the wonderful world of veena.

24 February 2015

hello hyderabad: paradise biryani.

Since I was in Hitech City to see The Imitation Game, I decided to make the most of it and treat myself to dinner at Paradise Food Court.

As soon as I announced that I would be coming to Hyderabad for work, nearly everyone I know who has ever been here chimed in to tell me that I had to eat at Paradise. Famous for their mutton biryani, Paradise has become the go-to in the city for the dish. I have a great affinity for biryani, so I obviously knew I would need to get there at some point.

There's not a Paradise location near my office or where I'm staying, so it took me some time to finally be in close proximity to one, and I am so glad I finally made it.

[just look at that yummy goodness on my plate]
The Paradise location in Hitech City has three different options based on what you want: the ground floor is solely a take-away counter; the first floor is a pretty nice air-conditioned restaurant [a must during summer, which has already begun here]; and the second floor is a terrace-level air-conditioned restaurant. I ate at the restaurant on the first floor, and my only guess for the difference between the two restaurants would be price and potential views, although the curtains were all drawn when I was there.

Considering it was 9.30pm on a Saturday night, the restaurant was busy but not crowded, and I settled into a nice corner table. My waiter was very friendly and courteous, probably owing to the fact that they don't often get women in there dining on their own.

[my full spread. it was more than my stomach could handle]
All the offerings on the menu sounded delicious, and I would have loved some kebabs as a starter, but I hate wasting food and so had to pass. All I ordered was mutton biryani, and I'm so glad I listened to my instincts, as the portion was huge!

The biryani itself was delicious, and the masala was mouth-watering, but my favourite part was the mutton: the meat was so tender that it practically fell apart as soon as I touched it. The only other time that happens is when I eat Sheilamma's biryani, so that's how you know it's good.

[my very sweet waiter saw me taking photos of my dinner and offered to take one of me as well. i figured it would make my mother happy and my father and brother jealous, so i said yes]
I stuffed myself as full as I could, but I admit I had to leave a little bit of the rice at the end, because I was bursting at my seams. My dinner was delicious, and I think I amused my waiter with how much I enjoyed the food.

I can be ornery and sometimes skip the places that everyone goes to, but in the case of Paradise everyone goes there because the food is excellent and so is the service. If you find yourself in Hyderabad - or in a city where they've opened an outlet, such as Bangalore - take yourself there at once. You won't be sorry.

Here's to some biryani-filled dreams for the next few nights.

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