Feb 25, 2016
Pune is the sort of place where you can get the best of both worlds. It’s a city where people love to catch up over filter coffee to discuss art and films on FC Road, and wine and dine at a more modern setting in Koregaon Park and Kalyaninagar.
Much like Mumbai, the city takes pride in owning century-old eateries mainly serving south Indian, Parsi and Maharashtrian food from across the state. They have stood the test of time, and continue to pull crowds owing to the consistent quality of food and old world charm.
If you happen to be in Pune for work or leisure, you have to eat out at some of these restaurants offering food from different parts of the county. Whether your stay is short or long, refer to these places perfect for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Trust us, even 24 hours is good.
If a south Indian breakfast is your thing, head to Vaishali on FC Road for their idli-dosas and vada sambhar. The wait could be long, so Wadeshwar next door is also a good option. Don’t miss the filter kapi here. A good Puneri Irani café experience is available down the road at Café Goodluck. Standing tall since 1935, it serves staples like bun maska and chai and cheese omelettes.
If you are around Camp, head to Vohuman Café for pure nostalgia sake. The new location is right across the road near Ruby Hall clinic. Don’t forget to chat up with Hormaz Irani at the counter, who apparently moved in from Mumbai in the late 70s and fell in love with the city enough to open an Irani café.
You cannot leave Pune without visiting their dining halls and canteens (in and around Deccan and old city), serving vegetarian thalis and homely Maharashtrian food since decades. Shreyas on Apte Road and Krishna Dining Hall on Law College Road are great options if you are hungry, and fancy traditional food at a no-frill setting. Come mango season, you have to try the amrakhand with puri!
Fish Curry and Rice is comparatively new, but serves some good coastal Maharashtrian food in a modest ambience. It has quite a few outlets, so choose your location accordingly and go for their fish thali. If you love mutton, Purepur Kolhapur at Sadashiv Peth and Kothrud is a trusted name.
If work demands you to be around Camp, the 80-year-old George Restaurant on East Street is a must for their biryanis, chello kebabs and other Irani specialities. For seafood from coastal Maharashtra and Mangalorean cuisine, Coconut Grove near Pune railway station is a trusted option. The prawn gassi and appams are a must-try as is the varied selection of coconuty fish preparations.
Prem’s at Koregaon Park is strategically located to cater to the city’s hip crowd, and foreign visitors who come to the Osho Centre across the road. Although the restaurant serves both Indian as well as continental food, it’s their alfresco seating that makes it a much preferred option for a leisurely breakfast or even a Sunday brunch.
After a filling breakfast and lunch, you will most likely opt out of any dinner plans. But, there are a few places, which are worth checking out. If you are catching up with friends, 1000 Oaks at Camp offers a relaxed vibe with its old world interiors and garden seating catering to a north Indian menu. The music has been great since the early 90s, and the food consistent especially the dal makhani!
For biryani lovers, there’s Blue Nile opposite Poona Club, which also serves a mix of Mughlai and Irani food. The chello kebabs here are good, and the mutton biryani one of the best in the city. The added attraction is the old building it is housed in.
And if you are kicked by Parsi food, Zamu’s Place on Dhole Patil Road is where you should head to. Established in 1988 by Daraius Cursetji, it is extremely popular for its sizzlers, a dish that apparently originated in the city. Try the mutton cutlets, dhansak and sizzlers for sure.