Balwant Singh’s Eating House (since 1926) – The Oldest Punjabi Dhaba in The City of Joy

Quote on Chai (tea) at Balwant Singh's Eating House (Kolkata, India)

Doodh Cola and Lassi – our reason to visit (twice) Balwant Singh’s Eating House (almost 100 years old and having more than 23,000 Google reviews) in the evening hours, situated just beside Gurdwara Sant Kutiya at Bhowanipore, Kolkata.

A very prime location. Lots of rush including parked vehicles outside the restaurant. Almost like a party. The vibe is good.

What is Doodh Cola? – The million-dollar question.

Dudh Cola is a mixture of milk, coke, and lots of ice.

Unbelievable blending and the price – Rs.150 a liter.

How was Doodh Cola in taste?

It’s okay for a single try to know what is Doodh Cola. It’s a must-taste item they are known for. Blissful, Refreshing – in short.

After the refreshing drink, we met Manish Singh – The current owner of Balwant Singh’s Eating house.

Upon query this is what he narrated:

Balwant Singh was my grandfather. He was originally from Ropar (Punjab).

Our ancestors were connected with India’s freedom movement. During those days this place was a meeting place (adda) of Gadar Party. Here only they used to sit and talk and make plans. And they prepare food also.

Later this place was commercialized and in the year 1926, it was converted into a restaurant.

Timings: 5 am till 11 pm (due to Covid restrictions, otherwise, 24 hours open / 7 days in a week – USP).

Our famous is tea which we prepare on steam if not flames. There is a different method of making.

If you stand for 5 minutes, I will tell you how this special famous tea is made.

First, we put dust tea into a cloth and pour very little hot water to prepare liquor. Then we add pure milk and sugar and start blending. Then we place the mixture inside a container having boiling water. We boil the mixture for 3-4 minutes and then serve it to the customers.

It is very light in drinking. Nice foamy and never develop acidity.

It is prepared as per the customer’s request such as without sugar, less/more sugar, strong, light, etc.

This steam tea was developed by our ancestors only and continues to date.

And the cost of the tea is – Rs. 20 & Rs. 30. If you want saffron, then double the price.

Please note: The tea is served to customers in an earthen clay pot which makes it even tastier.

Other than tea, we make Doodh Cola also – again started by our ancestors.

And we also have pure authentic North-Indian vegetarian cuisines such as varieties of Naan, Kulcha, Paratha, Roti, Pulao, Fried Rice, Biryani, Kachori, Nimki, Samosa, Pakoda, Chhole Bhatture, Sandwich, Imriti, Jalebi, Gulab Jamun, Kalakand, Gajar ka Halwa, Kulfi, Doodh Cola, Lassi, Thandai, Chai, Kesar Milk, Milk Shake, Chaat, Maggi, Soup, Momos, Manchurian, Noodles, etc., etc. and Weekend Special such as Mushroom Spinach Tikka, Paneer Haryali Tikka, Paneer Achari Tikka

Nearest Metro Station: Rabindra Sadan (5 minutes walking distance)

This restaurant is visited by many celebrities such as K. L. Saigal, Prithviraj Kapoor, Kapil Dev, Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Suresh Raina, Anil Kapoor, Kareena Kapoor, and many singers as well.

Actually, this road goes straight to Kalighat Kali temple, thus visitors stop here.

And what about foreigners visiting? – I question.

Yes, foreigners also visit especially the Japanese who do research on tea. They watch the method of making steam tea and film it as well.

Fantastic description. Thank you very much, Manish – said I. Thank you for the Punjabi hospitality.

I would love to take another visit because I haven’t tasted steam Kesar Chai (tea) yet – said I.

In short, Iconic restaurant/Dhaba. Serving for almost a century. Don’t miss it when you visit Kolkata.