Inexplicably, despite many years in Nepal, I’ve somehow never gotten around to eating at Chez Caroline’s. It’s mostly because it’s in an area I don’t go to very often, but still, that’s not a good enough excuse, and after a friend raved to me yet again about how good the food there was, I planned dinner there on a recent stay at Baber Mahal Revisited.


At Chef Shambhu Gopal Pahari’s recommendation, I started with Salad Caroline, which was, there’s no other word for it—amazing! Salad greens topped with potato, eggs, bacon, tomatoes, olives, chicken, all brought together with a delicious dressing, and there was no skimping on ingredients and portion size—honestly, this is a meal on its own, and if you have it as a starter, I suggest sharing it between two people, or you may find, as I did, that after you enjoy it with the basket of delightful fresh bread and butter that accompanies it to your table, you have little room for anything else.


The salad was followed by a tasty salmon burger with crispy French fries, beautifully presented with slices of cheese spilling down the sides. I admit that the idea of a salmon burger is new to me, but it managed to combine a feeling of both freshness and decadence, and is a good spin on the typical burger.

I shouldn’t forget to mention the overall atmosphere of the restaurant itself—of course the lovely historical location adds a great deal, and it has a combination of cozy indoor and fresh outside seating choices. It’s also open; for example, you need to walk through it to reach the Siddhartha Art Gallery and several shops beyond, and rather than seem awkward, it adds to the European street vibe, reminding me of many open air cafes and restaurants that I’ve been to in France and Italy.


   

The chef, along with the waiters and staff, are friendly and attentive, making sure patrons were comfortable and had everything they needed at all times. They recommended that I finish my meal with the mini profiterole dessert, and even though I could barely manage any more, these bite-size goodies were delicious and the perfect end to a meal, all accompanied by a good white wine, of course!

I stayed over at Baber Mahal that night after my meal, at 3 Rooms by Pauline, and so returned to Chez Caroline for breakfast, where I enjoyed one of the most delightful cheese omelettes I’ve had in ages: the light, simple, bright flavors and some excellent coffee sent me on my way with a smile, determined to come back here soon.


My meal touched on only a small fraction of Chez Caroline’s extensive menu, which includes many dishes that aren’t often found anywhere else. There’s also a rotating ‘Menu of the Week’ which is worth checking out as some truly neat specials pop up there on the regular! Both can be found on their website https://www.chezcarolinenepal.com/menu or Instagram page.