Embark on an epic epicurean journey with JW Marriott Chandigarh

The ‘Purani Dilli Ka Zaika’ food festival at The Café@JW with veteran Guest Chef Sweety Singh rediscovers the region’s culinary roots through storied delicacies from the gastronomic gullies of Purani Dilli.


For a city with a history as storied as Delhi, there are many secrets, gems and cultural marvels spread across its map. While today’s Delhi is at par with any leading metropolis in the world, its soul and true essence breathes in the gullies of Purani Dilli.

You only need to visit the streets of a city and savour its cuisine to know all about its culture. The streets of Purani Dilli are like a canvas painted with the story of the city’s evolution and the food they serve reveals the many historical influences which have shaped its identity.

With Delhi having a profound influence on the culture of North India, JW Marriott Chandigarh has embarked on an epic epicurean journey to demystify the extensive culinary history of the historic Purani Dilli. As a curator of eclectic and exotic culinary experiences, JW Marriott Chandigarh is organising ‘Purani Dilli Ka Zaika’ food festival at The Café@JW, the all-day dining restaurant at the hotel.

Much like how Delhi’s history has been shaped by mighty kings & emperors, the delightful spread for this festival has been shaped by ‘Swaad De Badshah’, Executive Chef Japvir Vohra of JW Marriott Chandigarh & Guest Chef Sweety Singh, an acclaimed expert on Delhi’s authentic cuisine. With streets being mirrors that reflect the story of a city’s evolution, this dynamic duo are inviting patrons to cross over to the gastronomic gullies of Purani Dilli by building gastronomic bridges to our delicious past.

In a beautiful culmination of flavours and aromas, at the ‘Purani Dilli Ka Zaika’ food festival, patrons of JW Marriott Chandigarh will get to relish street favourites from Purani Dilli like Stuffed Paranthas, a trademark from the world famous Paranthe Wali Gali. Topping the popularity charts will be the spicy, sweet and sour Chaat in its various forms and all its glory.

Explaining the versatility of food found in the streets of Delhi, Chef Sweety Singh aka Harjinder Singh, an expert Guest Chef famous for his ingenious North Indian preparations, introduces us to the vast culinary history of the city through his exclusive menu, includes inherited recipes developed and perfected over decades. “The old city or Purani Dilli shares an intimate relationship with the many dynasties that have ruled the mainland including Pandavas, Tomars, Mughals and Britishers and the many communities that assimilated into the socio-cultural fabric of the city like Punjabis, Baniyas, Tibetians and Bengalis to name a few. The outcome of all these influences can be witnessed through the food found in the streets of Purani Dilli which are home to people from diverse backgrounds,” shares Chef Sweety Singh.

Sharing anecdotes from history to explain the evolution of the culinary culture in Delhi, Chef Sweety explains that sanjha chulha or common community kitchen with a clay oven (tandoor) in the centre was a part of Delhi’s social culture especially for immigrants and refugee communities travelling to the city. While the culture in the city has evolved and modernised, the tandoori and tawa style of cooking still exists in the streets of Old Delhi. The ‘Purani Dilli Ka Zaika’ food festival features many such roasted and tawa tributes, some of which are kebabs like the Lahori Paneer Tikka spiked with a special yellow chilli found only in Pakistan and the Highway Tandoori Kukad, an amalgamation of the flavours introduced by travellers of the Sher Shah Suri road.

Showcasing this unity in diversity as found in Delhi’s culture are dishes like Changezi Chicken, a remnant delicacy from the reign of Genghis Khan; Marwadi-style Khasta Kachori; the traditional slow-cooked Punjabi wonders including Dal Makhni and Sarson da Saag as well as the Pindi Cholle which has its root in Rawalpindi, Pakistan. Add to this the many traditional recipes from the Tandoor and Tawa, the ‘Purani Dilli Ka Zaika’ food festival will well and truly transport into many eras over a delightful dining experience.

Amongst the dishes fresh off the Tawa or flat iron pan, a must try is the Tawa Pulao, a popular take on Biryani, Tawa Brain Masala, a favourite winter dish amongst Dehlvis and much more. The ‘Purani Dilli Ka Zaika’ food festival not only serves the purpose of mesmerizing patrons through wonders tucked away in the streets of Purani Dilli but also looks to explore culinary gems from our own native cuisine which could put any international cuisine to shade.

“In today’s world, we have access to cuisines from across the world which we are keen explore. While marvelling at the artistry of these cuisines, we, at times, tend to forget the gems from our own native cuisine which are gastronomic gems and culinary masterpieces of the highest order. With elements of Purani Dilli’s culinary heritage traceable in the culinary cultures across north India, we have made an effort to enable the patrons of the region to demystify the extensive culinary history of Purani Dilli and in turn rediscover their own culinary roots,” shares Chef Japvir Singh Vohra, Executive Chef, JW Marriott Chandigarh. The ‘Purani Dilli Ka Zaika’ food festival at The Café@JW is bringing together the rich and the infinite treasures of cuisine, scattered within the alleys of Shahjahanabad or Old Delhi that best represent the nuances of North Indian cuisines.

The bustling streets of old Delhi are nothing less than a warm degustation meal with every turn opening doors to a new course, a different vibe and a novel culinary experience just waiting to be discovered. Think Old Delhi, and you are immediately transported to the gastronomic treasures it holds, the lanes of chaats, crispy paranthas, succulent kebabs and sinful sweetmeats. Chef Sweety Singh will be recreating all these and much more to conjure the magic of Purani Dilli at The Café@JW, JW Marriott Chandigarh starting December 13th till December 22nd.

For the lovers of all things sweet, a must try by Chef Sweety Singh is ‘Meat ka Halwa’ an ancestral recipe of a dessert that Chef Sweety inherited from his father, a popular local artisan from Purani Dilli. Yet another gem from the dessert menu is the traditional Kesari Kheer, set and served in the traditional kulhad.   

The ‘Purani Dilli Ka Zaika’ Food Festival will take you through the culinary tour of old Delhi spanning through time, dynasties and generations. You can savour this delectable dining experience at The Café@JW starting December 13th as a dinner buffet priced at INR 2100 plus taxes per head. You can walk in or can also call at 0172-455 5555 to reserve your table at The Cafe@JW at JW Marriott Chandigarh.


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