An ordinary signboard that reads ‘A La Carte’ hanging from one of the verandas above the front entrance of Mojo Park – a live music bar and lounge that I frequent – was something I reluctantly noticed a while ago from seeing people going up and down the side alley. I finally decided to steal a lunch break and go see for myself what the place and food was like.
Upon climbing the narrow stairway up the side of the building, I expect to walk into a small congested area, but I’m taken by complete surprise when I enter a very large open space that could very loosely fit, at least 30-40 people and then some. I notice the décor, which seems to me a work in progress which I later confirm, is indeed so. I am greeted by a very plesant lady who I later find out, is the wife of one of the two partners.
A La Carte is a partnership between two friends, Ugyen Choezang and Dechen Pelden, both very young, and both of whom earlier worked as Sous Chefs at the Aman Resort in Bhutan.
Their menu is varied, but limited to 10 items – a Rice Noodle Soup (with minced beef, spinach, celery, fried garlic and corriander), Thai Style Fried Rice (with chicken, eggs, cabbage and spinach), another popular thai street food called the Pad Thai (soaked dried rice noodles, Prawns, Bean Sprouts, Spring Onions, Coriander, Peanuts & Shallots), a Panini (with Ham, Grilled Chilies, Mozzarella & Potato Chips), Hot Dog (Mustard. Buffalo Sauce, Gouda & Fries), Burgers (Chicken/ Beef) served with a side of fries that were certainly better than the Burger itself, a fair attempt at a Spaghetti Bolognese and the AFC (signature fried chicken served with coleslaw), very popular with the regulars. A chocolate or Ice Cream Crepe is also the only sweet treat on the menu.
But, the winner for me, was the bhutanese twist on the popular spicy thai salad called the Som Tam, Young Papaya Salad – a combination of the five main flavours of thai local cuisine: sour, salty, hot, pungent fish sauce, and the sweetness of palm sugar. It was bang on! An the extra chili, as requested, only made it better
Prices for all items on the menu range from Nu. 100 – 195.