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Udaipur: A leisurely day spent amidst thunderstorms

City Palace by Night - City of Lakes, Udaipur

City Palace by Night - City of Lakes, Udaipur

Udaipur – Rajasthan Road Trip – Day 5

Did you know the city palace is one of the highest and largest palaces in India, this palace was built on a 598-meter high plateau and is about 244 meters long and 30.4 meters high.

Udaipur has a romance of setting unmatched in Rajasthan and arguably in all India – snuggling beside tranquil Lake Pichola, with the purple ridges of the Aravalli Range stretching away in every direction.

Often referred to as the ‘Venice of the East’, the city of lakes Udaipur is located around azure water lakes and is hemmed in by lush green hills of Aravallis.

The famous Lake Palace, located in the middle of Lake Pichola is one of the most beautiful sights of Udaipur.

The city was founded in 1553 by Maharana Udai Singh II as the new capital of Mewar Kingdom. It is located in the fertile, circular Girwa Valley to the southwest of Nagda, which was the first capital of Mewar.

We were staying at the Jaiwana Haveli and had checked in last night itself.  It is a small, 24 Room, family-run hotel. It is 4 storied and has a rooftop Restaurant on the rooftop.

The hotel is in easy walking distance to all popular monuments, the Pichola lake, bazaars, gardens and restaurants. The host at the hotel, Yash Singh, is really pleasant and helpful and that made our short stay nicer.

Udaipur – Breakfast Onwards

How the day pan out between Amla Utpadak Sahakari Samiti, the Lunch at Park View Restaurant & Jaiwana Haveli

So Udaipur had a lazy start on Day 5. Hence, I woke up leisurely at 8 AM. Finally, I drifted to the restaurant around 8.30 for breakfast and that was the kick start of the day.

Shivendra was already there before me and halfway through the breakfast. Thereafter, he left for his planned meeting.

I lounged over the breakfast comprising of orange juice (Dabur Real), a masala omelette with onions, chillies and ginger, a bread basket and a pot of some excellently done coffee.

It sure was instant coffee – no prizes given for that one. Having said that the proportions were just right for the morning cuppa.

My Humble Breakfast of Toast & Masala Omelette at Jaiwana Haveli, Udaipur
My Humble Breakfast of Toast & Masala Omelette at Jaiwana Haveli, Udaipur

Personal Grooming Fix in Udaipur - A First

Hemant Hair Dressers, Udaipur - Further Onwards

Post breakfast, I strayed out on the unknown & uncharted streets with a primary aim, to find a professional who could give my shabby tresses a decent treatment. A decent haircut was the need.

After walking for about 30 minutes and visiting one busy and two shuttered down barber shops, I found a certain Hemant Hair Dressers.

I allowed them to give me a cut, shave and a head massage. All this came for a princely Rs. 80. Coming from Gurgaon, it was a financial shock on the pleasant side for me. This market rocked in this.

The city has fantastical palaces, temples, Havelis (traditional, ornately decorated residences) & countless narrow, crooked, timeless streets, add the human counterpoint to the city’s historical charms.

The Visit to Amla Utpadak Sahakari Samiti

Located at the village of Baghpura, this FPO or Food Processing Organisation processes Indian Gooseberry or Amla.

I knew all this because of my previous visits. But this one was to be cut short since I was headed Shivendra’s way.

Soon after I picked up Shivendra and two of his companions from his meeting at Udaipur venue. We drove to a unit called Amla Utpadak Sahakari Samiti.

The amla – indian gooseberry – cooperative that we visited in udaipur

Located at the village of Baghpura, this FPO or Food The Processing Organisation processes Indian Gooseberry. They churn out some really imaginative and tasty stuff like Churans, Murabaas, Pickles, Squashes, Just Juice and Mouth Fresheners.

The best of these which I thoroughly enjoyed was the Amla candy. The production of all products combined is about 150 tonnes every year.

Amla candy in making. Packets are being made as per orders.

Most of it is consumed within the States of Rajasthan, Gujarat & Delhi (though, I have never seen this stuff in Delhi or Gurgaon) I was told.

