The Best Food Tours in Delhi

by  Matthew Wexler | Nov 18, 2019
New Delhi, India
New Delhi, India / YURY_TARANIK/iStock

It’s been 88 years since New Delhi was officially inaugurated as India’s capital, but its dynamic history dates back hundreds of years. The amalgamation of cultures has resulted in a vibrant culinary scene. For those seeking immersive experiences that celebrate the country's past as well as future, there's no better place to savor the Delhi’s expansive flavors. 

Delhi Food Walks founder and “Foodie-in-Chief” Anubhav Sapra has made it his mission to introduce travelers to Delhi’s culinary bounty. The company’s newest offering, “A Day in Delhi,” (INR 6,500; $92 per person) offers an expansive trek through various neighborhoods, culminating in a visit to Khari Baoli, Asia’s oldest spice market, for freshly brewed chai tea. Sapra and his team dispel the myth of “Delhi Belly,” having scouted food-safe locales for international guests and proving that not all Indian food tops the Scoville scale.

With dozens of festivals throughout the year, consider booking a private tour (rates start at INR 5,400; $76 per person) for a customized experience that might include New Delhi’s bustling hub of Connaught Place, a night tour of Old Delhi, or the Tibetan influences found in Majnu-ka-tilla.

Robindro Saikhom founded Serene Journeys to share his love of India with travelers from all walks of life, including the LGBTQ community. His luxury itineraries, which include small groups as well as private tours, focus on boutique properties rather than sprawling resorts. He prefers to arrange bespoke food experiences in private homes rather than a commercial cooking school. Saikhom will even travel with clients to local markets to procure groceries and cook at his residence. (Two-day Delhi tours with airport transfer start at INR 21,300; $300 per person, excluding hotels.)

Five-star accommodations throughout New Delhi are also making their mark with both traditional and international offerings. ITC Maurya’s legendary Bukhara restaurant, which opened in 1991, continues to draw crowds with its tandoor-inspired menu. Diners swarm in for Chef J.P Singh’s masterful dishes, including the standout Sikandari Raan — braised lamb with malt vinegar, cinnamon, black cumin, and chili paste finished in the signature tandoor oven. 

Internationally renowned restaurants have also found roots in Delhi, including two outposts at the regal yet contemporary Leela Palace New Delhi. Megu’s omakase menu features bites such as sweet corn tofu and wild scallops with kinome leaves, while Le Cirque’s Chef de Cuisine Matteo Fontana interjects some of his Italian roots into the restaurant’s upscale French cuisine.

United Airlines offers direct service from Newark to Delhi. Its newly outfitted Polaris business class service will kick off or cap an exquisite adventure with Saks Fifth Avenue bedding, Sunday Riley amenities, and pajamas for a restful flight. Additionally, Serene Journeys offers worry-free escorted airport pick-up (Indira Gandhi International Airport) with a representative at the terminal gate upon arrival to guide guests through immigration, baggage collection, and hotel transfer.

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