MANCHESTER, NH – “The steamed pork dumplings (8/$6.99) are the best you’ll find anywhere,” Brian Carnevale, a new but already repeat customer at Gurung’s Kitchen, tells me as I wait at the counter to place my order. “And I’m very particular, just so you know.”
Things have really been hoppin’ at Bunny’s Superette, 75 Webster St., ever since a new Nepalese take-out restaurant took up residence in Pramod Nyaupane’s renovated store last week.
It cost a pretty penny what with a gleaming new kitchen and hood system, double deep-fryers to the delight of vegetarians (not wishing to co-mingle their lunch and dinner with the carnivore crowd), HVAC, and bathrooms. But, then, Nyaupane knew a good investment when he tasted one: steamed and fried momos (dumplings), thukpa (soup noodles), shapale (fried meat pie), fried rice, and a lot of other heavenly reminders from the homeland. (Nothing costs over $8.99)
Such were the food offerings Sarmila Gurung, a native of Kathmandu like Nyaupane, frequently gifted her former Bunny’s employer and landlord. More than that, she shared her deepest desire: to own a restaurant someday.
“I’ve been cooking since I was 10-years-old,” Gurung tells me, all charm and pluck. “I learned from my mother in Nepal, who learned from her mother, and so on many generations before.”
But the years passed and no restaurant. Gurung started working full-time for the City’s human services department and entered nursing school. Then, three-years-ago at the age of 25, she married her soul mate, 25-year-old Nimesh Bohara, an IT specialist working in Nashua; a native of – you guessed it – Kathmandu.
Together they began to plan the restaurant Gurung had always dreamed of. They consulted with Nyaupane.
“He’s always been like a big brother to me since I came to Manchester,” says Gurung, “I listen to what he has to say.”
She’s a smart cookie. Pun intended.
But Nyupane is more than a successful entrepreneur with several Manchester-based businesses. Beyond his mantra – start smart, start small, and grow from there – Nyupane is a human being whose own passion is seeing the American dream come true for others.
“I always encourage people to do their own thing; to work for themselves,” he says. “If you have the fire like Sarmila and Nimesh, are willing to work hard, for long hours, and can see the big picture, you’ll be successful.”
Well . . . after woofing down an entire serving of steamed chicken momos with sauce so good I wanted to drink it, I knew you didn’t need an MBA to figure out what a good deal this deal is for Bunny’s and Gurung’s Kitchen. With 800 to 2,000 customers hoppin’ into Bunny’s every day – sorry, I couldn’t resist that pun – and a dream menu of fresh, homemade everything, including the dumpling skins, this little restaurant is gonna get mighty busy starting NOW. I better hurry up and text my next order for bison Chow mein ($8.99) with my “favoritist” drink of all time, mango lassi ($1.99).
Note: Gurung’s website – www.gurungskitchen.com – hasn’t launched yet but be on the lookout. In the meantime, check out the menu on Facebook at Gurung’s Kitchen. Hours: 11 a.m. – 8 p.m. daily. To order by phone/text: 603-316-1540. All orders are freshly prepared and take 15 – 20 minutes.
Editor’s note: The headline has been updated to reflect that restaurant is located at Bunny’s Superette on Webster Street
Got foodie news? Carolyn R. Choate can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org