And the award for India’s tastiest lamb kebabs goes to… Karim’s in Old Delhi. The 100-year-old street meat institution is one of ten stops on Anubhav Sapra’s five-hour Delhi Food Walks dinner tour. He also runs breakfast-, lunch-, and tea-themed tours, as well as classes on Indian vegetarian cooking and making Dilli street foods at home. His offerings go pretty deep, so read the descriptions carefully before booking.
What makes Sapra’s food tours so excellent? He keeps the groups small—ours had just four people, us included. He is flexible with booking dates, provides guests with bottled water and hand sanitizer, and offers tips for navigating Delhi’s chaotic and labyrinthine Chawri Bazaar and Chandni Chowk markets. We walked single-file most of the way due to congestion, but Sapra was always turning around to make sure he hadn’t lost any of us.
But about the food—it’s crazy delicious! We sampled ghee-tastic jalebis, fat stuffed parathas, real butter chicken (which is not at all like the imposter butter chicken you find in the States), and fruity-fresh kulfi (Indian ice cream). The walk was well-paced, so you don’t get too full too soon, and it featured a mix of sit-down joints and curbside noshing. We also like that it traversed a range of Sikh, Muslim, and Hindu neighborhoods, and that Sapra mixed in cultural stops as well—like a visit to the communal kitchen at the Gurudwara Sis Ganj Sahib Sikh temple. That was a real highlight.
We paid 4,000 rupees ($64.23 USD at the time) per person for our walk. Could you go to all of these places for far cheaper on your own? Sure. But let’s be honest: You won’t, nor would you feel as comfortable as you will in Sapra’s company. When you’re with him, you feel welcome eating where tourists rarely go. Sapra also offers valuable context and access; it’s like having your own personal Anthony Bourdain-style fixer!
The tour we took ended late (around 10 p.m.) and Sapra went out of his way to make sure everyone got home safely. The other couple were dropped off with their car and driver; Sapra rode with us in a tuk-tuk all the way back to our hotel. He even handled the negotiations with the driver and picked up the tab and tip—unnecessary but very much appreciated. Highly, highly recommended.