Dorabjee & Sons info
Dorabjee & Sons, Camp Area timings
Cost and prices at Dorabjee & Sons, Pune India
User Reviews for Dorabjee & Sons
When in Pune if you crave for Parsi food,everyone you ask will suggest you this place.
Located in the heart of camp road,Parsi colony this place is like more than 130yrs old.I personally love the camp road for its structure and locality.
Ambience is very simple and old hence don't expect too much on the looks front.
We went here on a Sunday afternoon for lunch and to our surprise it wasn't that crowded.
What we ordered for:
1.Salli boti chicken & Pav
Everything that we ordered tasted really good and had the authentic taste.The pricing was reasonable and service was quick.
My take on the place:
Our overall experience was good and the food definitely made our Sunday afternoon.
In short it is a nice and friendly restaurant in camp area for some authentic Parsi food.Recommended!!!
Camp is close to my heart because I began to believe I could live in Pune only when I got to know that wonderful area – it is the sort of place I can endlessly, aimlessly amble about even on solitary walks, soaking in a locale that is so richly distinctive because of the communities that abound there – the Parsis, the Bohri Muslims, the Christians, the Sindhis et al. And, in Camp, the Dorabjee outlets are two of my favourite haunts! The first Dorabjee is of course the supermarket-cum-cafe on the main Moledina Road and the other, the widely famous but humble homely restaurant called Dorabjee & Sons (the ‘sons’ part covering the descendants down the century and into the next one and beyond) on the more interior Dastur Meher Road. The latter has cult status as only those joints can have which have a solid sense of rootedness in the milieu from which they spring. Their USP is not something drafted by some cunning public-scamming marketing & publicity machinery but is simply because they were made that way!!!
To reach the joint, you need to meander into the residential underside of Camp. The easiest directions are go straight down the lane adjoining Dorabjee’s the supermarket, past the Garden Wada Pav centre on your right, till you find yourself in a sweet gully that almost looks like it is in a time-warp (I mean that in the most flattering way possible) and you will locate Dorabjee & Sons on your left. Alternatively, facing general directions of Aurora Towers, take the first left from Oasis and you will approach it from the opposite end. It has a typical tiled roof.
Needless to say, eating at Dorabjee is a thoroughly charming old-world experience – and why should it not be considering it was established, drop your jaw now, in 1878!!! Many may claim it doesn’t quite have the “ambience”, the way we tend to refer to ambience these days – in my books, it has, in fact, great original ambience precisely because it does not have nor does it require any fancy furniture, swishy interiors, nattily dressed staff, expensive cutlery, pretentious highfalutin menu and all the rest of the desperate trappings that any upmarket joint just won’t survive without today!
Dorabjee has great atmosphere, the kind that gets built and maintained organically because of the sort of people who run it, who work here and those who are regular patrons here. It is a place where old loyalists will saunter in, get chatted up by the wonderfully warm cook-cum-owner (not because it is some wise strategic PR move to make but because he is like this – warm, affable, gregarious, affectionate, curious, wickedly funny pre/during/post his working hours) then get served very homestyle Parsi staples (although Zomato, in all its wisdom, labels the cuisine “North Indian, Mughlai” – la haul wilakuwat I say with dramatic eye roll) without too much unnecessary fuss or frills by wonderful alert staff who serve quickly, efficiently, guiding you effortlessly when you order and throughout the meal – they are just an eyebrow flick away in comprehending what you need next and get that for you with nothing more than vague sign language exchanged.
The other afternoon, on a midweek national holiday, we enjoyed the following favourites of ours:
1. Chicken dum biryani (Rs 200)
2. Mutton cutlet (Rs 50)
3. Mutton salli gosh (sic) @ Rs 180
4. Custard (Rs 50)
5. Pav (Rs 5 each, to dunk & eat with the salli gosht gravy!)
Now don’t start expecting some variant of dum biryani you have had in other joints or in other states, don’t debate with self how it compares to Lucknawi or Hyderabadi or what have you – just eat Dorabjee’s chicken dum biryani for what it is – great helping of flavoured fragrant rice with succulent chicken, cooked in a mild pious manner that you almost think it has come from some Parsi grandmother’s kitchen and not a commercial one! It is spiced well but is not heeehaww-give-me-water-right-now-to-douse-the-flames spicy! It also has potato chunks which I can relate to because Bengalis also often cook it that way.
