The newly opened Sasa: Twa radiates a rich indigenous Newari sensibility. The ambience of the restaurant envelopes you in the richness of its traditional design; Sasa: Twa has been thoughtfully created to reflect cultural aspects in not just design but on the menu too. To our delight, we found the staff to be friendly, attentive and quick.
The Newa Restaurant offers typical Newari food and the place is spacious and can accommodate up to a thousand people for banquet events. This excellent-value restaurant in Kirtipur is fast becoming everyone’s favourite Newari eat out.
The food at Sasa (literally, the ‘house of the in-laws’) is a picture of authenticity. The set meals are a good choice, or combine a wo (lentil) or chatamari (rice) savoury pancake with the excellent pancha kwa (stew with bamboo shoots, potato and dried mushrooms) for a light lunch. The patrons are mostly local Newars, so you know the food is good.
Sasa:’s cooks do an incredible job with the more common Newari delights too.
We tried Jilajan Kaula after going through the extensive menu. This Newari dish is put together with single portions of choila, bhutan, tisyo and nhepu with sagan – a ritual offering of fried egg, fried fish, bara and a salicha of aila. Customarily, the first dish is offered to the son-in-law when they visit their in-laws, and this combination symbolises utmost respect and hospitality, reserved only for Newar sons-in-law – indeed a perfect feast.
To keep things earthy and authentic, everything is served on traditional serving dishes – food on brass plates and drinks in a tiny clay bowl called salicha. According to the custom, you are supposed to take a small bite out of the egg, fish and bara – in that order- then take a sip of aila. You are then required to repeat the whole process three times, before you move onto other foods.
Also on offer are aila and thwon – two of the most notorious Newari home-brews. But Sasa: takes home-brewing to a whole new level by offering kar-thwon, a flavoured and aged red-rice beer with a mellow taste, and a rather nasty kick.
Sasa:’s cooks do an incredible job with the more common Newari delights too. Mixed Wo or Bara, Choyala and Alu, Sukuti or Sukula Wala are must-eats.
Once here, you might as well wander around town and soak in the ambience of one of Kathmandu’s oldest settlements.