Food for your Soul
-   2017-11-01 | nepaltraveller.com
Tucked away in the alleys of Thamel, Villa Everest is a Korean restaurant best known for its spicy and delectable delicacies
As you stroll down the streets of Thamel, you see a line of restaurants beckoning you to indulge in the many cuisines of the world. Live music floats through the air, but you’re looking for some place quiet, somewhere the food speaks for itself; Villa Everest is one restaurant that won’t let you down. An authentic Korean restaurant, hidden in the outskirts of Thamel, Villa Everest first opened its doors to customers as a guest house serving Korean food.
Walking past the entrance, you’ll be greeted with thatched roofs, tall trees and a pebbled pathway that leads you towards the restaurant’s dining area. Bamboos adorn the ceiling and each table is equipped with a stove to grill meat, or to prepare a hot pot. A server is waiting to greet you and as you enter through the glass doors, he rushes over with a charming smile on his face and leads you towards your chosen place to dine.
The moment you seat yourself, a warm glass of mild Korean Tea is placed on your table along with the menu. The tea is light but slightly bitter, perfect to cleanse your palate. To start off, choose something light; the waiters recommended Dak Gae Jang. A variation of yuk gae jang, Dak gae jang is in simple words, leftover spicy chicken soup served with a bowl of sticky rice. The soup is flavoured with Korean red pepper paste, gochujang, and is topped with scallions and a variety of boiled vegetables to add more to the dish.
Next, delve into one of South Korea’s most popular dish- bibimbap, which literally translates to mixed(bibim) rice(bap). With bibimbap, there’s always a wide range of choice: egg, chicken, pork, beef, you get to pick your protein. Served on a hot pot, boiled bean sprouts, carrots, zucchinis, spinach are placed in lumps on a bed of sticky rice and the dish is always topped with a half-done, gooey fried egg. One ingredient that brings together all these elements is the spicy yet sweet gochujang, served separately to add to your personalized Bibimbap.
Save the best for the last; enjoy classic Korean barbecue that comes with the most amount of side dishes. Korean cuisine has long been popular for its version of grilled meat, especially samgyeopsal which translates to pork belly. Raw cuts of pork belly are brought in to be grilled on your table’s personal grill with side dishes like fried tofu, spinach and two different types of kimchi-cabbage and radish. No samgyeopsal is complete without lettuce, chillies and extra seasoning- take a piece of lettuce, place your juicy grilled pork belly, add garlic, chillies, a bit of vinegar and black salt and you’re good to go.
With your stomach filled to satisfaction, your mouth tingling from the spicy hints in the food, you’ll walk out from Villa Everest content, patting your tummy in absolute joy.
Villa Everest Restaurant
Thamel, Kathmandu Nepal