Khiva – Discovery of gourmets!

The end of confession is to tell the truth to and for oneself! So here I am, putting down my confession, when it comes to food, I’ve had pretty much of it, liked some bits of it but I have always honored Uzbek cuisine. Yes, you read it right! Uzbek cuisine, and in this post I am going share my love of Uzbek food, Bukhara, if you delve deeper.


Khiva, the award winning restaurant, which first started its operations in Bombay, is now open to the IT city! Where? Phoenix market city – Pune!
I know I am pretty late in sharing this post and hence I also know that most of you know about the tagline associated with Khiva! Don’t you? Never mind, I’ll share it again!

There are many interesting legends that tell about the origin of Khiva. Allegedly, the city grew around the well Hewvakh, with tasty and cool water. The well was dug by the order of Shem, the elder son of Biblical Noah. Today one can see this well in the old part of Khiva, Itchan-Kala. And hence the story of the well as narrated by locals unfolds as travelers passing from this town after drinking water exclaimed-Khey Vakh i.e. what a pleasure! Trust me they live up to it at the restaurant! Indeed, What a pleasure! Also, such pleasures come at a price, so be prepared to splurge as the prices are pretty steep!

The Food – It’s outstanding!

Just the names of appetizing Bukhara food makes one salivate. Plov, manti, shurpa, shashlik, samsa, lagman have such wonderful aroma that one can’t resist the temptation to indulge without care.

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And that’s exactly how I felt at the first sight of Chandni kebab and the Muttar aur Cheese ka tikka (Vegetarian) which was stuffed with aged, oozing cheese and walnuts. Delicious would be an understatement for the Muttar aur Cheese ka Tikka. The Chandni kebab on the other hand is a cream-based appetizer which unlike other starters is heavy but taste-wise it’s just above average.

Yakhni Shorba

I paired these with the subtle and aromatic Yakhni Shorba which is a traditional Bukhara style broth or soup cooked with goat‘s meat, saffron (If I am not wrong) and yoghurt, mildly spiced with whole spices and all I could do, was ask for more! It’s a must have.

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Barra kebab Lazeez

The Chakori murgh and Barra kebab lazeez came in only to surprise me because I never knew that Uzbek food has imbibed some culinary traditions of Turkic, Kazakh, Mongolian and other neighboring nations, settled on the territory of Central Asia. I did like them but don’t have much to add, also tried the Peshawari tikka which was soft, creamy and tad salty for me to appreciate it further.

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When the starters itself are so filling you can only expect richer and varied mains and that night, Khiva did not disappoint! For the hardcore non vegetarian freak in me, Khiva is paradise. Why am I saying this? You will know! Read on.

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The Dal Khiva which had been simmered for about 9 tedious hours and then placed on my table, that look, that initial look said it all, topped with desi ghee and cream which makes it to my top 10 dals of the year! It only makes me respect the chefs even more.


What followed was love! Nalli ka Salan – The real knock-out of the evening! The chef, again – Ingenious! What a stellar main. That’s all I needed for the evening and the smile on my face never faded after I tried that dish. Bone marrow and meat come together to give you a flavorful curry which puts you in a food coma!


The Mutton Dum Biryani – I am the kind of a guy, who goes out for a burger but eats biryani instead, and biryani for me is always dum biryani and of course it has to be either beef or mutton! In my books there is no chicken biryani. But Khiva served it, I tried, it was decent and then I moved to mutton dum biryani, rather I called for it! Mutton dum biryani served with mirch ka salan (I don’t know why. It wasn’t hyderabadi biryani for sure) and burhani raita. One of the better versions of the legendary dum biryani I’ve had of late with the perfect ratio of masala and meat to rice.

Desserts – The discovery for all gourmets!


What was served – Rasmalai, Baked Anjeer Halwa, Lychee ki Tehree out of which only Lychee ki tehree is memorable! The others of course tasted good but there is nothing fancy about them unlike the lychee ki tehree which was sublime! Coarsely ground milk and rice pudding with litchi chunks, Boy! They take you somewhere else! Where? Well let me get back and then I’ll update you! Till then – Khey Vakh!

Picture Credits – Swati Singh
{The bloggers table was hosted by Khiva.}

<a href=”; title=”View Menu, Reviews, Photos & Information about Khiva, Viman Nagar and other Restaurants in Pune” target=”_blank”><img alt=”Khiva Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info – Zomato”

3 Comments Add yours

  1. Abhay says:

    I must tell you Khiva has some of the mouth watering dishes on the menu. really authentic and Flavorful. I had tried this place in Mumbai and loved it. Now I’m excited to try this one too. Thanks Saquib for such a beautiful post.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks a bunch for the appreciation mate. You should definitely try it, and If I may suggest, try their Nalli ka salan. It’s Orgasmic 😉


  2. Thank you Abhay 🙂


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