What it is
Previously known by regulars as the Flavour of Himalaya, the Sagarmatha Curry Palace restaurant boasts an extensive menu of classic Indian and Nepalese dishes that are sure to satisfy every taste bud.
Once you get past an exposed pipe at the bottom of the staircase leading to the underground restaurant, hungry locals and curious wanderers are welcomed by vast open space contained by orange and purple walls, festive lights, Indian music and rustic wooden dining tables.
Service can be confusing (it’s not clear whether or not you seat yourself, or if you wait for a server) and the place is usually packed by 7 p.m., so expect a wait if you’re heading out for a late dinner. However, the warm atmosphere and taste and quality of the food makes up for the restaurant’s downfalls.
You can expect a wide range of soups, curries, South Asian dumplings, clay oven baked naan breads and biryani, just to name a few. Their chicken, lamb and seafood dishes are prepared in tikkas, kebabs and tandoori styles.
How to get there from campus
Take the 5 bus from campus heading towards downtown for about 15 minutes until you reach Main at Hughson.
Walk on Hughson Street South towards King Street East for about four minutes, then turn right onto King William Street. The restaurant’s entrance with be on your left, between The Mule and Hambrgr. Make your way down the stairs to the basement and the restaurant will be on your right.
All appetizers are under $5, a basket of naan tandoori is under $3 and the main dishes range between $9 and $12. A small selection of platters and combos can get a little pricey with a range of $14 to $18.
You can expect a wide range of soups, curries, South Asian dumplings, clay oven baked naan breads and biryani, just to name a few.
What to get
The boneless tandoori chicken served with lentil dal and rice is a must try item. As a tandoori chicken enthusiast, I was blown away by the freshness and quality of the meat.
The dal was equal amounts spicy, savoury and sweet, which is great for anyone with limited spice tolerance. Not a fan of sauces? Try the biryani, which can be ordered either vegetarian, with chicken or with lamb. This is one is definitely spicy.
The vegetable pakoras, which are deep fried fritters of vegetables and papri chat, a dish of crunchy wafers topped with chickpeas, yogurt and tamarind chutney make great appetizers or a quick snack.
No matter what you get, always make room for the naan.
Why it’s great
Sagarmatha Curry Palace is officially my favourite place to get Indian cuisine in Hamilton.
The affordability of the food does not take away from the portions you’re getting. Even if you come with a large appetite, I guarantee you’ll have trouble finishing. Money and portions aside, it’s straight up delicious.
The menu also has a variety of vegetarian, gluten-free, dairy-free and vegan items. Overall, I love the flavour and aroma that the foods attain from being patiently cooked in a clay oven. I recommend dining in for the full experience, there’s something about hearing food sizzle past you as its carried off by the hustling waiters.
If you’re short on time, you can also get take-out or get delivery.