(lighthearted acoustic guitar music) – [Bill] I’m Bill Addison, Eater’s ever-roving National Critic. When we were headed to
Columbus, Ohio’s State Capital, locals in the know kept pointing us to a massive market on
the city’s Northeast side. Saraga International
Grocery supports a few small food counters and
one of them, MO MO Ghar has become a city-wide phenomenon. (lighthearted acoustic guitar music) Chef Owner Phuntso Lama
specializes in momos, Tibetan dumplings. There are only five
seats along the counter at MO MO Ghar, but it’s worth the wait for one of Columbus’s most
uplifting culinary treasures. (lighthearted acoustic guitar music) – Momo is dumplings in Tibetan language. Momo to a Tibetan or a Nepali it’s an anytime food. So you can eat that for breakfast, for lunch, for dinner. I love leftover momos. ‘Cause next day we can
have it for breakfast. (lighthearted music) – [Bill] The go-to this year is jhol momo. Steamed momos stuffed with
ground chicken, onions, cilantro and other spices, and served in a chili-laced broth. (lighthearted music) Or, try the Nepali momo
with the spicy sauce on the side that lets you really taste the freshness of the
chicken stuffed dumplings. (lighthearted music) For a vegetarian option,
there’s the Alu momos. Pan-fried dumplings filled
with a mild potato curry. (lighthearted music) – In addition to them being delicious, they’re really photogenic,
so they’ve become a real Instagram darling,
and I think that’s kind of helped spread the word. Momo got opened just over a year ago. They opened in the summer of 2016. And they’ve really become a sensation. They are hand made. They are made as they
would be made at home with home made wrappers, home made fillings, and a lot of love put into making them. I think one of the reasons
why everything comes across as so genuine and why it’s so good, is Phuntso is just making things the way she would make them at home. They open, they serve the
Nepali food, they serve momos, and they didn’t change it. MO MO Ghar really put momos
on the landscape in Columbus and everybody’s heard of momos
now because of MO MO Ghar. (lighthearted music) – My family had a
restaurant in New York City in the early 1990s. And there we had to do everything. So I got my little bit of
restaurant experience there. My cooking is home cooking. When we cook momo at home, it’s usually a family event. Everyone in the house will get involved. I don’t want to give them
anything that’s not natural. I like to keep it really simple. Simple, flavorful, and
just good for your body. (lighthearted music) People seem to really love my momos and I’m really happy about that. Sometimes it feels unreal. That’s my momo and they’re loving it, and they are so happy. I like my momo. I don’t want to say my momo’s
great, I don’t want to say. But folks of Columbus really
just seem to enjoy it. So I’m really happy about that. (lighthearted music) – [Bill] Brookes’ reimagines the waffle with things like sour dough and zucchini bread as inspiration. It’s both familiar and
startlingly original.