Would we go back:
2512 Hennepin Ave S
• Mamacha Dumplings – Chicken $5 (shared)
• Roti $1.50 (shared)
• Coconut Fish with Green Peppers and Tomatoes $15
Namaste has been in our basket for some time and how I wish we had picked it a bit earlier. We arrived a little after 5 and it was already busy, which is an excellent sign.
We started with the Mamacha Dumplings which were very well done. The filling was a nice spicy mix which was a nice change of pace from the Twin Cities' dumpling landscape which tends toward the bland. My entree was an excellent dish, the fish, vegetables and spices all marrying wonderfully together. If we lived a bit closer, it would be a dish I would often get.
If you are in the Uptown area and feeling hungry for Indian/Nepalese food or even just good food, check Namaste out.
• Tofu, Mushrooms and Green Peas $12
I usually cringe when I see a readers’ favorite come out of the basket. This one, Namaste Café, exceeded expectations. First of all, the place was busy at 5 p.m. on a Saturday night, which is unusual. We went with our son, as usual for many places these days, thinking we would be safe. While they were accommodating, I felt out of place all throughout the meal. Then when we left, there were two geeks at a front table with laptops out either studying or gaming. Really. Then I didn’t feel so bad about dampening the vibe of the restaurant. I was really surprised to see the two women at the table next to us order a bottle of champagne. Really. At 5 p.m.
The Mamacha dumplings were very tasty. We ordered chicken filling, but you can also choose lamb, bison, or tofu. They were served with a so-so tomato-based dipping sauce. Nevertheless the dumplings themselves were the ‘steaming delights’ that Namaste’s menu describes. The tofu, mushrooms, and green peas dish was hot and balanced. You have the option of ordering it to your spiciness 1 through 5. I ordered 3, which was a general mistake because our son has not taken on to spicy foods yet. I would have ordered and been able to handle 4, but 3 was comfortable and about right. As it turned out, our son likes peas, but doesn't care for the tofu or mushrooms, so it didn’t really matter. He liked the standard, but right-priced, roti, and all was good.
If you go, remember that it is the heart of Uptown. Traffic and parking are worse than normal. But, have patience and you will be rewarded with a fantastic meal at Namaste.
February 6, 2010