“If This Biryani Doesn’t Make You Happy, Nothing Will”
The Best Chaat In The Universe
Deep in old Delhi, inside the Kinari Bazaar, there is a man named Padam who sits at the entrance of the ice factory lane, and he’s selling the best chaat in the entire universe. He’s an elderly gentleman, and he knows exactly how special he is. He makes the best chaat – nobody else can give you chaat like he can – nobody. Chaat is made of little bits and bobs, maybe 10 or 12 different things that you kind of string together. It’s a very fiddley process and far too time-consuming to make every ingredient yourself at home – but he does. It’s almost mind-numbing to think of all the work he does to make his chaat; he does not outsource anything. He makes everything in his home – and then he brings it all into this grotty, over-crowded market where he sells it. It’s a piece of heaven, it’s very, very special. It’s not very difficult to find him – you just need to get into Kinari Bazaar and then ask for the ice-factory lane. He’s there from about 3pm to 8pm.
Where You’ll Find Me On The Weekend
My go-to restaurant is Town Hall, inside the hip Kahn market. The atmosphere is very casual and fun; it’s crowded, and you drink beer or wine and talk over loud music. There are three head chefs here, and they each have their own specific style. You can eat amazing sushi and Japanese dishes with ingredients so wonderful that you just sort of fall in love with them. They have delicious Thai dishes, like fresh and vibrant pomelo salad – and they have pizza sometimes, but I just go for the Japanese food because it’s very, very good.
A ‘Must-Try’ Dish In An Iconic Restaurant
In the centre of the city, right by Connaught Place is Kwality Restaurant. It’s about 90 or 100 years old now, and was recently refurbished. It has a really nice and quaint sort of vibe. It’s famous for its delicious and buttery, soft chana bhatura; puffy and flaky white-fried bread served with a chickpea curry.
An Exciting Addition To Delhi’s Dining Scene
Tres is a Spanish restaurant and bar that you could say is pushing the boundaries here in New Delhi. I come here quite a lot; the food is very good, very exciting, and for Delhi, very cutting edge. I’ve been about six times now, and every time I visit, I have to order the chicken liver ice-cream garnished with crunchy fried onions. I’m absolutely crazy about it.
A Jazz Bar Where The Menu Steals The Spotlight
A friend of mine is the chef at The Piano Man, a jazz club and restaurant. She travels quite relentlessly, so she’s not always there, but the menu is inspired from her travels; especially throughout places like South-East Asia. It’s a very interesting place to eat, and a fun place to be.
Where To Find Great Coffee
There’s a coffee movement in India, and Quick Brown Fox, an independently owned specialty coffee roaster, is a great spot to experience it. It gets specialty coffee grown in the southern states and serve great food to go with it. It’s one of the best places in Delhi to get a really great cup of coffee.
Selected Works: The Flavour of Spice (2017)
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