today I had Rice, Gorkhali chicken (about a double serving), Fire Spicy Chicken, Spinach and Potato, Masala Bread, Lentil Soup, and Yogurt Fruit Salad. I was leaving filled on just 3 items, but I certainly can’t complain that their success has led them to expand their hours and go to a buffet. The increase in the bill from $5 to $7.50 though may cause me to go less often for lunch when I’m dining alone. (The buffet is certainly worth it, its just not in my budget, unless it becomes a social or business lunch.) They’ve added a salad bar containing a yogurt-fruit salad, rice pudding, and mixed greens. Their delicious mo-mos seem to have been relegated to their dinners, and Saturday lunch, which is disappointing. But the rest of their food is still cooked to the same perfection. The service (refills of drinks/clearing of empty buffet plates) still excellent.