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Dining on a Dime: Indian-Nepali Kitchen


Indian-Nepali Kitchen's cauliflower 65 and dal soup - SOPHIE X. POLLAK ©️ SEVEN DAYS
  • Sophie X. Pollak ©️ Seven Days
  • Indian-Nepali Kitchen's cauliflower 65 and dal soup
It was time to re-up on hand sanitizer, so I hit the road — not for the drugstore, but the distillery.

I’ve bought my share of off-label hand sanitizer during the pandemic — sticky, gunky, gelatinous stuff that feels yucky, smells icky and falls short of the doctor-recommended 60 percent alcohol content.

Then I got turned on to Barr Hill hand sanitizer from Caledonia Spirits and it was a pandemic pleasure (relatively): Barr Hill’s product looks and feels like you’re squirting water into your hands, or maybe washing with gin. Its alcohol content is a WHO-approved 80 percent.

Over the months, I bought the Barr Hill stuff  when I spotted it at local shops such as Jake’s ONE Market in Burlington and Philo Ridge Farm in Charlotte. But those occasions were infrequent.

Recently, I drove to the source on Gin Lane in Montpelier and purchased a case: 12 four-once bottles for $3.12 apiece. The distillery is open for curbside business with a roped-off maze that leads from an order station to a pickup place. It helps to be stone-cold sober to navigate the route.

Barr Hill is selling its standard fare — spirits and cocktails — in addition to the public-health hygiene product. To celebrate my purchase of a case of something fine, I bought a Negroni to-go. Made with Tom Cat gin, the amber beauty comes with two orange slices floating in the jar. For $24, it’s made to serve two — or perhaps one-and-a-half — and comes with a bag of mixed nuts.
Barr Hill Negroni, hand sanitizer and mixed nuts - SOPHIE X. POLLAK ©️ SEVEN DAYS
  • Sophie X. Pollak ©️ Seven Days
  • Barr Hill Negroni, hand sanitizer and mixed nuts
After the distillery shopping spree, I took a walk in the capital city, hiking up hill to view the dome from above and behind. Then I made my way to Indian-Nepali Kitchen. The restaurant at 100 Main Street opened last summer in the big-windowed corner building previously occupied by Down Home Kitchen.
We had called ahead to place our order, and it was ready when I arrived. The meal traveled well from Montpelier to Burlington, where I reheated it before we ate.

I opted for two appetizers — a bowl of dal soup ($4.99) made with yellow lentils and cooked with spices including ginger, garlic, turmeric and curry leaves, and an order of cauliflower 65 ($7.50). The combined price put me slightly over the $12 Dining on a Dime limit, but I have a legit excuse for how this occurred. (I won't bore you with it.)

The serving of crispy cauliflower was  generous, especially for an appetizer. The dish complemented my Negroni in tone and temp. My daughter likes her food spicy and her chicken vindaloo, off-limits to me at $12.99, hit her flavor mark.

Still to use: 11 1/2 bottles of hand sanitizer.

Dining on a Dime is a series featuring well-made, filling bites (something substantial enough to qualify as a small meal or better) for $12 or less. Know of a tasty dish we should feature? Drop us a line: food@sevendaysvt.com.