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Pizza kicks Himalayan’s Ass

February 4, 2008

Taste of the Himalayas

1700 Shattuck Ave, Berkeley, CA



For the follow-up to our last ‘dinner & drinks’ event we decided to try something ‘new and different’ again. Or, so we thought. After picking ‘Taste of the Himalayas’ and seeing the extremely polarized reviews on Yelp, I can now understand the food critics’ dilemma. Himalayan food is not very different from Indian food, in fact most of the menu consisted of exactly the same things. The food was all very good and fine and such- Chicken Tandoori, Lamb Vindaloo, steamed rice and complementary Naan…. but not for the price! Gee whiz, the Ethiopian place was a MUCH better deal compared to this place. I’m also tempted to end my Wednesday night outings after that night- between dinner and cocktails at Pasand, I spent over $50.00. ouch. However, in an attempt to not be a total Negative Nancy, I will say that this place was much more gentle to me than the last Indian escapade, and I highly recommend the Momo appetizers (similar to a spring roll, and with amazing dipping sauce). Also, thanks to this place I got to see a little more of upper Shattuck- and by upper, I mean north of the UC Berkeley campus- which seems to consist entirely of cute little shops and an international plethora of cafes and restaurants. Although my overall judgment of Taste of the Himalayas is a definitive ‘Don’t Recommend’ I will certainly be returning for the nearby French, Japanese, and Brazilian hole-in-the-walls.

In Other News, last Saturday night I got to enjoy a “guys night out” at Lanesplitters Pizza, followed by libations at Acme Bar. A few weeks ago, while scouring Yelp for a ‘speak-easy joint with a red door’ that I had heard about somewhere on San Pablo Ave, I came across reviews for Acme Bar, which all sounded amazing. We tried to organize a large group thing for some ‘za (so 90s!) and drinks – basically next door to each other!- but probably due to the torrential downpour and the minor fact that I have no friends, the group consisted of an extremely unbalanced ratio of sausage to fish taco. But, it was probably better that way because people of the female persuasion may not have liked the beer-gulping, cigarette-smoking, trash-talking, pool-shark shenanigans that I have grown so fond of.

I DEFINITELY want to have a repeat of Saturday night- despite the need for transportation there, it was overall a fun night with decent, cheap food and decent, cheap drinks, decent, cheap pool and no bridge toll or taxi fare needed. Acme Bar was much smaller than I had imagined, but the dive-bar, rock’n’roll vibe was definitely there and the infinite selection of the ‘jukebox’ did not disapoint. The bartender, who lent the impression of being an asshole if you weren’t a regular, was surprisingly friendly and told us to help ourselves to some leftover baby-shower food from earlier that evening. Vegetable medley- sweeeeet.

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