It’s all about the momos with Qatar Eating! So we headed for a late lunch at Gurkha Nepali Restaurant which specialises in Nepali cuisine, and apparently has the best momos in town.
It’s a neighbourhood restaurant, the kind of place where local residents may pop in for a quick bite (they do offer takeaway and delivery). If you’re a friendly sort of person you may find yourself chatting to the staff while waiting for the food.
It’s a Qatar Eating Food Adventure!
This Qatar Eating Adventure is part of a new series that will encourage us all to get out and about and to (re-)discover Qatar’s local restaurants. From cheap eats and special venues to hidden treasures and forgotten favourites, you can expect an interesting foodie adventure with the Qatar Eating Team.
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Gurkha Nepali Restaurant Doha
Before we get to the momos you need to know a few things about the restaurant.
The restaurant is clean, and is bigger than it looks on the ouside. It feels a little lost in time, even though it only opened in 2015, but the little touches of Nepal does bring a little character to the place.
The restaurant has two floors of seating; the family section is upstairs but accessibility is an issue as you will have to go up a small metal staircase. It’s an interesting feature as it was quite possibly the management’s solution for internal stair access. We imagine the upstairs does become the overflow section when the downstairs space is full.
The menu is focused on a few main dishes such as noodles, curries, soups, and thalis. For a taste of Nepal brave foodies amongst you many want to give the Dhido Thali a try (we have our eye on it for a return visit). Dhido is a paste-like dough made from water and wheat, and is eaten with your hands as part of a main meal in Nepal.
Vegetarian snack options are also available such as vegetable pakoras and chili paneer. They also have 10 different types of momos – its basically meat, chicken or vegetarian momos cooked in three different ways. We of course requested momos – choosing the vegetable steamed momos, and the fried beef momos. The Chicken Thukpa soup and Vegetable Thali finished off our order.
Not Your Average Momo
Momos reflect the influence that Tibetan culture had on Nepali cuisine. Momos are basically stuffed dumplings, or Nepali dimsum to fans! They are served either steamed, fried or tossed with a sauce made with tomatoes and chili. Our momos came with a heavy dipping since which added extra flavour to the dish.
The steamed momos had a delicate and fine dough encasing our vegetable filling. They were delicious but the stuffing was very much one note with the flavour of cabbage dominating. Fried was definitely the way to go as we experienced foodie joy munching through the crispy exterior to reveal the juicy and seasoned beef filling. We look forward to trying the chili momos to see if we can handle the heat!
The Thukpa soup is similar to a ramen dish – the stock was well flavoured with a nice fat ratio, and the soup had a fragrant scent to it. However there was hardly any chicken, and cut into rectangular batons, it was dry and did not make a nice eating experience. It’s one of those dishes where the noodles come with chicken, rather than the other way around. However, to be fair you are only paying an extra riyal for the chicken compared to the price of the vegetable thukpa.
The Vegetable Thali perfectly reflects the Nepali Dal Bhat dish, which is made up of rice, daal soup, vegetable curry, pickles and yoghurt. The star of our Thali was definitely the bitter gourd pickle that came with the dish, which we had topped up. Thalis have unlimited refills, and are great value for the hungry person looking for a budget meal.
Ultimately one of the best things about this restaurant are the prices, which are low and affordable. Service is good – our waiter Lazarus was very helpful (although he did forget to bring us our soft drinks until the end of the meal but we did not mind).
On the downside parking may be an issue – it does have reserved parking spots in front of the restaurant but it’s limited, and access requires crossing over sand so be careful of your footwear.
We may not wax poetically about the decor and ambience but ask us about the momos and we will happily oblige!