Lunch at Park View Restaurant, Panchsheel Marg, Udaipur, Rajasthan

Parkview Restaurant is perhaps the oldest multi cuisine restaurant of Udaipur

On the way back, we encountered one of the worst thunderstorms I have ever been in. Near blinding rain with heavy winds forced us to stop in our tracks.

We trudged on the state highway rather slowly and carefully. As we crossed half of our distance towards the centre of the city, the showers reduced in intensity.

However, the message was loud and clear. The pre monsoons had arrived. The gentlemen who escorted us to this brilliant place, Amla Utpadak Sahakari Samiti, were kind enough to offer us lunch.

They took us to one of the popular Restaurants on Panchsheel Marg Udaipur called the “Parkview Restaurant”. It turned out to be a super place. It is a must-visit when you visit the city.

This eatry is perhaps the oldest multi cuisine restaurant of the city which has been satisfying the taste buds of the people from across globe.

I didn’t expect it to, but it was brimming with people as we entered. Parkview Restaurant, our lunch place on the Panchsheel Marg, Udaipur. Our hosts told us that the restaurant was one of the oldest.

I could also estimate the same given the old time reflections that came from the dilapidating,  minimal decor and grey haired stewards who in my opinion aged with the restaurant.

However, it surely seemed popular with the locals and had a lots of families merrily munching on their food. We were not only hungry, but excited too by looking at the fervour in the restaurant.

Our order consisted of the following. It had mostly Rajasthani non-vegetarian dishes and a portion of vegetarian dish for a solo consumer of our smaller lunch group.

Chicken Handi. The thick masala gravy was nice but the chicken was overcooked so we had to go fishing for the disintegrated morsels of meat.

Chicken handi at parkview restaurant, udaipur

We were intrigued and already salivating by finding, Magaz, Gurde Kaupure on on the menu. Our excitement was shot down without remorse with a big – Not Available.

Eventually, we ordered Keema Kaleji Masala which turned out to be great, with just the right amount of spices paired with finely cooked meat, it offered the perfect bite.

Keema kaleji masala park view restaurant

Mixed vegetables was very nice as per feedback received by the solo vegetarian eating it. The Meatarians did not even look at the vegetables, let alone tasting it after its picture was taken.

Park view restaurant mixed vegetables

The tandoori roti, pickle, sirka pyaaz (pickled onions) and house green chutney at the restaurant were reasonably alright and went very well with the food.

The house chutney was a hit and was made with dhaniya, pudina, hari mirch and some sugar. Guess the Rajasthani adapted a bit of Gujarati touch too, given the amount of tourists from Gujarat making their way to Udaipur.

Day Ends - Back to Jaiwana Haveli, Udaipur

Our tryst with a really succulent & delicious chicken called Bhunjma Chicken. Emotionally impressed upon us by Yash Singh

There was no scope for a wholesome dinner back at the Jaiwana Haveli after that scrumptious lunch at Par View Restaurant, Panchsheel Marg.

Though, the inhouse speciality came as an offer to us. This is only presented to discerning guests, confided the owner of the Haveli, Yash Singh.

Our gracious host and owner of Jaiwana Haveli very emotionally, impressed this luscious dish upon us. It is a really succulent chicken called Bhunjma Chicken.

Bhunjma chicken at the jaiwana haveli, udaipur

It is made with tomatoes, chillies and has a distinct flavour of coriander. We were unable to say no to this one even though our stomachs were full after the Park View escapade.

Finally! To Sum It Up

Our tryst with a really succulent & delicious chicken called Bhunjma Chicken. Emotionally impressed upon us by Yash Singh

Bhunjma chicken at the jaiwana haveli, udaipur

This city has a romance of setting unmatched in Rajasthan and arguably in all India – snuggling beside tranquil Lake Pichola, with the purple ridges of the Aravalli Range stretching away in every direction.

Day 5 was a lovely day with several encounters including the amla candy artisans, the drive in the Rajasthani thunderstorms, the group lunch at Parkview restaurant in Udaipur, the tryst with Bhunjma.

The Entire Rajasthan Road Trip


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