Namgyal Cafe in DharamshalaOf the cities number of Tibetan restaurant, a must try and highly recommended is the Namgyal Cafe of Dharamshala; especially during lunch and for a late afternoon bite. The cafe is situated right outside a monastery. After spending a couple of hours of viewing and absorbing the Tibetan culture it seems to be the ideal place to pacify a hungry stomach. The convenience of being very well located only adds to the overall experience.
The cafe attracts a large number of customers, who have built up an appetite, and are willing to do justice to the diverse menu of the cafe. The ambiance is its USP with the main sitting area being decorated with a lot of currency notes from almost all over the globe. A large number of tourists are seen appreciating the currencies from all around and the ones that spot their own always get excited and chirp playfully. To add to the experience the cafe has a book shelf which has a large number of novels and magazines to choose from. This allows customers to engage their time in reading while they wait for their orders.
The seating next to the windows is a prized one as it overlooks the majestic mountains and offers a beautiful scene while enjoying your meal. The window also allows a view of the street and the hustle bustle of the plethora of people moving on it. Although the windows are comparatively wide and will offer a view to the table a little far away but it is preferable to try and get seated on the table next to it.
While the place is extremely clean and hygienic the staff is also extremely polite and welcoming. The service at times does get slow as the number of customers increase but the staff makes up for it with their attitude. The customers are intimated about the time their order will take to be served and are recommended a book to read while they wait. There is music playing in the background at a low volume just enough so as not to interrupt the conversation of the customers and at the same time keeping the mood from getting dull.
There is a list of the days special which is displayed on the white board. The customers can choose from the specials or can stick to the choices in the menu. The staff there will help you out in deciding your order and recommend dishes according to your specified taste. The place is known for its Thupka, Momos and Veg pizza. An ideal order would be a choice of one each.
To starts with one can order a plate of momos between two people and the steamed dumplings here are sure to stir the taste buds. For those who do not enjoy bland food the momos come with a spicy and flavored red sauce that can be used to taste to get the desired effect. The Thukpa here is very filling as the quantity is more than enough for one person and can comfortably be shared between two people. The Thupka has noodles and momos to add the desired fillers to the otherwise soup like dish. The flavors of pepper and rare Tibetan herbs used to prepare the dish are definite winning points in the overall grading of the dish. The Veg pizza also is specialty here, although it is common and available in almost any part of the country but the preparation of the pizza base to the toppings are truly mouthwatering.
The deserts in the Namgyal cafe are also famous. Infact the cafe is known primarily for it’s deserts and cakes. The pastries available are to savor and relish in every bit. After the lunch it is recommended to try a light desert to carry the experience along. If an individual if there only for coffee than an indulgence in a little more sinful mousse is recommended.
Overall the entire experience of the cafe is fresh and very apt to the whole locality. The prices are very apt (not too expensive and not too cheap).