The Salli mutton gosht with the traditional salli (or potato matchsticks/straws) garnish has tender mutton chunks cooked in a brown cumin & cinnamon-flavoured gravy. Whoever first thought of strewing crisp salli on meat gravy was one helluva creative individual – salli adds texture, it adds a starchy contrasting component and it complements the meat as only some form of potato preparation can. With the pav, it is phenomenal – Dorabjee’s pav quality is also miles ahead of the usual kind you will find at a wada-pav or pav-bhaji centre near you. They warm the pav up and scooping the mutton gravy with it, is divine to say the least! It is also completely in keeping with the idea of using some sort of a leavened bread with meat – again, an internationally recognised combination of your basic meat-potato-gravy-bread sort of dish!
Since we had also ordered the mutton cutlet, we put a bit of the cutlet in each of our pav parcels, used it to scoop up the crisp salli and a then a quick furtive splash in the gravy and plopped it inside as a mouthful – yummmmmmm!!! Their mutton/chicken cutlets are the sort I would love to have every day in breakfast and/or as tea time snack if I could. It has a tender minced meat patty which is well combined with herbs and perhaps also onion, and then shallow fried in a coating of egg.
The dessert was the classic lagan nu custard which is a baked custard – it was so good that I would have had another, had I not loaded myself silly with all the other dishes prior to that – have been berating myself endlessly for not saving more space for it! But because I didn’t want to reach the point of diminishing marginal utility too soon by stuffing another plate of the custard into my tummy and ruining the beautiful meal I had just had, I contained the tempting lure of a second helping. So basically I am saying the meal was so good that out of sheer respect for it and in a bid to conserve the happiness I derived from it, I stopped myself from further senseless eating – it thus bestowed on me ‘theraav’ and if a meal can do that, I worship its providers with all my heart!
On weekends, it also serves specials which are listed in the menu. They have a standard black & white menu, one paged, simply printed and laminated! If each of your dishes are such handpicked Parsi classics, who needs reams of stuff on fancy paper with trying-too-hard-to-impress descriptions? It actually has bits, more like afterthoughts, scribbled on it (like handwritten “dum” after the biryani!) which have then been faithfully reproduced in the photocopied-laminated thing you read – what fun! Btw, make sure you go with the dough because they accept only cash.
But you know, I sometimes literally get panic attacks thinking what a dwindling breed such kind of joints, such kind of life, has become in this crass age of late capitalism. My heart truly palpitates in mortal fear that we have such paltry few outlets like it left, where you can sample a heart-warming gastronomic atmosphere exuded with so much ease. It is such a joy for my being to see regular patrons glide in with easy familiarity into the restaurant as if they were dropping by at a friendly neighbour’s for a meal and not at a commercial establishment. If Dorabjee & Sons can exist and prosper over 135 years, it has to be doing something right! May your tribe increase I say to them – and I mean this literally in every sense of the phrase, if you get my innuendo;-)
What better way to celebrate Parsi new year than to gorge on signature Parsi delicacies at this vintage Parsi restaurant which has existed since time immemorial.
Ambience: Located in the part of Pune which has escaped evolution, the ambience has been constant since probably the last century. Tucked away in a corner in the camp area, the entrance is nondescript. For me personally, the plastic tables and chairs and creaking ceiling fans add to the antiquated charm of the place.
Service: The service is usually very prompt and efficient. Today they were a bit flustered with all the rush thanks to the new year, and were at times late in responding to our orders and requests, especially when we ordered for extra helpings. However the apology at the end of the meal more than made up for it.
