Senior UA researcher Tank Ojha opened Lemongrass about a year ago, just south of Che’s Lounge on Fourth Ave. The super-nutritious food on Ojha’s menu is cooked to order using the freshest organic ingredients.

It’s an abundance meant to nourish the body and soul.

Tall with tousled gray hair, Ojha is gracious, intellectual and no-nonsense. He says his food is not for everybody, but it is for every-body. The offerings are scientifically constructed and decidedly delicious.

As a young Nepalese scientist conducting research in the remote Himalayas, Ojha found the food available to him lacking in nutrition, often leaving him without energy and with a stomachache. He decided to start preparing his own meals. “Year after year I developed cooking skills and researched spices and how to mix them in the right proportions,” he explains. “I wanted to cook food that was perfectly balanced. The human body needs protein, fiber, and carbohydrate, but one must know how to blend them properly for optimum energy and health.” The name of the restaurant comes from one of his favorite seasonings, which he uses a lot. “I love lemongrass, it makes everything more delicious,” he notes.

Just south of 7th Street on Fourth Avenue, customers enter through a windowed door marked “In,” and are greeted by the chefproprietor himself, his open kitchen in the background. A glance to the left finds a showcase fridge filled with beverage offerings. A glance to the right reveals vessels of fresh water to help oneself to and a huge Lemongrass menu board with selections denoted by numbers for simplicity.

High ceilings and walls of snowy white create an airy vibe. Wide stripes of kelly green wainscot and frame provide contrast.

Intricate red and black ink pressed paper posters of dragons and Buddha fill out the 

ornamentation. Modern saddle stools at a wall-mounted bar top, and two- and four tops, clothed in tan, fill the two small rooms.

A kelly green door opens to a tiny fenced outdoor patio cloistered with gauzy drapes and prayer flags.

Fabulous fresh organic proteins, crunchily cooked vegetables and basmati or brown rice are the primary ingredients that can be had in a bowl, stir-fried with rice noodles or as a combination platter with naan (leavened flatbread) and rice pudding.

Proteins are pristine: Grass-fed Australian Lamb is prepared to order, cooked tender in a pressure cooker to vanquish excess fat.

Chicken breast is marinated and cooked fork tender. Shrimp and salmon choices are sautéed with a choice of house-made sauces, each made fresh daily — pink-hued tomato, coconut milk or fresh spinach. Vegetarian/ vegan options include tofu, lentil patties or paneer cheese, a familiar item in Indian cooking. The whole milk cheese is smoky and firm, but less rich than most, affording a guilt-free cheese experience.

The fresh vegetables, abundant in each dish, are a combination Ojha chose for their prebiotic properties (beneficial to the gut) 

and to positively affect the fueling system of the body. Broccoli, Brussels sprouts, green beans, carrots, red and green peppers, onions and zucchini all work together. The organic harvest, grown by local purveyors, is vibrant with crunch and flavor. If you opt for the long grain Basmati rice, you’ll find it’s rich in nutty flavor, and cooked with garlic, warm aromatic ginger, and smoky cumin turmeric. Himalayan pink salt, with an impressive nutritional profile, is rich in minerals and adds to the spice effect.

If naan bread is more your thing, you’ll discover it’s chewy and satisfying, made rich with olive oil and toasty from the cast-iron pan.

Talk to the diners here and you’ll quickly learn about their favorites. This was patron Cisco’s second visit. “Usually, I tend to find food that goes out of its way to be ‘healthier’ than its competition lacks flavor and/or substance. But that was not the case with the lamb curry platter from Lemongrass. The curry sauce, which I chose to be spicy, was the perfect amount of seasoning and heat, and the mix of organic veggies — including some impressive Brussels sprouts — were the best complement one could ask for the chunks of lean lamb that were impressively tender, given that he cooks it to order.”

The sole offering for closing sweet is vegan rice pudding — toothsome rice grains swimming in a pungent “cream” of coconut milk, cashews, almonds and raw sugar. “Digesting food is tough work for the human body. So the body craves sweets after a big meal for getting a quick spike of energy to support the digestive process,” says Ojha. “Healthy vegan rice pudding is a better dessert to support the digestive process.” For those who prefer to drink something sweet, the smoothies at Lemongrass feature fresh banana, mango, raw sugar and coconut milk.

Although Ojha loves his time in the kitchen, he has bigger fish to fry. He’s solved the riddle of preparing delicious meals in perfect scientific terms, so he will find his way back to the equally satisfying arena of the Himalayas … studying the impact of the geological process on time, topography and climate. Please don’t forget to bring back the pink salt, Tank!