Like Kathmandu’s Jhamsikhel, one is truly spoilt for choice at Pokhara’s food district. Every establishment boasts ‘best views’ of Phewa Lake and proudly displays its Lonely Planet rankings, but only a few deliver. Bamboo Kitchen and Bar is one such place.
Staying true to its name, the restaurant is built in a traditional bamboo house style. The huge bamboo chairs and big cushioned couches add to the relaxed ambience and it was tempting to forget about breakfast altogether and doze off, but we had a review to write.
PICS: HARIZ BAHARUDIN
The English breakfast (Rs 390) - a set of toast, scrambled eggs, sausages, and baked beans - sounded irresistible on the menu. On the plate, however, the breakfast fared poorly. We were served two pieces of lukewarm toast, a meagre serving of sausages, a gob of baked beans. The eggs were the only saving grace of the set; they tasted great and didn’t require any extra seasoning.
Our second order of egg sandwich (Rs 370) was a far better bargain. The mayonnaise and herbs filling was the perfect combo and the fresh lettuce and cucumber added a nice crunch to the dish. Although the sandwich was not much to look at, it assuaged our hunger.
No breakfast is complete without pancakes. At Bamboo’s they are listed under the desserts section (don’t ask why), but don’t be dissuaded by the misnomer. The towering stack of triple banana pancakes (Rs 270) was warm, fluffy, and decadent; the best we’ve had so far in Nepal. The pancakes had actual banana slices in them and the generous scoop of vanilla ice cream, which came on the side, complemented the dish perfectly.
A review of Bamboo’s bar would have been incomplete without trying out its cocktails and drinks so I went in again later in the evening. The heady concoction of vodka, gin, rum, and tequila with a splash of cola made the Long Island Iced Tea (Rs 300) the perfect drink to unwind with after a day of cycling to Pame. For the teetotalers, the bar also offers a wide selection of refreshing milkshakes (Rs 130).
As I sat there with a drink in hand and watched the sun set along with dozen other diners, it was easy to see why in the vast sea of eateries, this charming establishment stood out. The atmosphere is relaxed; no pretences and that ethos is reflected on its food as well. Yes, the menu definitely needs some work, but a visit to Bamboo is justified even if just for a nap on one of those huge, comfortable chairs that I am now obsessing over.
How to get there: At the edge of lakeside, turn left and walk past Mike’s restaurant. Bamboo Kitchen and Bar is just a few metres ahead.