Lal Durbar Restaurant specializing on Nepali cuisine
There are few restaurants in Kathmandu that specialize only in traditional Nepali cuisines. And rare are the five-stars that solely serve the traditional cuisines. Not anymore, recently established restaurant inside the Yak and Yeti hotel in Durbarmarg, known as Lal Durbar Restaurant, is an effort of Niresh Thapa to cater traditional Nepali food to the nationals as well as international foodies.
A student of hotel management, Thapa has an experience of working on national as well as international five-star hotels for about 12 years and he has used his experience to establish a restaurant inside the palace (Lal Durbar) built by the Rana Prime Minister Bir Sumsher. The restaurant is a joint venture of Thapa with Birendra Dawadi, Sandeha Aryal and Amit Bhandari.
He got the idea of establishing a Nepali restaurant side by side of the Platinum disco that he used to operate. It took them six months to give the restaurant a Nepali feel. The building itself holds a great historical significance. It is a great place to enjoy Nepali food along with some wonderful Nepali music because of the structure and the history of the place. Dining inside the former palace of a Rana ruler and enjoying the six or nine course meal along with live performance of Nepali music is definitely an experience no one could resist. The restaurant has the capacity to serve hundred guests at one time and the musical performance is operated by Govinda Dangol Himalchuli Culture Group every evening from 7 to 9pm. The group performs traditional Nepali music representing various ethnic and cultural groups. Also, the staffs wear different traditional outfits which go very well to the ambeince of the entire restaurants giving it a Nepali feel. Moreover, the utensils also reflect the Nepali way.
Although the restaurant is inside a five star hotel, the price here is reasonable. The owner requests the guests to come here with at least two hours with them and not to be in hurry so they could enjoy the meal. The meal is served in six or nine course and it has become popular especially among the tourists with a desire to enjoy the Nepali way of dining. The six course meal starts with samaybajhi and then moves on to makaiko (corn) roti and rajma or mushroom curry, mo: mo:, quatiko (mixed grains) soup and the full course concludes with Sikarni. Also, traditional Nepali liquor is available here.
Enjoying the Nepali meal inside a Rana palace on traditional utensils along with live Nepali folk songs in the background and the staffs wearing traditional outfits serving you is the best way of experiencing Nepali way of dining. Hence, for a complete experience of Nepali Royal dining, one must reserve their seat in the Lal Durbar Restaurant.