Food of India 2
If you're not eating at the guesthouse or hotel you're staying at, then I can promise you that Varanasi hosts hundreds of restaurants and food stalls, scattered around the ghats and behind the ghats.
Food stalls and food vendors sell fresh fruit, hot chai tea and if you dare...lassis fresh from the pot (Rs 5).
The owner of Maruti Guesthouse (where we stayed) recommended Kerala Cafe that serves terrific South Indian food, but we never got there :-(
Kerala Cafe is located at Bhelupura crossing and serves among other things; masala dosas, chola bhatura and ice cream.
We ate at several restaurants, but I'm only writing about two of them since they're the ones I remember the name of. Here they are!
Phulwari is a nice restaurant tucked away from the noise on Main Road and Main Ghat. A very popular place and all the times we ate there, it was full! Believe it or not, it was also clean!
You're basically sitting in a garden in large rattan furniture, or you can choose to sit on their comfortable couches. This is where I tried my first Puri Bhaji (Rs 60) - a traditional Varanasi breakfast with some extra Papadam (Rs 15).
The Puri Bhaji contained curry with potatoes, tomatoes and green beans. It was a little spicy, but very good.
I really enjoyed this breakfast and would come back just for the Puri Bhaji.
Another dish I tried was the veg pakora (Rs 40). I've sampled pakoras from different restaurants in India, but this one was surprisingly disappointing. OK, but dry.
My former class mates from development studies ate western food most of the time, and it was good enough (toast, burgers and pizzas).
We ate there three times and we didn't have to wait that long for the food to be served, maybe 30 minutes.
Me and another class mate spent a dinner evening at Phulwari. I had the spaghetti and frankly, next time I will have an Indian dinner just so they can make it right.
I had a drink called 'Nana' and it was so good! Nana is a lemon drink with lots of fresh mint.
Indian breakfast: Rs 20-60
Western breakfast: Rs 35-90
Salads: Rs 60-85
Where: Phulwari is located near Main Ghat
Vaatika is another popular restaurant in Varanasi. They have really good Indian food, but there was definitely one thing that really annoyed me, and that was all the flies swarming the food!!!
We also heard that the pizzas here are delicious. Several people around us ate pizza, and they seemed to enjoy it.
The view is another highlight at Vaatika. You're basically overlooking the Ganga River when you're eating, and there's a fantastic view (just ignore the flies).
As usual, I tried the Dal Fry with rice and nan (a yellow lentil dish). Another day I tried an Aloo dish (potato) with nan. Very delicious! :-)
Where: Assi Ghat
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