Delhi is widely regarded as one of the top dining destinations in India, with a growing number of eclectic restaurants being added to the scene. Of course, North Indian cuisine is most prevalent. However, dishes from all over India and the world have become increasingly popular. Here's the pick of top restaurants in Delhi for all budgets and tastes.
Award-winning chef Manish Mehrotra reinvents traditional Indian cuisine with the use of global ingredients and techniques at this highly-acclaimed restaurant. Since it opened in 2009, Indian Accent has consistently been named the best restaurant in India. It's also frequently listed among the best restaurants in the world. In late 2017, Indian Accent relocated to its glamorous new home at The Lodhi hotel. Lunch is served from noon to 2:30 p.m. There are two sittings for dinner, starting at 7 p.m. and 9:45 p.m. Order the six-course Chef's Tasting menu for a complete dining experience.
Dum Pukht at the luxury ITC Maurya Hotel in Chanakyapuri provides a regal dining experience right out of the royal Mughal kitchens of India. The restaurant focuses on a 200-year-old Awadhi technique of slow cooking in sealed pots over a very low flame, known as dum. The dum biryani—a tantalizing combination of basmati rice, tender chunks of meat, and spices—is a highlight. Abundant white marble and glittering chandeliers create an opulent setting. Dinner is served nightly from 7 p.m. to 11:45 p.m. Do note that children aren't permitted.
The ITC Maura Hotel has another of Delhi's top fine dining restaurants, Bukhara, which is regularly placed among the world's best restaurants as well. Bukhara's consistency and longevity have earned it cult status, attracting the likes of former U.S. presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama. The restaurant's menu, rustic interiors, and open-kitchen have all remained the same for more than 40 years. Meat-lovers will savor the succulent kebabs and legs of lamb slow-roasted in a clay oven. The signature dal Bukhara (lentils) is outstanding too. Lunch is served from 12:30 p.m. to 2:45 p.m., and dinner from 7 p.m. to 11:45 p.m.
When a restaurant goes to the effort of getting fresh seafood from Mangalore in Karnataka every day, you know it's going to be special. Sana-di-ge concentrates on authentic coastal cuisine from the western Indian states of Karnataka, Kerala, Goa, and Maharashtra. The food is prepared according to family recipes that have been handed down over generations. In case you're wondering, Sana-di-ge means a brass lamp in the Dravidian Tulu language. The restaurant is located in Chanakyapuri's diplomatic enclave. It's open for lunch from noon to 3:30 p.m. and dinner from 6:30 p.m. to 11:30 p.m.
Masala House is one of the top places to eat in Sundar Nagar. It's among the recent influx of trendy restaurants that have transformed this refined central neighborhood into an increasingly cool destination for eating and shopping. The menu features modern Indian cuisine with dishes from all over India but predominantly North India, Kerala, and the Chettinad region of Tamil Nadu. Lunch is served from noon to 5 p.m. and dinner from 6:30 p.m. to 11:30 p.m. Head there after sightseeing at nearby Purana Qila and Humayun’s Tomb.
Feeling gluttonous and want to consume the most gigantic thali (platter) in Delhi? You'll find it at upmarket Ardor 2.1 in Connaught Place. Choose from the humongous 56-inch Modi Ji Bahubali Thali with 32 dishes, or the United India Thali with dishes from all 28 Indian states. Both vegetarian and non-vegetarian options are offered. The thalis are available from noon to 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. until midnight. Don't go alone because there's way too much food for one person! Plus, unlimited refills are possible.
Join the crowd in filling up on inexpensive South Indian fare at Saravana Bhavan in Connaught Place or Janpath. This renowned no-frills vegetarian restaurant chain from Chennai in Tamil Nadu makes what's possibly the crispiest and tastiest rava masala dosa in Delhi. Not surprisingly, people line up on the sidewalk for a table, with an hour wait common during peak lunch and dinner times. The restaurant is open daily from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Unlike what its name suggests, the United Coffee House is one of Delhi's finest vintage restaurants rather than a coffee shop. It has been in Connaught Place for more than 75 years, starting as a local meeting place and evolving into a classy restaurant with a menu as diverse as its patrons. Diners are taken on a culinary voyage through each era following the restaurant's inception. The broad menu incorporates a tempting array of British, European, American, regional Indian, and modern Asian dishes. There's Indian street food, classic high tea, and great coffee too! Breakfast is served from 9:30 a.m. to noon and main meals from noon to midnight.
This iconic Delhi restaurant on Pandara Road was originally a modest dhaba (roadside eatery) when it opened in 1959. It flourished in providing lunch to government office workers after the owner perfected making butter chicken—and the dish still ranks among the best butter chicken in Delhi. The restaurant's daily lunch buffet, from noon until 4 p.m., is ideal for sampling a range of North Indian dishes. The kebabs are popular as well. Order a kebab platter for a mix of different ones. There's also a vegetarian-only Gulati restaurant next door, founded in 1997. Both stay open until midnight.
At Parikrama Revolving Restaurant, enjoy your meal while looking out across the city skyline from the 24th floor. The restaurant completes one revolution in 90 minutes, which is long enough for a leisurely lunch. You'll be able to spot famous monuments such as the Red Fort and Jama Masjid, as well as the President's residence Rashtrapati Bhavan. North Indian, Asian and Continental cuisine is served daily from 12:30 p.m. to 11 p.m.
Open all through the night so you'll never go hungry, Yellow Brick Road at the Taj Ambassador Hotel in Khan Market has a welcoming homely vibe created with old advertising posters and country-style furniture. It's regarded as one of the best multi-cuisine restaurants in Delhi, so you're sure to get some satisfying Indian and international comfort food, including all-day breakfasts.
Settle into Olive Bar and Kitchen's gorgeous leafy courtyard for the afternoon on Sunday and feast on an endless spread of mouthwatering Mediterranean food, accompanied by unlimited alcohol, including sparkling wine. The restaurant is housed in a converted Mughal mansion close to Qutab Minar in South Delhi. It's open daily from 12:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m., for those not attending Sunday brunch. A limited menu is served between 3:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
Farzi Cafe aims to make fine dining fashionable and fun for a hip younger crowd. Its modern Indian cuisine is based on the concept of molecular gastronomy, with the restaurant creating illusions with food ("farzi" means illusionary in Urdu). Expect a cutting-edge menu, prices that are a bit lower than standard, and a casual yet contemporary space with a substantial island bar. The restaurant is open from noon to 1 a.m. daily. There are regular live music performances from 9 p.m. onward.
Love the groovy decor at Plum by Bent Chair? You can buy it! This chic new retail restaurant combines food and shopping at the new Aerocity hospitality precinct adjacent to Delhi airport. It's possibly India's most Instagrammable restaurant. You can take home everything in sight, from the cutlery to the wall art. So, leave some space in your suitcase before flying out! The gourmet pan-Asian cuisine and creative cocktails receive plenty of praise as well. Opening hours are noon to 1 a.m. daily.
Dine at this innovative and inspirational restaurant in Karol Bagh, and you'll be helping support underprivileged young people to receive training in the hospitality sector. The youth that work there were rescued from the streets of Delhi by several Non-Government Organizations. Service is excellent, and the mixed Indian, continental, and Chinese cuisine is delicious. The restaurant is open daily from 11:30 a.m. to midnight.