Places to Visit in Matunga for Non-Udipi Food
Quaint lanes, old buildings and a smiling face wherever you go. These are the things that come to mind whenever someone mentions Matunga. It is here that you will find the sort of community life that is slowly dying down. But there’s one other thing that is as synonymous with Matunga as fashion is with Paris – food. People always come here for an authentic South Indian breakfast. Upma at Sharda Bhavan, pineapple sheera and Mysore Masala Dosa at Ram Ashray, all followed by a glass of piping hot filter coffee. Sure, Matunga does have a lot of fantastic Udipi hotels. But what if I said that there was so much more to treat yourself to here?
So sit back and relax as you scroll through this list of 15 places to visit in Matunga for delicious NON-Udipi food.
The Bogeto Café, near Matunga Gymkhana
Matunga’s own Italian restaurant! This place has become the new hangout spot for college students. Try their Summer Pesto pizza. Pesto sauce on crisp and warm pizza bread never tasted better! They also put together a mean dish of pasta; Arrabbiata is a personal favourite.
Quick Tip: Look out for their unique menu, scrawled on the blackboard. They’re always something to look forward to.
Café Gulshan, near Welingkar College
This is where you will typically find students in the afternoons– MBAs from Welingkar’s, students from Ruia or Podar College, etc. They make a delicious plate of Schezwan Maggi Masala. You must also try out the veg or chicken dum biryani and the Egg Masala, which can be created with 2 or 3 eggs, depending on your choice.
Quick Tip: Remember to keep your cool with the servers, who may at first come across as rude. They’re real softies who will remember you and your favourites if you’re nice!
Durga Restaurant & Bar, near Matunga station
The four walls of Durga Restaurant & Bar hide the tastiest biryani in town. Step in for a drink or two but do not leave without tasting their awesome paneer biryani. You will find thick, soft pieces of paneer layered between the rice and the delicious gravy. Just try and keep yourselves from going for seconds!
Quick Tip: Don’t let the steep prices keep you from tasting the food. It’s worth it!
Food Arcade, behind Kapol Niwas
At Food Arcade, try both the bhel and the sev puri and also gulp down some pani puris while you’re at it. The secret ingredient is their signature chutney. The freshly sliced pieces of kachi kairi that the cooks generously add to the mix doesn’t hurt either.
Quick Tip: Try the Sukha Bhel if you love some spice in your chaat.
Gupta Snacks, outside Matunga station
The Gupta name flies high in Matunga! One must-try dish here is the Sev Puri Toast Sandwich. You should also order a plate of their Cheese Sev Puri, the Corn Toast Sandwich, and the bhel if you want something tangy to finish off your meal.
Quick Tip: Make sure to come here with a raging appetite, because they have plenty to offer on their menu.
Dabeli outside Choosy Cherry Stores
You haven’t tasted dabeli unless you’ve had one (or two) from this leading vendor in Matunga. Look for the ‘Choosy Cherry’ store, falling on the same line as Pramanik and Paisley, and it will lead you to a (paper) plate of perfection. The dabeli is sprinkled with peanuts and a thick chutney that has a lingering aftertaste, for those who like it.
Quick Tip: Ask for the Cheese Garlic Pav, which sells like hotcakes and prepare to be wowed!
Koolar & Co., King’s Circle
Don’t be surprised if you happen to visit this Irani café and find it peppered with cameras and film equipment. Koolar & Co. has witnessed a large number of film shootings, tales of which you can entertain yourself with by talking to the man behind the counter. Go here for their bhurji pav, kheema pav, bun muska, caramel custard and Irani chai.
Quick Tip: The only thing you need to have loads of before visiting, is PATIENCE. (The servers have a bit of a temper)
Rahul Rolls, King’s Circle
A relatively new addition to Matunga’s food scene is Rahul Rolls. Go here for the Paneer Roll, served hot with generous cubes of spiced paneer, sliced onions and a sprinkling of chaat masala that’ll have you going for more.
Quick Tip: Since this is very centrally located, many people come here to eat, so be prepared to wait for your order.
Madhu Sandwich, Deodhar Road
Madhu’s is probably Matunga’s oldest sandwich stall. Frequent visitors are always greeted with a warm smile and a ‘Kaise ho?’ by the father-son duo who run the stall. Get a taste of their simple vegetable sandwiches; cheese can be added for an additional fee. One bite in and the chutney will leave you speechless – it’s that brilliant!
Quick Tip: Taste Madhu’s popular Samosa Sandwich and the Kolhapuri Cheese Toast.
5 Spice Veg, King’s Circle
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Yes, Matunga has a 5 Spice outlet! The Kung Pao potatoes are lip-smacking and all of their Pot Rice varieties are delicious. End your meal with their signature dessert – Mission Impossible.
Quick Tip: 5 Spice serves liberal quantities of food, often leading to wastage if you’re calling for home delivery. So order wisely.
Guddu’s Tawa Pulao & Pav Bhaji, King’s Circle
This is every Matunga-Sion-Dadar resident’s go-to Sunday night meal. Guddu’s opens up only at night but people wait patiently for their parcels or eat right there. The tawa pulao is to-die-for The pav bhaji tastes great too, but some people do not like the slightly burnt/charcoal like aftertaste that it leaves behind.
Quick Tip: Remember to ask for the fresh chopped salad with the pulao.
Pankaj Juice Center, Bhaudaji Road
One of the two most popular juice stalls in Matunga, Pankaj is famous for its milkshakes, pizzas and grilled sandwiches. When you’re passing by, you will undoubtedly be greeted by the delightful scent of hot pizza, which will make you want to stop and eat, STAT.
Quick Tip: Don’t leave without trying the Paneer Pizza.
Health Juice Center, King’s Circle
While here, try the Pahadi Grill Sandwich. Thick slices of bread with the tastiest filling ever, it’s served with coriander chutney, garlic chutney, tomato ketchup and wafers. We promise, you will leave with a heart as full as your stomach.
Quick Tip: Do try their Cocktail and King Blossom juices. You will come back for more.
Jayesh, opposite Ruia College
Frequented by college students, Jayesh is a place selling hot and delicious vada pavs. The lasoon chutney is unbelievable. The samosas are good too, but everybody goes here for the vada pav.
Quick Tip: Be smart and ask for extra lasoon chutney. You will need it.
China Man, opposite Ruia College
This is one of Matunga’s most popular Chinese restaurants. If quick service and a tasty meal is all you want, minus the frills and the fancy, China Man is where you must go. Their Lai-Bhaari chicken is quite a favorite dish! In terms of mains, order the Shanghai Rice, Egg Triple Rice or the Triple Noodles.
Quick Tip: The portions here are very generous, so keep that in mind before you order.
And that, folks, was a quick roundup of the culinary gems that good old Matunga seems to be hiding. Go try these places out for yourselves, already!