If you’re in Hyderabad for the final match of this cricket season then don’t leave the city without sampling the legendary biryani. Every foodie comes to Hyderabad with an idea of hitting the best biryani haunts to taste the city’s signature dish. Insulated from the infusion of modern methods of making this famous rice dish, Hyderabad’s oldest joints may be shabby in ambience, but you will not encounter tastier biryani anywhere else. Old Hyderabad or the Charminar area offers at least three well-known haunts.
Below are some of the top joints. Along with the biryani, also try the Irani chai and desserts like khubani ka meetha and a local fried snack, lukhmi.
Established in 1953, Paradise has been dishing out variations of biryani for the last six decades. The higher the floor, the more plush the decor and costlier the biryani. There are three more branches in the city.
Sarojini Devi Road, Secunderabad
Another food lover’s paradise, it is packed at lunchtime, with hasty service and shared seating; however, this only adds to the old Hyderabad experience.
The large lettering on Bawarchi’s cards announces ‘We have no branches’! When you see this, you should be at the RTC Road. Come early at lunchtime and in the evenings before the biryani runs out.
RTC ‘X’ Road
A wave of chatter hits you when you open the door to Café Bahar’s AC section. Again, there’s always a problem finding a seat during lunchtime. Only one more branch exists in the city.
Shadab is one of the oldest restaurants, where brilliant Nizami food is dished out from behind greying counters. Sit upstairs if you want to eat at your own pace. A colourful faluda counter is engrossing to watch if not to eat at.
This is an excerpt from our travel guide Best Escapes South India.