Street Food is an integral part of our lives. Some of the best innovations, tastiest dishes have come out of numerous little stalls dotted all over India. So it wasn’t a surprise that Taj Vivanta decided to feature a spread featuring the best of street food. It has done an amazing job with Khao Galli. Also for people who are sticklers for hygiene, the Khao Galli food festival makes for a good spread to experience it all at one place.
We had a chance to drop in on a quite Saturday night for the Khao Galli food festival at their specialty restaurant Viva. The first thing you notice is the humongous Buffet Spread. The options and varieties on offer would immediately put a smile across your face, not knowing where to start off. Needless to say Chef Arjun Yadav was there to help us navigate through the buffet.
With an ambiance beautifully set for the occasion, a tarot card reader seated in front for the guests to while away in between food for some light predictions and soothing music in the background, we started off with the Pakodis, Bondas and the other fried items on menu. Now there is a point to note that Pyaaz ke Pakode is very hard to find in Hyderabad. Many of the stalls around the city either have Patta Gobi pakodas, Mirchi Bajji or the likes. But for a rainy season there is no beating pyaaz ke pakode with a glass of cutting chai. Now that is bliss and the Egg Bonda was another we liked too.
The Tala Hui Machi featured on the menu but did need quite a few improvements in terms of flavor. But it was the Pav and Chaat section which was next. From Bhel Puri, Ragada Patties, Aloo Papadi Chat to many more, this was one lengthy section. The Pani puris were perfect and I loved the Keema Pav too. The Dosa section had options between Masala, Onion and Mysore Malasa and many more. I opted for the Mysore Masala Dosa and wasn’t disappointed.
The Paratha Gali had choices ranging from Aloo, Gobi to the quintessential Kerala style cyclone parotas. The Cyclone Parotas with a traditional spicy, coarsely ground masala chicken gravy is a must have. The cyclone parotas are stuffed with either chicken or mutton keema according to choice. The Charminar section of the buffet had been dedicated to kebabs. The Mutton Boti was nice among them and the person behind the counter grills it live according to your choice.
Having almost indulged in the street food section so much, there is little space left for the main course. The main course is also synced along the lines of the street food. As Chef Arjun was telling us, the Chowmein and Manchurian is made like the bandi-style to keep in line with the theme. But having just a spoon of most of them, my eyes wandered to the far end of the buffet which had the Haleem. The Haleem had been beautifully made, smooth in texture, flavorful and subtly spiced. Topped with fried onions, coriander and a dash of lime it was perfect.
The dessert section of the buffet also has a lot of stuff. The sweet-toothed people aren’t gonna be left disappointed with Malpua, Pheni, Khaja, Chikkis and many more. But my favorite among all of them was the live-jalebi couuter. Jalebis are always my weakness but the one at Khao Galli took it up by a notch. Flavors of jalebi included Orange, Kesar, Milk Chocolate, Strawberry and Dark Chocolate. I mean how much more innovation can there be with the Dark Chocolate Jalebi being killer delicious. But do NOT (Yes I’m putting it in CAPS) ever miss the Rose and Coffee ice cream at the end. There is no beating the taste of it.
What I loved about the Khao Galli festival is that with many buffets you tend to stuff in, but not many have outstanding dishes. But the Khao Galli at Taj Vivanta maintained a consistency all through the night with less scope of disappointment.
The Khao Galli food festival is on every Saturday at Taj Vivanta, Begumpet
Price Of Total Buffet – 1400 AI Price Of Buffet without the Khao Galli Street Food Fest – 1300 AI Price Of Midnight Buffet Featuring the Khao Galli Street Food Fest – 750AI