--BY AASHIYANA ADHIKARI
Doing something out of the ordinary can be appealing because taking risks brings attention, but more often than not, success comes from the consistent execution of a formula.
Consistency is difficult, especially in the face of change. Nanglo Cafe & Pub, one of the oldest restaurants of Kathmandu, has successfully embraced that challenge. They opened in the mid-1970s and have been consistent with their excellent food and service. Located right next to Kamaladi Ganesthan, this restaurant is in a three-storied building that is 100 years old. With a seating capacity of 220, this eatery staffs 45 people.
“We provide our customers with three types of services, dine-in, takeaways and outdoor catering,” says Taijash S.L Kakshapati, managing director, Nanglo Cafe & Pub, adding, “We cater to outdoor events in a personalised way where we just don’t deliver them what’s on our regular menu but customise food items as per the needs and wants of our clients.”
At first, a meal at Nanglo seems like a standard experience. The server will let you know that everything from the pasta to the bruschetta is made in-house, and the menu is mostly Italian and Nepali comfort food, including Buffalo Wings and Sliced Steak, Meatballs, a selection of pasta, and several meat entrees.
The first meal that we were served here was the Newari Platter that consisted of Piro Aloo (re-fried potatoes seasoned in spice mix), Bhatmas Sandheko, Sukuti (air-dried meat marinated in mustard oil and spices), Bandel (wild Boar meat steam or fried), Swom Siya (pan seared stuffed goat lungs) and Chicken Choila (chicken meat pieces charred over grill and marinated in spices) with beaten rice. The fantastic mixture of flavours will linger on your palate for a long time. The sizzler has always been a staple dish of Nanglo, and why wouldn’t it be? It’s a must have when at Nanglo. Finally, we had another popular dish served here, Pasta Carbonara; the cheese will melt inside your mouth. It is very palatable. Nanglo is home to one of the most consistently great meals in Kathmandu city.
Nanglo has recently introduced breakfast to their menu. From traditional English breakfast to avocado or French toast, one can enjoy fresh morning delights here. According to Head Chef Ambar Gurung, who has been working in Nanglo for over three decades says, “The food here is very consistent with the same age old taste but with modern twists and turns as per the demand of time and customers.”
That consistency is what is most impressive about Nanglo. There is not a clunky dish on the menu. Four people could come, share everything, and each will have a different favourite. It might be the Chicken Chilli - perfectly cooked to be both crunchy and tender, and served with chicken cutlets so delicious that we practically bit off a server’s hand when he tried to take it away before we had finished.
The reason that Nanglo still fills up every single night - despite the turnover of the kitchen staff, and competition from flashier restaurants opening in fancier places than where it stands - is that you get precisely what you want every single time. It’s consistent, and it’s consistently fantastic. That is all we could ever ask for.