Of all the Edwin Lutyens’ architectural marvels in Delhi, Gole Market is one of those few that have managed to retain their old-worldly charm. Built in the 1920s by this British architect, the market gets its name from its octagon shape and structure and is famous among Delhiites for its scrumptious non-vegetarian eateries and quirky cultural shops.
The food junction
One of the better-known shops Galina, for instance, is famous for its chicken and mutton dishes that can be enjoyed at a price of Rs 60. "We have been around since 1960. Since our rates are very reasonable, the shop is a hit amongst youngsters who gather in large crowds after 6pm," says Gopal Krishna Dhir, Galina’s owner. He adds, "Butter chicken and tandoori chicken are the most popular dishes here."
For those with a sweet tooth, there is Karachi Halwa House, which has been around since 1938 and is known for its sev badam barfi, son halwa and, of course, karachi halwa. The shop opens at 8am every morning. "By evening, we are mostly sold out," says owner Sunil Khemani. The 55-year-old Bangla Sweet Shop is also popular with food lovers.
From saris to rare old coins, there’s a lot you can find here. One of the better-known shops is Bengal Saree Home that has a wonderful collection of Baluchari saris. "Delhiites have a taste for these saris. We have a range of cotton saris too," says owner Swapan Ganguly. At the Curios Centre, on the other hand, you can find coins dating back to the Asoka period. The traders buy and sell old coins and, if lucky, you may come across some rare finds for Rs 10. "People come and choose their own coins. It is the different shapes and sizes of these coins that amaze them," says SL Jain, a numismatist and the owner of Curios Centre.
What: Gole Market
Where: Bhagat Singh Marg, Shaheed Bhagat Singh Road
Best time to visit: Foodies gather after 4pm
Nearest Metro Station: Rajiv Chowk