One of the great joys of visiting a seaside tourist destination is the real effort that goes into provide a wide variety of restaurants. Galveston is Houston's neighbor, and Houston is the most diverse city in the United States. Therefore, it is fitting that Rabindra Sharma and his partners opened Himalayan Taste Sports Bar & Restaurant on 59th and Broadway in order to bring us the culinary treats enjoyed by our big city cousins.
"We are providing more than food specific to Nepal and Tibet," stated Sharma. "My partners and I realized that there are a large number of locals from the entire region including India and Pakistan. So we included those traditions in our menu."
My Culinary Adventure
Although I am a local, I was wearing my Anthony Bordain attitude when I dropped in to Himalayan Taste on a busy Saturday afternoon. I was clueless and therefore simply went to the buffet and choose what looked and smelled good. Luckily, everything looked and smelled heavenly. The items chosen included a Tandoori Chicken, Chicken Masala, and Goat Curry. Tandoori Chicken might be familiar to many diners due to the cooking method that involves slow cooking in a distinctive Tandoor clay or metal cylindrical pot. The chicken had a moist interior and was coated with rich garlicky spices. The Chicken Masala was fork tender and bathed in a creamy, luxurious curry sauce. The Goat Curry was also quite tender and was saturated with a traditional brown curry sauce.
The richness of these traditional dishes are enhanced when wrapped in generous pieces of warm, tasty Naan, a form of flatbread baked in clay ovens. A polite server also offers a tasty refill every few minutes, keeping it warm for every tasty bite of food. Even the steamed Basmati Rice was so well prepared that it could be eaten without any sauce. I washed all of this spicy goodness down with a traditional cup of Masala Hot Tea and frankly needed a nap.
Health and weight considerations have really increased the number of vegetarians and vegans on the Gulf Coast. Those wishing to hold fast to their path, but who are limited when eating out, will be thrilled at the selections featured at Himalayan Taste. Indian cuisine and their tradition of turning vegetarian dishes into spicy masterpieces are well represented here. On my visit, two luscious spinach dishes joined the party. Spinach Pakora, features small portions of spinach that have been covered in gram flour, spices, and fried into tasty tidbits. Palak Paneer is soft leaf spinach, in a creamy mixture of homemade fried cheese and spices. Additional vegetarian dishes included ingredients like lentils, garbanzo beans, onions, cauliflower, okra and other fresh vegetables blended with rich regional herbs and spices.
The sauces at this new eatery are numerous and exquisite. As a newbie, I didn't know if the heat would be too intense. I sampled Tamrind Sauce, Spicy Onions, Green Chatni, and a touch of Hot Sauce. I was pleasantly surprised, when the sauces combined mouth-warming heat with powerful savory flavors that provided perfect balance. And last, but not least the desserts here are also traditional. They include items like Gulab Jamoon, a golden fried dumpling made with milk, soaked in sweet saffron syrup.
The menu at Himalayan Taste is too extensive to reveal here. However, regardless of type of entrée, you can find something that pleases. For example, Shrimp and, Lamb and Goat can also be ordered as Curry or Masala dishes. For those who really want the heat, most dishes can get the spice upgrade versions in Vindaloo dishes. If you're looking for authentic dishes from one country like Nepal, ask for their "Chicken Mo:Mo" regular or fried. This dish featured ground chicken marinated with minced onion, ginger and Nepali spices wrapped in a thin flour wrap accompanied with special Nepali chutney.
In short, I can only report, that I did not stop to interview the owner until I had eaten almost everything on the plate. Every time, Mr. Sharma asked if I had tried, this or that-I pointed to the empty spot where the dish had resided before I ate it.
This new eatery is brand new. In fact, the Saturday I arrived, it had only been open since Tuesday. Despite that, the food was prepared expertly and the service was quick and servers were very polite. Moreover, the place was packed before I left. The well-appointed eatery is bright and cheerful, with a host of extras including a full bar and a pool area. The pool table and Foosball tables are also joined by a festive "Beer Pong" game – without the beer.
"We are featuring Bennie's Bloody Mary's mixed by one of the islands 30 year veteran bartenders," said Sharma. "We are already booked for parties and special events as well,".
There is a buffet daily in addition to menu items at a wonderful family friendly price point of $10.99 and $11.99. In short, you don't have to hop a plane anymore to have a fantastic international experience. Just drive down Broadway and come to the Himalayan Taste Sports Bar & Restaurant.
Himalayan Taste Sports Bar & Restaurant
5902 Broadway (In strip center, north side of street)
Galveston, Texas 77551
Note: Ask about how you can support the earthquake disaster victims in Nepal. Himalayan Taste is providing continuous donations from their profits to help the victims recover.