Taste: We ordered the typical Sunday specials ie Chicken Dhansak, Patrani Macchi and Mutton Shammi Kebab. The kebab was something we had never ordered here and it was outstanding. Minced mutton shallow fried on a tawa; it was crispy on the outside and quite soft on the inside. The mince was a melange of coriander, chili and a whole lot of subtle spices. The dhansak was as always the star of the show. Two gigantic pieces of chicken dipped in the piping hot daal. I've tried to replicate this taste at home, but to no avail. The proportion of spices is the key I guess. Lapped with spoonfuls of the flavoured brown basmati rice, it was a happy new year all right. We finished it off in a jiffy, and immediately ordered one more. The patrani macchi (pomfret fillets slathered with a coriander coconut marinate, wrapped in a banana leaf and steamed to perfection) was an excellent accompaniment to the dhansak.
A sumptuous, healthy and nutritious meal in a vintage setting; what more can one ask for?
if you love Parsi food or have never tried it...this place is to die for....one of the oldest establishments in the city that has been around for 135 YEARS......yes you read it right...this place opened by Dorabjee Sorabjee in 1878 as a humble tea stall and 6 months later he decided to make it a restaurant with his most favorite cuisine and something he was familiar with at home as well Parsi Cuisine, which is one of the oldest and the most mouth watering cuisine in the world....this is the only place in pune to run by the same name and same profession at the same location for that long.....now it is so famous that it is one of the first things people ask you to visit when in pune....the food as always is MAGNIFICENT....try the dhansak, chicken cutlet, sali murgi, chicken farcha, sali boti, and the other things on the menu....writing about this has made my mouth water and will for sure go again today to eat here....!!!
► " A Treat for the Tongue and a legend in Pune City....? "
Its quite wonderful to write my 300th review for a restaurant that is 135 years old. For me, Food is a passion and I always research for the best local delicacies wherever I am. I have read a lot about this place and wanted to visit it since a long time.
Although I had to struggle quite a bit to find the place, this visit reminded me of the famous quote of Harriet Van Horne :- " Cooking is like love. It should be entered into with abandon or not at all." It is one of the oldest and most famous restaurants and is a legend in this Pune city.
Established in 1878, generation after generation, they continues to honor the tradition of serving authentic Parsi food at reasonable prices.
Diners have few options in the menu to choose from. They have a standard menu with delectable Parsi dishes. A very short menu that proffers select dishes in chicken, mutton, snacks and desserts. There is a separate " Sunday Special " items on the menu.
► " A Heavenly Lunch "
I have heard that, the signature dish of Dorabjee is its special biriyani which is distinct and unique. Without any doubt, I placed the order for Mutton Biriyani. The mouth-watering aromas and taste was so tempting enough that it emulsified my tongue for that heavenly feeling.
To indulge my senses,I took a spoon of biriyani onto my tongue and closed my eyes, to discern the taste and relished its own unique flavor. The meat was soft and the juices released by the succulent piece of mutton coupled with the aroma of the rice gave me the feeling of " THE HEAVENLY LUNCH". It is heavenly because it was prepared with finesse and served with love.
The portions were so generous that it didn't leave any room for dessert. If you are a biriyani aficionado, then you can't afford to miss this.
► Novelty Factor:
The food at Dorabjee restaurant is still cooked on charcoal which is their USP. They continue this practice even now and the food still remains brilliant.
► Decor / Ambiance:
Don't visit this place if you crave for ambiance. This place is very simple, hygienic, neat and extremely well maintained.
Simple and Fast.
► In-house Specialties:
>> Mutton Dum Biriyani
>> Sali chicken
Definitely not cheap, but reasonable and value for money and taste buds.
★ If you are a lover of Parsi food, then it might be best to visit on Sundays to try mutton dhansak. So all non-veggies, this place should be on your must list.
★ This place is not recommended for Veggies.
► Here's my two Cents:
Taking about food, whatever you order here will leave you craving for more! This was my first visit to Dorabjee. With the delicious food I received here, certainly this is not my last.
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