A Place for Fine Dining: Baryo Fiesta

Features Issue 66 Jul, 2010
Text by Arjun Rimal

If you enjoy exotic food, open spaces, art, and a lively atmo- sphere, then Baryo Fiesta is the place for you. One of the new eateries in town, it is still evolving as the property boasts many outlets catering to various needs of their clients. Some of the new developments are yoga and aerobics classes.

Baryo Fiesta is the collective effort of friends and partners Kareena Rai, Soren Hansen and Lupita Ortiz. “We all wanted to have a place where people could come and enjoy the wonderful cuisines and delicacies from around the world and that too without punching a hole in their pockets,” says Lupita. Indeed, the food is intercontinental and stands up to any in the valley. In simple words, it’s truly five star fare at reasonable prices.

“Baryo Fiesta is first and foremost a quality restaurant with a homely atmosphere to give a relaxed feel to fine dining,” says Lupita. “The name is a word play of two Mexican words; ‘baryo’ meaning neighborhood and ‘fiesta’ meaning party. Combine them and you get Baryo Fiesta, ‘place for fine dining’. Baryo Fiesta combines the warmth of the neighborhood and serves it with the cuisines prepared by our master chef.” The restaurant is set in the relaxed, almost weekend atmosphere, in Naxal, a stone’s throw away from the Police Headquarters.

Soren, the man behind the taste bud tingling fare and wonderfully tantalizing delicacies, has had years of experience in the kitchen and is also a qualified 5 star chef. Originally hailing from Denmark, he has been living in Nepal for the last couple of years. He spent time cooking mostly for the expatriate community before deciding to open up his own place. “And when you are involved in the culinary business for that many years,” he confides, “You are bound to see new recipes in your dream.” The menu is always changing at Baryo Fiesta. “I design a menu that responds to the season. In winter we have hot and sizzling dishes like Thai delicacies while in the summer we have something cool that will help the guests to seek a respite from the heat,” he explains.

Probably the strong point of Baryo Fiesta is not only the wholesome food, but also the manner in which Soren presents them to his guests. When it comes to presentation, Soren is an artist. His dishes are as much a visual delight as it is lip smacking. It’s easy to figure out why it’s called culinary arts. The open kitchen at Baryo Fiesta makes sure that you get to see your order being prepared. The aroma drifts and even before it has arrived at your table, you already have a sniff of what it’s going to taste like.

For thirsty travelers and people on the look out for that perfect watering hole to put their feet up and relax, Baryo Fiesta is a dream come true. The open-air bar enjoys center stage in the garden and stays cool under the shades of huge trees. This unusual bar blends in with the spacious garden and harmonizes perfectly with the overall décor of the place. It is stacked almost full to the brim, with vividly colored liquids that promise to quench your thirst. Its color scheme, which is bright going by any standards, suits well to the contents it houses inside. Throw away any fancy name of a drink or cocktail and sit back— your drink is in safe hands.

Then there’s the gallery. Just incase the surrounding greenery tickles your artistic sense, the in-house gallery will surely charm you. The walls of the restaurant showcase paintings by various artists. “We intend to use it as the platform for young and upcoming artists,” says Lupita. The gallery has played host to, among others, artists like Chirag Bangdel, who recently exhibited his collection entitled ‘In Search of Bliss’. Other fun activities are also ensured at Baryo Fiesta. There are both beginner and advanced level yoga classes if you are so inclined. For the fans who cannot get enough of American Idol and a host of other sing along shows, there’s the Karaoke Bar. “The idea of the Karaoke started around Christmas time, but surprisingly, it’s popular even on other seasons as well,” informs Lupita.

And then there’s the ‘Social Thursday’, another of their much loved concepts. It’s a mini event in itself. Basically the idea is the same; good food in equally comfy and relaxed atmosphere, but the menu gives it a twist. The fixed menu for Social Thursday sees regional specialties across the globe come alive. On our visit, the menu was scrumptious Mexican. “This time we have Mexican specialties, next month we’ll bring in the flavors of sunny Spain,” says Soren.  And not surprisingly, their clientele is as cosmopolitan as it can get. “Our guests are as international as the food we serve,” says Lupita, adding, “The local community here has also supported us wholeheartedly and we are seeing a healthy mix of local regulars.”  Baryo Fiesta opened its doors from November 2006 and has been serving gastronomical delights ever since.

A dish like the ‘Rosemary flavored pork chops served with ratatouille and Potato ‘du jour’ might sound like a tongue twister, but it sure tastes delightful. Other hot favorites include exotic dishes like the ‘Viva Mexico’, steak topped with banana, Jalapeno pickles, Guacamole and Pico de Gallo and served with Tortilla or rice. The menu comes alive with flavors from around the world, carefully chosen and prepared by Soren. But go easy; spare some appetite for the desserts as well. Soren also excels in the preparation of desserts. It’s easy to figure out why it’s called culinary arts. Lip smacking desserts like the Dark chocolate cake and Ginger truffles look just too good to eat.

In such a short span of time, Baryo Fiesta has already managed to tingle the taste buds of food connoisseurs looking for authentic intercontinental cuisine. One might even go as far as to declare it the best place for it. But don’t take my word for it, go and enjoy it yourself. Bon Appetite!

For details: 4414395, baryofiesta@yahoo.com, www.baryofiesta.com