What makes this casual Nepalese restaurant one of my favourite places to eat in Hobart? Pull up a chair and I’ll explain.
It’s perhaps not the ambiance. Downstairs is somewhat cafeteria in style and I can imagine off-putting to some as a first impression, but never judge a book and all that. Music is pleasant and subdued, it’s a place to feel comfortable. Hidden away upstairs is a more atmospheric dining hall that’d be perfect both for larger groups and more intimate dining. It has also hosted concerts and is available for private functions.
The drinks list is small, ever changing, cheap, and effective. A mango mohi is rich and smooth and they’ve the usual array of soft drinks as well. The alcohol is far more interesting though. Currently featured are beers from Sherpa Brewery, advertised as Nepals first craft brewers and including the excellent Himalayan Red in 500ml cans. The wine list is minimal but includes finds such as a bottle of Nocton Vineyard Pinot for $40 and a Coal River Chardonnay at $27. They’ve also local beers, a choice of two spirits by the nip, and traditional teas. But it’s not the drinks list that excites me so much about this place.
The service I love. The waiter is friendly, knowledgeable, and humble. He seems to genuinely care about your enjoyment of the dishes and welcomes you back on repeat visits. While some language barriers exist he is genuinely one of the best hosts you’ll find. Bringing complimentary poppadoms on arrival just sweetens the deal.
But it’s the food that makes Mirmire one of the most exciting dining venues in Hobart.
The Non-Veg Platter entree is huge and could happily be shared by two. The Pakoda is light and crispy while the Chicken Shefale features coarsely ground meat and mild spices encased in a crunchy pastry. Bhatmas Sandheko is delicious, deep fried soy beans finished with herbs and spice. Chicken Choila is last on the plate and my pick of the platter, a chilled meat dish packed with garlic, aromatic and flavorful.
When ordering one of the curries from the menu you’re asked how hot you like it, my Chicken Curry had a nice bite of heat without being overpowering. It’s in the Nepalese style with a light sauce that is rich in flavour and a generous amount of chicken. Rice comes with an extra $3 attached to the bill and is spiked with whole aromatic spices.
The steamed dumplings in special sauce is one of the best things ever, but they have so much here that shares that title. Eleven dumplings filled with lightly curried chicken mince swimming in special sauce. The combination of the components work really well together building up a complexity of flavour that you’ll want to return for again and again, and did I mention how well priced everything is to encourage you to do so?
A dish of goat innards is rich and made spicy hot as requested. The meat is a celebration of textures from different parts of the animal ranging chewy to tender. Served with crunchy broken rice it’s not a dish I’d recommend to the non adventurous but the pay off is definitely there for those that chase tastes different to the norm.
For a quick and cheap bite at lunch they have you covered: Choice of curry from the bain marie served with rice and naan for $10. The Chicken Tikka Masala I tried was mildly spiced but tasty, the naan a little dry from sitting out too long, but overall a nourishing and substantial cheap feed. I’d suggest ordering off the menu though as better things come to those that wait.
They have three different ‘sets’ to choose from that really highlight the regions cooking and showcase the skills of both the kitchen team and host who gives a run down of the different components and the traditional way to tackle each dish. The dhido in the centre of the platter shown is a traditional savoury pudding made from your chice of grain, I asked and went for the waiters preference which was buckwheat. You pour the melted clarified butter over the top and then it is dipped into the different curries and condiments around the edges. Each mouthful is different and a delight, the mustard pickle being the highlight for me with the tender bone-in goat curry running a close second. I cannot stress enough how good this meal and way of eating is.
Vegetarians are very well catered for here with a lot of choices and they’ll happily adjust the sets as well. If you’ve a group of four or more then they provide a banquet option featuring some highlights of the menu.
Each time I’ve eaten here, and there’s been a number of times, I’ve walked away with the same sensation of taste buds tingling with delight and a happy warmth enveloping. It’s exciting, authentic, and honest food that deserves the same plaudits given to our best.