Famous among the people of Chandragadi and Dhanusmod area in Jhapa district in eastern Nepal, Dhanusmodko Chatpate is one of the most popular and bestselling after school, after college and afternoon snacks sold in the Dhanusmod Chowk of Chandragadi. It is one of the highest selling and most popular food items in the area. Among all of the chatpate walas in Chandragadi area, no one could top these two chatpate shops laying just on two opposite sides of the B.P. Koirala effigy erected in the middle of the chowk.
It is known as Dhanusmodko Chatpate after the name of the place and ingredients and usually the people do not bother to ask the name of the maker or the seller and just refer to them as dai (brother) or uncle. There aren’t any boards boasting a nameplate or a wide sitting area apart from one or two benches installed there. The two shops make the perfect tangy and spicy chatpate that keeps tempting you for more.
The first shop is on the left side of the chowk while you walk from the Army Barrack located there to the Dhanusmod chowk. It is a small tin-roofed hut-like structure that only has space enough for the dai to sit and keep his ingredients and utensils. A small bench in front of the shop serves as the sitting place for the customers and some also make themselves comfortable on the edges of the shop (made up of wood). This place is usually packed with the customers almost throughout the day and the business is at peak especially during the evenings and afternoon as the people drop by to catch a bite while they return home from their respective schools, colleges or offices. The place only sells chatpate with a dai making an serving it to all customers. It is the oldest one of the two chatpate pasals in the chowk.
Another shop is a little further than this and lay on your right, opposite to the temple situated in the chowk. The proper sitting arrangement with two benches under a tin shade has made it more popular and also the taste of the chatpate has added up to its popularity. The pasal provides a comfortable place to sit while you wait your turn for your order to be served. This shop is relatively larger and as it is housed in the shopkeeper’s house itself and also the fact that this dai has constructed a concrete building, even if its small, with the income of his pasal shows the popularity of his shop. The dai along with didi (his wife) serves to the needs and orders of the customers and initially a paan pasal (betal leaf shop), this shop got more popular after it added chatpate into its product list. The shop also houses a general store that sells products like biscuits, chocolates, copies, etc. along with the spicy tangy chatpate and sweet and juicy paan.
If you ever happen to visit Jhapa, especially Chandragadi, make sure to pay a visit to these two chatpate pasals and enjoy the best chatpate in town.