You know how it is, you have to visit Old Delhi and all those mosques on Christmas. Just kidding.
I boast of a lot many things. I call myself a writer because I have a blog. Techie because I can install windows (which, by the way, I am going to stop saying after I recently damaged somebody’s laptop), a programmer because I can print fibonacci series on the screen. You get the point.
Likewise, I call myself a foodie because I have taken great pains to remember cheap eating joints. Also, I am fat. And Old Delhi is the Mecca for us foodies, at least for the cash-strapped among us. So I, with my brothers, embarked on this trail to lose our Food-walk-in-chandni-chowk virginity.
Thanks to this wonderful resource, we had our map laid out. Of course we did not go to all these places, time and money problem, and some I had been to earlier, so we trimmed and altered it to our liking and got down at Chawri Bazar Metro Station (Ajmeri Gate exit). The difference between this post and that Wonderful resource I linked to is, I am going to give you a more recent AND subjective view of it.
So our first stop to be was Ashok Chaat Bhandaar. Exit and go right, you will come upon a clearing and intersection of roads. Take the one diagonally opposite to you (Lohe Wali gali). You will find the shop just at the mouth of the street. Since it is a food discovery walk, you are free to try anything. Just make sure you order their Kalmi chaat and/or Urad daal chaat. Everything else is average.
Walk further into the street and keep an eye on your left for a small shop that goes by the name Heera Lal Kulle Chaat. They serve something you don’t get a lot in Delhi. What they do is, they hollow out cut pieces of fruits, and fill it with pomegranate, chick peas, spices and stuff. It tastes great! Their Aloo chaat is worth a mention too.
This was Chawri Bazar, next we headed to Chandni Chowk. You can choose to take a rickshaw, or walk, it isn’t very far. On your way you can catch a glimpse of the Jama Masjid. (You can also take a break from this trail and head to Al Jawahar for awesome non-vegetarian delicacies. It all depends on what you want to do, my fan..err..friend!).
Jalebi Walah served the best Jalebis I have had in a long time. It comes just before Sheeshganj Gurudwara, on the left, assuming your back is facing (lulz) the Red Fort. Albeit having a not-so-warm staff, the Jalebis were a delight to bite into. Don’t forget to ask (and pay) for the Rabri!
Next up was the Jung Bahadur Kachori Wala. It is towards the end of the famous Paranthe Wali Gali. Once inside the Gali, walk till you come upon a T-Point, take a right and walk towards the other end. Its a small shop on the left. Nothing too special, just ordinary Kachori with subzi.
At this point, I would also like to add a few words for Paranthe Wali Gali. Over hyped.
Now come back to the main road, and walk further away from Sheeshganj, on your right you will see Natraj Dahi Bhalle Wala. Good. Don’t stop, keep on walking.
Further on, you will come to a clearing, with Town Hall on your right. Ask for Ved Prakash Nimbu Wala, or just Nimbu Wala. He sets his shop just as the clearing gives way back to the normal-sized Chandni Chowk main road. Now, the Soda Lemon he offers is nothing special. It is what you get from every soda shop. Then why am i even mentioning it? The owner is friendly, which is a treat in itself! And after all the food hopping you have done till this point in time, your stomach probably needs a little Soda you know 😀
After the drinks, walk towards the Fathepuri Masjid (which you have been doing all this while anyways). On your right you will see the board for Shiv Misthan Bhandaar. Look carefully because the signboard might not be lit. Enter. Their Bedmi poori and Nagori halwa are a must try. In fact, the Nagori Halwa is something to die for, supposedly. But you can’t die for it in the evening, that is because a lot of people die for it everyday in the morning itself, and after so much bileshed, there isn’t anything left. (I asked them, in all my innocence, for the Nagori Halwa. To which the owner replied “Sir aap to roz ke customer ho, ab aap bhi ese sawal poochoge!” I have a common face maybe). Anyways, the Bedmi poori was how it is supposed to be, just the right taste and feel, but the subzi could have been a little spicier. Other thing, highly priced (according to the neighborhood I mean). And oh, sweet staff!
After Shiv, we walked more in the same direction, to Fatehpuri Masjid. There are a lot of sweet shops here. Choose one if you want to. Chaina Ram Sweet shop is highly recommended. We skipped this part because it’s a free country, that’s why.
Take the right turn. You will be greeted by a lot of Hattis here.
First one up is Gol Hatti. Normally tasty food. Their Chhole Chawal Palak is a must try, mostly because they serve it in a Kulhad (earthen pot). Now Kulhad meant less quantity for the same price. Haah! Business acumen.
A little way ahead is Giani’s Di Hatti. Giani’s is an Ice cream parlor chain, so the ice creams are pretty standard. This branch, though, is more famous for its special Rabri Faluda. I say buy it.
And if you are still not full 😀 please take a seat at Kakke Di Hatti, which is just besides Giani’s. Affordable food, and delicious. Go even if you are full and end up with Giani’s.
The total amount we spent was a little short of 800 INR for the three of us. Street food is generally cheaper, but the famous shops tend to charge higher, like 50 bucks for four pieces of kulle, or 70 for the Bedmi Poori. But they aren’t here for charity, it’s a trade after all.
That’s it. Our trail ended. Take a seat somewhere, nurse your tired legs, and reflect on the day. We did that on our way back home because Mom 😀
A day well spent, bonding with my brothers but I know you are not interested.