Restaurant review: Lumbini – Nepalese cuisine

11 02 2014

Naan bread at Lumbini - reijosfood.com

There are 28 Nepalese restaurants in Helsinki. Yes, 28 which is amazing amount! (source: Fonecta). Means that Nepalese cuisine is the second most popular ethnic kitchen after Chinese.

Lumbini is one of these restaurants serving traditional food in their dining room but also with take away opportunity. Nepalese food is affordable as well as few wines they have in their list.

Dinner at Lumbini starts always with Nepalese crackers. Crispy, well seasoned thin crackers increase the feeling of hunger appropriately.

Crackers at Lumbini - reijosfood.com

As portions are quite big we ordered for starter only one Deep Fried Chicken to be shared. Crispy pieces of chicken breast, not swings, were appetizing and with mint sauce the end result was perfect.

Fried chicken at Lumbini - reijosfood.com

Main courses always include Naan bread baked in Tandor oven, Basmati rice, Mint sauce, Raita and Green salad as side dishes. Portions at Lumbini are generous because the actual main courses are in separate bowls. Most restaurants serve them in the same metal plate as all side dishes.

Naan bread is really delicious, better than Indian version.

Food at Lumbini - reijosfood.com

Ordered for main courses our favourites Butter Chicken Chicken cooked in coconut-cream butter & tomato sauce and Spinach Chicken Chicken with spinach sauce.

Tender pieces of chicken in well-seasoned sauces are palatable. Thick sauces actually make the dishes what they are. If you do not like this type of sauces, you do not like Nepalese cuisine.

butter chicken at Lumbini - reijosfood.comChicken Saag at Lumbini - reijosfood.com

Wines are not so typical drinks for Nepalese food but this one pairs extremely well. Basic, affordable Gato Negro from Cabernet Sauvignon grapes makes the dinner complete.

Gato Negro - reijosfood.com

Nepalese or Indian desserts are not our favourites, therefore we were satisfied for starters and main courses.

Actually it does not make sense to compare Continental, Scandinavian or Finnish cuisines with ethnic ones because they are totally different. However, you can always judge food, you like it or not. We like Nepalese food, therefore score is high. Service is always polite, thoughtful and humble. Sometimes you are not so happy about too familiarity and effusive freshness which new fine dining bistros present.

REVIEW: FOOD 4-/5 – SERVICE 3+/5 – OVERALL GRADE 3,5/5

http://www.ravintolalumbini.com/


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11 responses

18 07 2015
namastehelsinki

Thank you so much for reviewing about Nepalese cuisine. As I am myself Nepali, I can say that there is huge difference between Nepalese and Indian cuisine. People are in confusion as the basic ingredients such as cumins, coriander, ginger, garlic, chilli etc. are similar. The important thing is the way of using those ingredients is totally different in both cuisines which make them unique to each others. Indian dishes are more oily, spicy compared to Nepalese. As far as I know, Finns love less spicy and less oily foods which could be the reason that Nepalese cuisines are very much popular in Finland.

19 07 2015
reijosfood

Thanks for readint the post! I like a lot Nepalese cuisine.

12 02 2014
meandhetravel

Currently we are in India and now you have given us more incentive for the cuisine of Nepal!

12 02 2014
reijosfood

Please let me know how Nepalese cuisine differs from Indian in India if you have chance to visit Nepalese restaurarant. And thanks for reading my post!

18 07 2015
namastehelsinki

Thank you so much for reviewing about Nepalese cuisine. As I am myself Nepali, I can say that there is huge difference between Nepalese and Indian cuisine. People are in confusion as the basic ingredients such as cumins, coriander, ginger, garlic, chilli etc. are similar. The important thing is the way of using those ingredients is totally different in both cuisines which make them unique to each others. Indian dishes are more oily, spicy compared to Nepalese. As far as I know, Finns love less spicy and less oily foods which could be the reason that Nepalese cuisines are very much popular in Finland.

11 02 2014
Miia

Yummy!! But I have a dilemma. Eating Nepalese food in Helsinki always puzzles me, because to me it feels and tastes Indian! All those pappadum and naan, they are Indian. And so is butter chicken etc. Well, I guess Northern Indian and Nepalese food are very similar, but still, I am curious about this… What do you think?

11 02 2014
reijosfood

Nepalese cuisine at Lumbini is not like Indian. Spices are not so “soft” as in Indian kitchen and Butter Chicken is good example of the differences. When I first ate Nepalese I did not like it so much as today. Of course in 28 restaurants there must be Indian-Nepalese cross-kitchens. Funny thing is that genuine Indian restaurants have almost dissappeared, which is a pity.

11 02 2014
Miia

Thanks for the comment!

In your opinion, what is the best Nepalese restaurant in Helsinki? Or top three? I would like to try a good one next time.

I like Samrat near Vespa and the last time I asked the chef was Indian. Have you been?

11 02 2014
reijosfood

Himalaya, the oldest one, might still be worth to try. Have not been there for few years.
Used to visit Indian restaurants but not since was disappointed in Namaskaar when there used to be one in Bulevardi.

11 02 2014
Miia

Oh I agree! The last time I was in Namaskaar (also in Bulevardi) it was rather bad. Very bland. We complained and they explained that they need to limit the spices bc otherwise they lose lunch-hour customers….

Try Samrat!

12 02 2014
reijosfood

Must try. But usually visit this type of restaurants only few times per year.

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