Agra isn’t just about monuments. I explored the food joints of this city on my third visit and I visited some of the most famous food places including Chaat Gali of Agra.
Agra, a magnificent city that also served as the Mughal capital for long, was a complete surprise for me when I got an opportunity to explore this city other than just Taj Mahal and the fort. Being a food and travel enthusiast, I often look for places that satisfy both desires. Guess what, Agra filled me with everything from monuments to cuisines. A major city of Golden Triangle Circuit (Jaipur, Delhi, Agra), this city needs no introduction. From locals to the tourists, everyone must have heard this name; well most of the time for Taj Mahal, and honestly, I too had the same impressions. That’s what I had been taught since childhood. Being a city which was ruled by several dynasties including Mughal, Suri, British, etc. this city fails to mark its presence on the cuisine map of India. Okay! So, on my last trip of this year before lockdown, I went to explore the famous Chaat Gali of Agra as a part of my Agra Food Tour.
I wonder why I had missed this place on my last two trips. The reason can be only one as far as I remember. My previous trips were only for one day in Agra. And it’s not really easy to cover several things in a day. Two days were enough for me to visit this famous Chaat Wali Gali of Agra along with several other food joints and historical places in the city. It was a planned trip since I was traveling with a friend so we did good use of whatever the time we had in our hands for two days. Reaching in the morning at Agra and leaving back to Delhi in the night, we pretty much enjoyed this weekend trip.
Stepping into the paradise of every street food lover – Chaat Gali Agra
We decided to visit chaat wali gali of Agra in the evening. I don’t know if there is any concept behind it but I have usually noticed street food is served in the evening only. My foremost encounter with street food was perhaps in Gurgaon sector 4 where I used to live in a hostel there near the market. Even after leaving the hostel and shifting to some other place, I often came to the sector 4 market of Gurgaon, most of the time, to remember the past days and to taste the street food there.
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So, the chaat gali of Agra is among the most iconic places you must visit if you are in the city. This street is full of street food stalls and cafes, eateries on both sides. You take and walk across the gali (lane/street) and search what triggers your taste buds. Is it the red sauce pasta or the tangy-spicy aloo tikki chaat? Are you a gol-gappa/panipuri lover or you want an icecream/faluda? Just look around and your eyes will spot the stall in just a blink. The aroma of street foods being prepared here at every stall will reach to your heart through your nose. That’s what this street food heaven does to every food lover.
Agra’s Chaat Gali stands as a cultural food place and has been celebrating and serving people for a long time. I am not sure if there is any exact date when this chaat gali was started. All I assure is that it is old. If you know any oldest shop in chaat gali of Agra, do let me know in the comment section below. So far, I had only thought that Agra was famous for two things, one petha, and the second Taj Mahal. Chaat Gali was a new addition to my learning about this city.
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Chaats I tasted at Khau Gali Agra
Well, you may find this place mentioned as Khau Gali at some place. So, at first, we both (I and my friend Anupam) took a round of chaat gali. We saw all the stalls and decided our cuisine journey. It was full of so many eateries and street food joints that we found it hard to start. After a short discussion, we started our food-adventure with the mouth-watering gol gappa. After all, how can we miss gol gappa (also known as puchka in Bengali). I am a great pani puri lover. While I lockdown, we couldn’t go out to have pani puchka, we bought the ready-made pani puchkas and pani powder, prepared it at home, and enjoyed it several times.
After pani puchkas, we headed to a street food shop located around the entrance of Chaat gali, named Agra Chaat House. The place has a decent crowd, from kids to seniors. The smell of boiled potatoes being fried on a giant metal plate, the smell of chutney and what should I tell you. I ordered one aloo tikkki which came in leaf bowl. The crispy, hot aloo tikki, along with some nuts, poured over by red and green sauce, sprinkled with coriander leaves. The mere glimpse of it filled my mouth with water.
After tasting the aloo tikki chaat, we headed to our next place. Anupam wanted to try chuski or ice gola. This street dessert brings lots of childhood memories. The ice is finely crushed, stuffed into a cup and then poured over with different flavors such as rose, lemon, kala khatta, jamun, etc. This simple, yet interesting Indian street dessert is easy to enjoy, just take the gola and keep sucking the flavor.
Since it was getting dark so we came out of the chaat gali of Sadar Bazar. We found a nice dessert shop at the corner by the name Falooda Corner. Falooda is an Indian take of the Persian dish Faloodeh. It is prepared with milk, by mixing rose syrup, vermicelli, desserts, dry fruits, etc. While I first tasted the softy (softy cone), then we went inside the shop. The shop owner was so humble and generous that he showed us his shop and shared many things. I did his interview which you can watch by clicking Agra Food walk video. He even told that his shop had a small shot in the movie Dreamgirl by Ayushman Khurana. We tried his famous falooda and he refused to charge us but we paid him. It was really nice talking to him and knowing his experience.
Our tour of Chaat gali Agra came to an end there. It was getting dark and it also started raining. So, we quickly wrapped up everything and made our way back home.
Chaat Gali Agra (Sadar Bazar) Reviews
It is a nice place to visit if you are a foodie or street food love. This range of cuisine at this place just doesn’t end with Indian street food but you can find a variety of dishes such as pasta, pizza, burgers, etc. Moreover, from open street food stalls to proper sitting cafes, restaurants, you have everything there. This place is pocket friendly as well, nothing costly and most of the stalls accept GPay or other UPI payments. I am not sure about the exact timings of chaat gali Agra. I visited there in the evening hours and it remains open till night.