Quartered in the ground floor and spread across the lawn inside the compound walls of a Thamel house that, more often than not, doesn’t strike a sight is the Villa Everest. I first heard of it for the Karaoke they have once every week. Of late, I heard of it for the food that turns up on the plates.

 



Korean is usually dear to palates that are fond of pungent foods – ones that classify as Tamasic in the Hindu culinary taxonomy. I being one that loves such food and my sister being one who knows I do, she invited me up for a game of Uno cards with some yum stuff. I’m indebted to her, thank you sister!
 

5 Ws

Where’s it located?
Thamel, somewhere near the
GAA Hall
What to wear?
No dress code
Why drop in?
Brilliant Korean fares
When to visit?
Afternoons and evenings, I
recommend reservations for
large groups
How much to carry?
A filling meal for two comes at
less than 1500 bucks..

Eating experiences during the cold are dominated by soupy fares. So have my recent times at Villa Everest been. We don’t even look at the menu before we’ve asked for warm water and Miso soup. The look of the soup is warming, the smell lifting and the taste engaging. The condiments are well-balanced and a portion is usually fit for two people who go for two helpings. My only turn off, and a big one, is the quantity of potatoes in the soup. We all know potatoes are real good at face saving jobs but having people crush a bite of potato with every alternate spoon of the soup conspicuously hints towards either a nervous cook or an impoverished kitchen. With the sea-weed soup, I make it a point to have it before anything else or not have it at all. Because of the subtle taste, it generally loses charm if had after any strong food. Have it in the beginning and you’ll be all praises.

At Villa Everest, we most often order for two rounds of side dishes at one time and ask for meat according to our preferences. The best part about the side dishes, for me that is, is the garlic that comes with the strong pickle. I have the tendency to finish off the Tibetan garlic even before any meaty appearance is observed on the table. Plus the kimchi, my all time favorite. The aftermath – I’m left complaining about the burning sensation in my gut. I almost always go for either the Dak Bokum – succulent chicken shreds cooked in an engaging sauce with Chinese peppers and shallots or the Chicken barbeque – small boneless cuts with crispy and slightly charred exteriors. Tear off a lettuce, dip a garlic clove in the pickle and put it on the leaf, add a radish kimchi, top it up with the chicken and pickled shallots, fold the leaf and devour – heavenly. If you choose to cook your pork, grease the pan with some pork fat, sear it over until it’s crisp and repeat the earlier steps. You can also have the pork only; just dip it in the sesame oil and the salt, there you are.

Vegetarians however, have limited options. Fried vegetables – sliced Chinese peppers, carrots and potatoes, bound together not tight with a batter, deep-fried and served with some Kikkoman sauce are a regular order for us. It’s implicitly sweet and lightly salted – just good enough. Fried tofu makes for another veggie meal, unfortunately not ranking quite high, on my index at least.

My Verdict
Villa Everest is a basic eating out spot without the expected interiors and ambience of a Thamel restaurant. Though some items make more than one appearance on the menu, a wise selection of food is sure to lure the gastronome in you. The soups are brilliant and the side dishes filling. For the ones who love to cook their food, they have all the freedom to do so. If you are really hungry or if you really love Korean food, drop in and you won’t leave dissatisfied. Don’t take just my words for it though; the place is brimming with people almost any evening of the week. !

 

Furnishings   Basic, I like the tables with stoves on them Inside outside   Properly used space, equally apt for couples and groups Cutlery   Simple and general, need absorbent napkins Service   Friendly yet grumpy at times Restroom   Clean enough My rating   (and a nod) food is the only thing I love here

Furnishings   Basic, I like the tables with stoves on them
Inside outside   Properly used space, equally apt for couples and groups
Cutlery   Simple and general, need absorbent napkins
Service   Friendly yet grumpy at times
Restroom   Clean enough
My rating   (and a nod) food is the only thing I love here