We recently attended the wonderful Bollywood Music Project at Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium and were starving post event. On our way up we had seen The Old Delhi Food Festival being held at India Islamic Cultural Centre. This being quite close to JLN, we headed for the food festival post BMP.
The road in front of India Islamic was chockablock with cars parked and there were many waiting on the side for parking. Thankfully wisdom prevailed and we parked inside the service lane on the opposite side of Lodhi Road. India Islamic was swarming with people as there is no business like food business. There was a nice fountain at the gate and this seemed to be a hit with selfie addicts.
The food festival was split at two levels of the lawn. There were stalls on the sides and the steps at the lower level doubled up as makeshift benches and tables where diners sat trying to balance various plates of food on their two hands. There were some tables at the lower level as well. The food fare included Mughlai food, parathas and dessert of old Delhi variety (read shahi tukra and halwa). It was only about 7 in the evening and many of the stalls were already sold out. Perhaps the biggest disappointment was Changezi chicken which got sold out in front of a long queue of waiting customers.
We had mutton nihari that was a tad spicy and the meat piece was chewy alongwith rumali roti and sheermal that was actually very tasty. But the best was the complimentary drink – Gur ka Sharbat. Mildly sweet with an earthy flavour and no artificial smell, this was one unique refreshing drink. Plus, guess what, there was no entry charges for this event. Who says best things in life don’t come free!
We had recently reviewed Grub Fest and that was a more wholesome approach with live music and dance floor as well as famous bands performing in the evening. We have also been invited to Delhi Food Truck Festival later this week where we look forward to tasting some cool stuff.
But what we liked best about The Old Delhi Food Festival was the fact that they focus on just food and there was no effort make anything look cool. The only other element was the soft modern numbers that were being played by the DJ. This not only was an interesting contrast to the old Dilli fare but also added a romantic air to the late spring event. The Old Delhi Food Festival establishes yet again – somethings needn’t change ever.