In Rishikesh, it is general opinion that if you are a food junkie (or even not), then your trip is incomplete without a visit to Chotiwala restaurant. Chotiwala, with its peculiar name, started off as a small eating outlet about half a century ago. And for past 20 years it has been the most famous dining destination of Rishikesh. But apart from that, today the restaurant has become more of a landmark in the area. In fact, it is so popular that today many fake Chotiwala restaurants have cropped up across the town. So, beware!
The original Chotiwala is located at a walking distance from Ram Jhula into the Rishikesh’s main market area, which makes it pretty much an unmissable place. However, more than that, it is the man who sits outside the restaurant with painted face depicting himself as the Chotiwala that makes this place almost impossible to miss. The welcome guy, ‘Chotiwala’ happily lets visitors take pictures with him. Today, there are two Chotiwala restaurants, side by side, as the owners have split the business. Both carry the family legacy and the recipes – so guests can pick either of the two restaurants.
Chotiwala is also famous for its multi-cuisine menu, which is purely vegetarian and includes North and South Indian, Garhwali, Chinese, and Continental food; actually, pretty much all. However, it is its Royal and Special Thalis that Chotiwala is mostly famous for, which include many Indian dishes, sweets and other mouthwatering delicacies. And of course, if you are looking for a fine dining experience in Rishikesh then Chotiwala should definitely be on the top of your list.
Despite its popularity, Chotiwala offers a good dining experience at a reasonable price. Delicious food, large portion sizes and polite wait staff make it worth much more than the actual money spent. And for westerners, Chotiwala is one place where they can assuredly enjoy authentic Indian food at really cheap prices.
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