I am sure you would agree with me if I say Paan and Kolkata share together a very unique relation, wont you? Paan also comes with diverse flavours across the country, but the experience of having a paan in Kolkata is one of its kinds and can never be replicated with an option. Kolkata has end number of little “Paan Ki Dukkan”, in fact each and every little lane has their own paan shop. But there are some which just stand out in the huge crowd. So lets check out today the most popular paan shops in Kolkata.
The Most Popular Paan Shops in Kolkata
Photo by sayamindu
There are many reasons which contribute to the popularity of these shops. One of the major reason is their delicious paan of course which come in a variety of different flavours. So how about tasting ice paan, an ice-cream paan or a chocolate paan? Sounds interestingly yummy isn’t it? But trust me these paan shops are setting great examples when it comes to experimenting with flavours, and the best part is that the people actually love it. So comes a list of the most popular paan shops in Kolkata, so and grab a paan in the city of joy!
1. Shibuji – Shakespeare Sarani (Wood Street Crossing)
Starting this list with one of my favourites, well this one also takes me back to my college days. Shibuji is located just at the crossing of Shakespeare Sarani and Wood Street. They are very popular among the school and the college students. You have to try their soda-shikanzi and paan, well these two things make them pretty popular. Shibuji also offers a wide range of chaats and Kulfis, no wonder it is always crowded with people at any time of the day. While this shop has many customers flocking around, there is some street food vendors placed just beside their shop. These vendors also have some exciting stuff to offer!
Talking about the typical Shibuji paan, they have this extremely sweet range of paans. The prices of the paan usually depend of the kind you select, but it would normally range from Rs.15 – Rs. 40. Shibuji serves more than 1,000 customers almost every day, isn’t that amazing? The speciality of this place is the use of“special chutney” in their paan, which is a secret of the owner Lalan Singh.
2. Taj Mahal Paan Shop – New Market
The Taj mahal paan shop is another popular paan shop located in the New market area. Well it would be easier to locate if you know Aminia (popular for Biriyanis) in the new market area. The Taj Mahal paan shop is immensely popular among the Kolkatians, no one ever misses to visit this shop each time they visit the New Market – Esplanade area. I remember after having a delicious treat at Aminia, we used to straight head towards the Taj Mahal Paan Shop. This shop is over 100 years old and you have to try their legendary paans. On visiting this shop you would notice one typical thing and that is the pictures of its celebrity customers who visited them. The shop always has some retro Hindi music playing which adds to its retro ambience.
Do try their specialty the “meetha ice paan”, the name itself is so interesting isn’t it? Well might look like a normal paan, but the difference is the special homemade gulkand which is made from rose petals, saccharine. The Gulkand makes this paan totally delectable. Unlike Shibuji’s paan these are not very sweet but have this very mild sweetness. The price range of the paan here is from Rs. 5 to Rs. 20.
3. Kalpataru Bhandar – College Square
This paan shop is located exactly behind College Square. The Kalpataru Paan Bhandar is more than 77 year old paan, it has been love by both the common people and also many celebrities. Well this particular paan shop is considered to be the best in the city, and the credit goes to its constant improvisation and innovation. They use ingredients which are very unique, variety of supari (Nehrupatiy, Chips, Keshrani, Milky, Icy), special chuna (lime- procured from snail shell dust) and atar (perfume) are some of them. The price range of the paans at the Kalpataru Paan Bhandar ranges from Rs. 5 to Rs. 1001. The paans at this shop are not too sweet, it does not use gulkand.
4. Chaurasiya Paan Shop – Salt Lake, Sector 1
Chaurasiya Paan shop is located in the Salt Lake, Sector 1. This shop has turned into a popular landmark for almost anyone from around that area knowing its location. This is not a very old shop, it’s around 15 years old but it has created a very good reputation among the people. The Chaurasiya Paan Shopis very popular for is variety of meetha paan, their specialities include singara paan, ice paan, chocolate paan and gundi paan. The speciaity of the paans here is the use of special Banarasi katha and Hira Moti masala.
5. Sattala Paan Shop – Burrabazar
The Sattala Paan Shop is a shop located beside the AC Market in Burrabazar area. Well Burrabazar area is one of the most popular commercial areas in the city, this area remains totally packed with people during any time of the day. And amidst such hustle and bustle, the Sattala Paan Shop serves more than 2,000 customers daily. The paans at this shop are large in size, so it is a bit difficult to eat it at one go. The other special parts about these large paans are the sprinkle of jelly and syrup. The Sattala Paan Shop serves their paan typically on a banana leaf. The price range of these paan is somewhere between Rupees. 5 – Rupees. 175.
6. Shivsankar Banarasi Paan Bhandar – Vivekananda road
The Shivsankar Banarasi Paan Bhandar is located at the Vivekananda road crossing. This shop is owned by Prasad Haldar and is over 70 year old. This paan shop is one of the most well-known paan shops in the city. The meetha masala paan is one of the high demand paan from this shop. Be it the businessmen or the office goers both come in to relish the delicious paan at this shop. The paans at this shop have a very peppery and minty flavour. They also use a special variety of “milky” and “ice cream” suparis. One other special variety is their “First Night paan”, this paan is wrapped in edible gold foil and also has original kesar the price of this paan is Rs. 250 which is totally worth.
Well as I said the city of joy shares a very special relation with the Paan. No wonder it is always in huge demand and even the smallest of paan shops have customers walking in at any time of the day. So next time you visit Kolkata, make sure you taste the delicious paans from the above popular Paan shops in Kolkata. I am sure you will have your own favourite one. Do you have any other shop to add to this list? Or do you have any experiences to share? Do share it with us as comments.
Featured Photo by paulhami
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