Best food in Hyderabad- this question let me to the Deccan power capital and this is my experience. God knows why, most of us are under the notion that Hyderabadis eat Biryani thrice a day, even for breakfast. It might happen that I’ve met the wrong persons earlier, but I was conveyed the same notion. So this time during my solo trip, I tried to visit the well-known food joints in Hyderabad and I was astonished of the sheer variety.
Please don’t get me wrong, but Hyderabadis have got a good appetite. I am saying this with a positive note. Every restaurant serves a huge portion of food and guests happily finish them I’m sure they are tasty but am also sure of the capacity. And the gentleman who was taking me around Hyderabad apart from Sabyasachi da, Taher Syed, literally laughed the entire 4 days of my moderate eating … I am sure, I can not find out all the best food in Hyderabad in the short trip. But, here is my list.
For the best breakfast joints, I’ve tried to talk about them in 3 genres. The first one is the grand roti- malai paya breakfast. The second one is the Dosa bandi and their jaw-dropping selection of Idli and Dosas and the third one is the Khichri Keema. Nayaab Hotel, Gobind Dosa Bandi and Shah Ghouse comes in this list of the Best food in Hyderabad and for their 3 different item sets. But for the vegetarian food lovers, a visit to Hyderabad is incomplete without a morning trip to chutneys for its Babai Idli.
Please check it in details in the following post.
Best Biryani and Mandi in Hyderabad
For some reason, we have a strange idea that all Hyderabadis eat only biryani. But in reality, that is definitely not the case. There is Biryani, and then there is Mandi. And a discussion on the best food in Hyderabad, a discussion on Mandi can’t be missed. But We all know about Biryani- but what is Mandi? Mandi is a rice and meat dish originating in Yemen. as opposed to Biryani, it’s very very subtle in taste and the meat can be ordered in two variants- either the juicy or the fried version.
Mandi uses a typical cooking technique which makes it different from the rest. Dry wood is used in tandoor to provide heat in Tandoor. The meat is then boiled with spices and this stock is used to cook the fine Basmati rice inside the tandoor. The meat is then hung inside the tandoor without touching the rice and fat melt from the heat mixed with it made it so tasty. This process is followed for 8 hours or overnight. Honestly, nobody is sure if such an elaborate technique is followed nowadays, but what the heck … I was taken to Mandi@36 for the experience.
If I talk on Meridian, Shadab and Shah Ghouse for the Best Biryani, Mandi@36 definitely gives a strong competition. Please check the comparison and my experience in the detailed blog post below.
Best Andhra Mess in Hyderabad
I know I am repeating myself, but Hyderabad food is so beyond Biryani. Yes, people there love biryani, but the regular Telugu meal is also there and it’s definitely something to be experienced. Personally, wherever I go, at least one meal should be in a local pice hotel and that helps me immensely to understand the local tastebuds. And it was no different in Hyderabad. The only difference is, it’s called as a mess there in Hyderabad.
So, if there is a good local singer in your locality, there is always is a master. And in Hyderabadi mess culture, the award arguably goes to Sri Kakatiya Deluxe Mess, Ameerpet. Locals call it as one of the best Andhra Mess in Hyderabad and rightly so. Sabyasachi da made it a point that I go there and himself took me for lunch. and I must say, for anyone searching for the Best food in Hyderabad, this is a must-visit.
Best Telugu food in Hyderabad
But apart from the everyday Andhra mess, Telugu food is much diverse and rich in nature. So, Ulavacharu is arguably among the best Telugu restaurants in Hyderabad and Secunderabad and is known to present a taste of the typical cuisine to the public. Technically, Ulavacharu is the name of a very very popular gram dish (kind of Rajma) and the restaurant is named after that. It’s a fine dining place, which boasts of hosting the who’s who of the Telugu celebrity circle.
Telugu cuisine can be broadly divided into 3 regions- Coastal Andhra, Rayalaseema, Telangana cuisine. As the name suggests, Coastal Andhra reflects the coastal food along the Bay of Bengal coastline. The dishes are rice-based and use a lot of fish. Ulavacharu is a famous dish from this region only. The southern regional cuisine can be named as the Rayalaseema cuisine- bordering Karnataka. The food is super spicy and the use of chilly is very very prominent here. What we understand as the hot Telugu cuisine, is from this region. In this Rayalaseema cuisine, Thokku is pretty popular- so like the Bharta of Bangladesh.
The Deccan plateau from Telangana state can be called as the typical Telangana cuisine. Apart from rice, roti (made from Millet and Ragi) is extensively used here and mutton is consumed heavily. A use of Tamarind, red chilly and asafetida is heavily used. And Ulavacharu showcases cuisine from all these places… Please check this Wikipedia link for more details.
Please check the detailed discussion on the food experience at Ulavacharu here
Finally the best Royal Nizami food in Hyderabad
Apart from biryani, if Hyderabad is known for any one dish, that probably is Haleem. Yes, we have ordered the Haleem from Pista house Hyderabad via DTDC courier service, but I’m in Hyderabad and how can I miss the Haleem? And if we talk about Haleem, there lies the story of a cultural tie between the Nizams if Hyderabad and Yemen. I’ll try to share those stories and the royal Nizami food in Hyderabad. Zaiqa-E-Hyderabad, this one is for you.
Hyderabad was a food trip for me and Sabyasachi da helped me immensely for the same- both for the planning and taking me around. But when I was asking about the royal food of Hyderabad, he suggested just one place and that is Zaiqa-E-Hyderabad run by the renowned chef Pradeep Khosla. And once the meal was over, I could understand the reason.
Zaiqa-E-Hyderabad one of those typical posh suave restaurants. And the best part is, it’s flooded with natural sunlight, making it a photographer’s delight. A table was reserved adjacent to the window and Sabyasachi da was chatting with the chef when I reached. Now the concept for Zaiqa-E-Hyderabad needs to be discussed here.
The food here is from the royal kitchens of Nizams. And though it’s inspired by the Moghul food, is different. Then the Moghuls got themselves settled in Hyderabad, they couldn’t get their original spices, neither they could adjust their palate with the spicy Telugu food. Moghuls are not really known to be a lover for spicy food. So, what they did was, they substituted the spices with aroma- introduced the use of green chilly and paved the way for Hyderabadi food.
Please go through the below post for a detailed discussion of the food at Zaiqa-E-Hyderabad
My experience for the best food in Hyderabad
I was there at Hyderabad for this food trip for just 4 days 5 nights. But it’s almost impossible to understand the city foodscape in such a short period. I am sure, I’ve missed multiple gems here, which needs to be mentioned. Do share them in the comments section, so that I can visit them in the future. But these are probably the basic places if someone looks for the Best food in Hyderabad and that might start the quest.
Bon apetit !!!
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