You will not find a dish quite like Royal Nepal Bistro’s fulbari naan in its homeland. Yes, co-owner Sunil Chaudhary says that the breads in parts of southern Nepal are sweet, but this creation exists only in Vienna. Fulbari means “garden of flowers,” explains Chaudhary. “That’s the reason why it’s a bit colorful.”
The tandoor-baked bread lies somewhere between savory side and dessert. The diner can decide how to eat it. The warm flatbread is dressed in a flurry of dried fruits and nuts, along with fresh strawberries, mint, and an invitingly hot chile-honey drizzle.
Royal Nepal Bistro opened at the end of September in the same alleyway space off Maple Avenue formerly occupied by another Nepalese restaurant, Mo:Mo House. And though the five-person partnership that owns the new restaurant already owned Royal Nepal in Alexandria, the new restaurant is a fresh start.
Each member of the team comes from a different region of Nepal, says Chaudhary, who is from the eastern part of the country. “We all bring our own foods; we all try it—everyone will sit down and make the food and try it,” he says. “That’s how we decide different dishes. It’s easier for us to decide with a delegation.”
Spices are ground in-house, which helps to create the big flavors for which the team is known. From momos filled with veggies, chicken, or lamb to the popular goat curry, the effort is evident. Just after losing its beloved Mo:Mo House, Vienna is blessed once again with a Nepalese restaurant that brings mountain-high flavors to the strip-mall suburbs.
131 Maple Ave. West, Ste. A., Vienna
This story originally appeared in our February issue. For more stories like this, subscribe to our monthly magazine.