Bademiya: Colaba's Culinary Firmament

Its the street food that makes Mumbai special! From the chana-wallahs at Gateway, to ganna-wallahs and paan-wallahs, seemingly at every corner; and the vada-paav baakdas at Fountain. And of course, Bademiya in the seedy gulli behind the Taj Mahal Hotel.

As a school kid, I remember the rickety cart on the sidewalk coming to life after the carpet and antique stores had closed for the day. Baida-roti and boti-kebabs were the big draw then. We gaped in awe of Bollywood stars hanging out there in the early hours of the morning – way, way past my bedtime.

Now its a very elaborate affair and Bademiya has acquired legendary status on Bombay's culinary circuit. There are two elaborate stalls (you can't call these carts any more). Folding tables and chairs on sidewalks seat about 50. Waitstaff in uniforms are ever present serving your every need. But they can't do anything about that open drain next to our table, or that mangy dog walking uncomfortably close by.

Managers are constantly taking orders for 'take-out' and cars drive by to pick up their stuff. Drugs and skin trade is live and well too. None of this bothers me as I grew up in the thick of this area. This IS the real bombay, my dear! The hippies are all hanging out at the Cafe Leopold around the corner, munching on peanuts, burping beer and rolling joints. Or you can always saunter over to the sterile Delhi Darbar – a stones throw away.

For me, I'll take a few orders of their kebabs and kheema roti, the calico street cat rubbing against my leg not withstanding.

Workers sweating over the grill. WoT! Gloves and all, to give a veneer of hygiene.

I can smell the kebabs at my keyboard. Brain playing tricks again!

The lucky dudes got seats. We had to wait 15 minutes. Snobs of course sit and eat in their cars. They don't want the low-life ogling their perfumed girl friends.

Mumbai Street Foods:

11 thoughts on “Bademiya: Colaba's Culinary Firmament

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    1. Shesh:
      This is truly one of the best places for kebabs in Mumbai ~ if you don’t mind sitting on the sidewalk and putting up with the rest of the stuff.

      BTW, Are you from Mumbai? Have you been there?

  1. Hey nice to hear for such a lover of street food…. i have formulated a club and looking for people like you who can update about whats hot n whats not on the street of various city of our country ….

    My club is on facebook and you are invited there to join us for the latest updates…. the name of the club is street food

  2. For us who grew up next to the galli of Bade Miya, it was called chocolate galli…with pav wala galli and chaki ka aata galli…wow good old days..

    pani kum chai and brun pav maska lagake…yummy..was my favourite breakfast..before going to School(Holy Name High School)

    and dont forget…behind the galli was aunty selling country liqour…LOL

    1. Awesome, Awesome!
      that chaki ka aata wallah is still there, though brun pav maska lagake is rare! Haai! The Irani dukan below my house has now turned ‘lebanese/mediterranean’ cuisine! 😦
      Went to HNHS too! what year?

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