[Manchester, West Didsbury] Great Kathmandu

I’ve walked past this restaurant many times over the years but this was my first visit. It’s always seemed busy in the evenings but, on this lunchtime, there was just little old me. It’s a bit “high street curry house” but with a good range of individual dishes in amongst the “karahi this” and “bhuna that”.

Much of the menu is comprised of fairly standard North Indian dishes, and there’s nothing wrong with that, but you might hope for more than the smattering of distinctive Nepalese dishes (which you will find a few yards down the road at the Gurkha Grill). There was a very generous serving of paneer tikka – nicely charred but in need of a heavier hand with the spicing to avoid it being quite bland. The main course was lamb swadilo – Google later telling me that swadilo translates as “delicious”. Well, they get that one right. There’s long cooked meat – tender but still nicely with a bit of chew. But it was the rest of it that was the real success – a clingy tomato based sauce with lots of chickpeas. A restraint in the spicing meant that, whilst there was a chilli kick it didn’t overpower anything else. I’d happily eat this as a vegetarian meal. Rice was decent enough.

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I’ve just heard that Jhunu Dangol, who founded the restaurant with her husband, died a couple of weeks ago, aged 71.

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Sad to hear. With corona swirling all around us, we forget that there are other non-virus related human stories/drama that continue marching on.

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“Food is a pretty good prism through which to view humanity.”

― Jonathan Gold