When you ask people in Kathmandu if they eat pork, you will get different answers. Some will enthusiastically declare their love for this ‘guilty pleasure’ whereas others might point towards cultural restrictions that forbid them from enjoying this delicacy.
But nowhere is pork more cherished than in eastern districts of Nepal, specifically among Rais and Limbus who declare pork to be their staple. And Noyoz, opened and run by people from the eastern part of Nepal who want their trademark to be introduced in Kathmandu, has been the melting pot of variant cuisines. The tiny place is located in Bhatbhateni of Kathmandu and although away from the hubs of famous restaurants, the place does quite well.
The restaurant has made very productive use of the small space. The luminous light of the hanging lamps, the creative write-ups and sketches on the walls gives the decor a very inviting feel. For instance, one of the sketches on the wall says, ‘Calories: Tiny creatures that live in your closet and make your clothes a bit tighter’. It gives one more reason to gorge yourself on delicious food and not feel guilty about it later. And if you think there are only write-ups that discourage you, your eyes might swerve towards small framed quotes that add so much charm to the restaurant.
However, the food is the main thing that sets it apart from other places. The menu is simple yet filled with exotic delicacies. To start off, the most popular dish of the place is smoked pork and quite literally it has a very rich smoky texture on it. The smell immediately reminds you of pork barbeque that you might have enjoyed with your relatives in Dharan (only if you had any!). It has a very homely feeling to it. Three long hours are spent to prepare the pork which contributes to its rich smoky taste.
Eastern food is incomplete without sargemba, a type of blood sausage that has been prepared in a hygienic manner and carefully balanced with spices. Steamed for two to three hours, stuffed with ingredients such as yangben (in Limbu language), an edible wild moss and grilled until it is crisp. The result is a delicious dish that tastes and looks like a normal sausage, yet is more flavourful and charred. It is enjoyable with a hint of chilli sauce to balance the savoury and spicy taste. People usually do not want to take the risk with this type of dish, but if it is prepared in a safe way and tastes wonderful like in here, it is worth taking the risk. For a foodie, it is not something that you would regret and even suggest to someone who is experimental in their taste.
A perfect Dharan local food experience is incomplete without enjoying pork leg curry either with rice or roti according to one’s choice. The curry is pleasant to the tongue, not too spicy yet zesty enough to satisfy. Again, the leg curry is really soft in texture as a part of the process of its preparation involves still fry until it is red and slow cooking in a pressure cooker along with its spices which involves a generous use of garlic and chilli. The homeliness of this dish reminds you of warm family dinners in the inviting ambiance of home while the cheerful laughter of loved ones is audible from the next room.
But if you are not up to having a hefty meal than perhaps enjoying east’s favourite street food aloo nimki with mint lemonade might make up for a good time there. The menu has many enticing dishes that you can experiment with, whatever may be your choice you will neither regret your time or your money here. It is perfect for a budget spender as most of the dishes do not exceed more than Rs 300.
If you are looking for something new to try out in Kathmandu or if you love eating pork than Noyoz should definitely be on your list. Filled with exotic tastes and dishes, at the most affordable prices this tiny restaurant will not let you down.