A restaurant like no other

Food Issue 125 Apr, 2012
Text by Niraj Karki

60 years of delicious baras (and more) and counting!

Were it any other place, Honacha would be closed – or rather wouldn’t have any customers. While that sounds terribly negative, think about it – how many restaurants do you keep going back to time and again where firstly, you can’t find seats (and if you find them, they aren’t really comfortable) and secondly, very often you find out that the food which is why you go there has run out?

Honacha is an oddity, but a delicious one at that. No seats and no food (oh the irony) are small excuses and quite ineffective at keeping those who love the food away. If you don’t know, (oh how many good meals you’ve missed) behind the Krishna Mandir in Patan is this little gem of a place, old, dark, almost dingy, serving the same delicious Newari food for over 60 years.

I should mention there is another one just around the corner opposite the temple of Bhimsenthan. Run by brothers, these two absolutely local joints define Patan as much as anything else - going to Honacha being quite synonymous with going to Patan. To clarify, the food doesn’t run out everyday – it is only an indication of the fact that this place gets busy everyday! For those wondering, Honacha is the name of place, not very far away from the square.

The menu is really simple – everything made from buffalo meat - chwela, kachila, bhuttan, sukuti, and almost every organ from the animal and potatoes for veggies. It is almost pointless going here if you are a vegetarian but the spicy potatoes in gravy are really good – especially with a bara.

And then there are the ‘baras’ or ‘wohs’. The goodness of lentil cooked as pancakes on a ‘tawa’ girdle that never gets a moment’s rest during the day. Plain, egg or mixed (with minced buff meat) – it’s these that you keep coming back for. Try them with a bit of meat gravy and chances are you’ll be back, seat or no seat.