During the Holy month of Ramadaan, each sunset beholds the Hyderabadis thronging towards the Old City lanes. Gastronomes, who dream of perfect kebabs and mutton haleem, clutter near Charminar area, the de facto centre of Hyderabadi cuisine in the city. We headed over to Charminar,not only to hog on the delicacies,as well as to witness the frenzy of Ramzan. Sweating profusely in summer heat, we walked through the narrow lanes and braved the jostling crowd to experience the Ramzan Food walk.
Nimrah Café and Bakery : Journey started with a warm cup of Irani tea. Chai and Osmania biscuits are inseparable companions to kick start any gastronomic journey. You can opt for a plate of assorted biscuits to have a taste of everything. I personally love the chand biscuits and osmania biscuits.
Milan Juice Centre : Opposite to Nimrah Cafe, tucked in between shops is Milan Juice centre which serves different juices but the showstopper is the Mulberry Rabri. The explosion of sweet flavours is unbeatable. The rabri malai is sweetened milk after its reduced for a long time. Apart from that, Mango Malai is also a must try.
Pista House : Though challenged by some of the big names, Pista house has hands-down one of the best Haleem in Hyderabad. Slow cooked for over 10 hours, this dish has minced chicken or mutton and wheat, served with fried onion and lemon.
Matwale Doodh Ghar : After spicy Haleem from Pista House, a hop on to next-door neighbor Lassi ghar for Rose-flavored ice cold lassi is a must. The Lassi is one of the most sought after dessert, specially after devouring the spicy wholesome haleem.
Sonu kebabs : Snaking through the night crowd, we painstakingly rode over to Al Farooz Sonu Kebab centre to have a taste of the charcoal grilled kebabs. An array of mouth-watering kebabs greeted us – specially Pathar ka gosht and Seekh kebab, Malai mutton, Semiya Chicken, Mutton gravy and laccha paratha. Maragh is also available, a mutton stew blended with coconut powder, cashew nut paste and boiled milk.
Few tips for better experience:
Most of the places are restricted for vehicles. Crowd increases at night, so please plan accordingly. Please park your car or bike at designated place only. One of the easy car parking spots we found was near Mirchowk Gulzar sweets. Or else, you can park car near Pista house.
Please carry water. Though you can buy water bottles or enjoy a glass of refreshing sugarcane juice, it is better to carry your own bottle of water and refill at filters placed outside of the hotels.
The threshold of Charminar is dotted with jewelry shops. Most of the items are priced at Rs 100 only. There are lot of steal deals on bangles and earrings. No one will go back home empty-handed for sure! Also along with Mecca Masjid, there are numerous shops with clothes on display. Please make sure to carry cash, though most places accept Digital payments.
Ever visited any of these while meadering through the Ramzan crowd near Charminar?