HYDERABAD: What’s synonymous to Hyderabad? Some would say pearls, some others would say Charminar, and of course Biryani. However, there is something more Hyderabadi than that – it is the culture of heading over to an Irani Chai Cafe for a cuppa tea teamed with some Osmania biscuits or anda-bread. Keeping this idea in mind, Taj Banjara has recently opened another in-house restaurant, called the Chai Shop.
The name itself gives it away – the restaurant has on offer a wide variety of teas. Apart from Sulemani chai and Irani chai among others, the restaurant also offers yummy snacks like Tootak, Keema ke Garlay, Irani Haleem, Bun-omlette, Vada-pau, Samosas and so on.
It is not just the menu that is typically Irani, but the management has also worked towards the ambience and tried to keep it as authentic as possible. The walls of Chai Shop are adorned with framed pictures of various yesteryear actors from Bollywood – like Kishore Kumar, Madhubala and Dev Anand. Added to that is a Juke Box, which plays all kinds of classic numbers, be it in Hindi or English.
“The idea behind the Chai Shop was to provide an easy and comfortable hang-out spot for everyone in the city. Right from a college student who wants to relax with friends over chai and samosa, to a person who just wants a calm ambience to catch up on his reading, Chai Shop is an ideal place,” explains Ranju Singh, general manager, Taj Banjara. He further adds, “We have tried to keep the prices of the products as reasonable as possible, when compared to the prices that are offered at a five-star hotel.”
An Irani Chai is available at `55, whereas a pint of beer at around `75 (quite unusual for the conventional prices of a high-end hotel). However, the food is priced a little towards the higher side, as compared to an Irani Chai Cafe. The Chai Shop is open from 12:30 to 10:30 pm at the hotel.