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After all the wait, it is finally that time when the frenzy is at its peak in the city. It is Durga Puja. Shopping, new clothes, roadblocks, traffic jams, new restaurant launches, set menus, meeting friends, family get-togethers, pandal hopping, community pujo and eating to the heart's delight; that is Durga Puja in short. No one cooks at home. Everyone is either at a friend’s place, ordering takeaways, eating at the community hall or checking out pujo special menus at various city restaurants. Here are top 7 Pujo Mahabhoj from the city 5 stars in no particular order.
Oberoi Grand Kolkata, like every year, is doing their celebrated Grand Pujor Mahabhoj from the 27th till the 29th of September for lunch and dinner buffet and the 30th for lunch buffet only. Savour into the delights of traditional Bengali meal with exquisite cooking par excellence from the kitchen of Oberoi Grand and enjoy delicacies such as mochar chop, prawn kabiraji, the best kosha mangsho in town, morog pulao and more. In addition to this, there is also traditional Hilsa dishes on a la carte basis. The dessert section is to watch out for and Grand does its mishti in house in a grand style. Try the raj bhog, gurer sandesh, khirer shingara, kamala bhog, langcha and so on.
Pocket Pinch: Rs. 2000 plus taxes per person
Taj Bengal has a variety of offerings across its outlets. However, the one to catch our attention is at Sonargaon - a flavour on Bengal. Traditional Bengali cuisine in all its glory in a thali format with mouthwatering delicacies like cholar dal, chingri malaikari, sorshe bata ilish, Pabnar murgi, doodh rosogolla and many more is what you will find from the 27th till the 30th of September for both lunch and dinner service.
Pocket Pinch: Chingri Hilsa Thali - Rs. 2900 plus taxes, Aamish Thali - Rs. 2500 plus taxes, Niramish Thali - Rs. 2200 plus taxes.
Additionally, if you are an ardent fan of Chinese food, then a trip to Chinoiserie is a must where a special a la carte menu has been crafted for these days with dishes like crispy aromatic duck, trio of mushroom pepper salt, braised lemon chicken and so on.
Pocket Pinch: Rs. 4000 plus taxes for 2 people
ITC Sonar, Kolkata too has a variety of offering across its outlets, however, our pick is Eden Pavilion and Pan Asian for obvious reasons, the former has traditional Bengali dishes in the buffet and the latter being the love for all things Oriental in Kolkata. One will find delicately prepared dishes like kosha mangsho, murgr korma, bhekti paturi, chingri malaikari, mishti doi, baked mihidana and so on at the elaborate lunch and dinner buffet between the 27th and 30th of September.
Pocket Pinch: Rs. 2000 plus taxes for lunch and Rs. 2100 plus taxes for dinner. In both cases, there is an upgrade for Rs. 499 for premium beverages and Rs. 1499 for sparkling beverages.
Pan Asian, on the other hand is going all guns blazing with a special set menu for lunch and a la carte for dinner. The delicacies include handcrafted sushi and sashimi platter, prawn takrai, soba noodles, crumb coated seafood, jumbo prawns in ginger, garlic and soy, steamed fish rolls in oyster sauce and so on.
Pocket Pinch: Rs. 2499 plus taxes for lunch. The upgrades remain the same as Eden Pavilion.
The Park, Kolkata is celebrating Pujo Mahabhoj at The Bridge, Rosewood Hall from the 27th till the 29th of September and Saffron from the 25th of September till the 5th of October with selective and delicious dishes like macher chop, peyaji, chingrir malaikari, luchi alur dom, chhanar kofta, mishti doi cheese cake, apple pie paturi and many more. Saffron has special kebabs and biryani menu on the offering.
Pocket Pinch: Lunch and Dinner Buffet at The Bridge and Rosewood at Rs. 1995 AI.
The Gateway Hotel, famous for its Bangladeshi cuisine will have festive lunch and dinner buffet from the 27th till the 30th of September (27th dinner only, 30th lunch only). The splendid buffet includes dishes from Purbo and Paschim Bangla (which is a speciality of this place), western cuisines and local favourites too. Bite into some seafood platters on ice, live grill seafood counter, alu chingri bati chorchori, dhakai roast murgi, bele machher shukto, aar tel jhal, doi shorshe, badam doi, chandrapuli and so on.
Pocket Pinch: Rs. 1749 plus taxes
The Lalit Great Eastern Kolkata has Festive Indulgence across its outlets. From the 26th till the 29th of September, Alfresco with a combination of Epar and Opar Bangla delicacies for both lunch and dinner. Some of the special dishes will be Khulnar bhekti tikia, Chui jhaler gosht, Murshidabad morog biryani, bhekti patishapta, kesar rajbhog, noengurer baked doi and so on.
Pocket Pinch: Rs. 2499 AI
The Bakery and Wilson’s, on the other hand, will have lunch and dinner buffet between 26th to 28th of September and Midnight Buffet on those days between Midnight to 3:30 AM for all those pandal hoppers delight. The menu will have delectable dishes from the ‘four pillars of Kolkata’menu like mochar chop, biryani, Kolkata kathi roll, Shanghai chicken, Nizami delicacies, Anglo Indian dishes and the likes.
Pocket Pinch: Rs. 2299 AI and Rs. 1199 AI for the midnight buffet.
Novotel, Kolkata has around the clock pujo celebrations between the 24th and 30th of September which brings in finger-licking appetising delicacies from fish fingers, peyaji to roshogolla along with beverages like gondhoraj lemon mojito and a festive buffet spread at The Square. While there is a very elaborate special Bengali Thali curated for The Studio which includes staples like luchi, ghee bhaat, main course of vegetarian and non-vegetarian delights like alur dom, kosha mangsho, bhapa ilish, cholar dal, jhinge alu posto, an aaray of bhaja, a variety of mishti and gondhoraj ghol. Since the celebration is round the clock, you will even find a breakfast buffet with luchi, radha ballabi etc .
Pocket Pinch: Non-Veg Thali at Rs 1600, Veg Thali at Rs. 1200 plus taxes. Breakfast is at Rs. 900 plus taxes, lunch at Rs. 999 plus taxes and dinner buffet at Rs. 1299 plus taxes.
For someone who's run two restaurants, being a baker and cook par excellence comes easily to Madhushree . When she's not eating out, she's organizing her own pop ups or experimenting with regional recipes. Her experiments with food and her recipes are part of Pikturenama , where she's a co founder.