Ever craved for authentic Mumbai style street food?
Chatkaaz in Harris Park is perfect for those wanting to satiate their taste buds. The no frills restaurant has been popular amongst the Indian community in Sydney for many years. When I moved to Sydney my friends told me about the chole bhatura [chickpea flour curry served with crisp and fluffy deep fried bread) being the best at Chatkaaz. However, I didn’t visit until last year, when Chatkaaz expanded and refurbished with a complete Mumbai street food menu.
In simple terms, Mumbai street food are snacks sold by hawkers or small food stalls; they are so popular with the locals in India that even mid-size and five star eateries have included them in their menu. Undoubtedly, the street food is an integral to Mumbai’s gastronomic culture much like any other big metropolis where you’d find sandwiches, tacos, gelato, sausages and more.
Why you must visit Chatkaaz
It doesn’t matter what your ethnicity is, but if you love colour and the flavours of 4S [spicey, sour, salty and sweet] then you must step in this vibrant Indian eatery. The decor is reminiscent of Mumbai’s pop art and famous Bollywood movie posters and the seating style is rustic with distressed tables and chairs. The friendly and cheerful staff is an added bonus.
What’s on the Menu
From South Indian to Gujarati, Delhi’s famous flat breads to curries, their menu ropes in the best of recipes from different Indian states at very affordable prices. Some examples are missal pav, bhel puri, sev puri, aloo parantha, dosas and more.
We were at Chatkaaz for a weekend lunch and ordered the following
Sev puri (crispy bit size savoury topped with onions, potatoes, sweet-sour chutney)
Sev puri and mango lassi
Pav bhaji (mashed veggie curry served with buttery bread roll)
Missal pav (savoury curry served with bread roll)
Aloo parantha (Indian flat bread stuffed with potatoes served with yoghurt, pickel and chutney)
What we loved
Once seated, it’s great that there are small forms placed alongside the menu with a pen, so you can write what you’d like to eat. We loved the food as it was prepared exactly like we requested, which was not very spicy. The staff was quick to attend us, despite it being a busy day.
When we paid the bill at counter, the manager asked us about the experience, I casually mentioned that the orange juice wasn’t chilled enough but rest of it was great; he was quick to apologise and insisted that I take away another orange juice, which he did. So kudos to that!
What we didn’t like
That we were served all the food at once. Evidently, the table was cramped with all the plates, leaving us confused what to eat first, as rest of it just laid there getting cold. The restaurant was too busy, and the girl serving us eventually noticed their mistake; she came and apologised for rushing our order. We have enjoyed ourselves here many times, so I will count this as a one-off experience.
Some handy tips
1. They don’t take reservations, so I suggest that you reach at least 20-30 mins prior to get a good table, especially on weekends.
2. Parking is hard to get on weekends, so keep time aside or be prepared to walk.
3. Definitely recommended for a hearty lunch instead of dinner.
Meal for two: $30-50
Address: Shop 4-6/14-20 Station street East, Harris Park, NSW – 2150
Phone: 02-8677 0033, 0433668501
Monday – 05pm to 10pm
Tuesday to Friday – 10am to 10pm
Saturday-Sunday – 09am to 10pm
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