Bademiya is an iconic kebab restaurant located in the bustling lanes of Colaba, Fort and Bandra. Started in the pre-independence year of 1946 by Haji Yasin Shaikh who got the name of “Bademiya” for his age and the bearded look.
The first stall of Bademiya was opened in the deserted lane of Colaba, which was a naval area back in the day, just behind the Taj Mahal Hotel.
It became famous for its seekh kebab, a recipe which is still a family secret.
Initially, when the stall was set up, it saw very few customers coming up. When the naval officers started coming, the word spread about a kebab stall that sells the best mutton seekh kebabs in that area.
As the vicinity started growing, so did the popularity of Bademiya Kebabs. In a few years, the stall got recognition and people from all around the city started flooding in at the stall.
Now, Bademiya is known not just in Mumbai, but people from abroad make it a “must visit” spot when they come to the city as tourists or even as visitors.
One of the most iconic highlights of this street food restaurant that people wait to experience is the way the food is served. If you visit Bademiya in the late hours in your car, you will experience the waiters asking you to pop the bonnet of the car, they insert a glass cold drink bottle under your bonnet that makes it into a make-shift dining table.
The food is served on your very own car and you get a one of a kind experience of dining on the streets of old Bombay.
77 years into the business, the third generation is now managing the legacy of the Kebab brand and has opened new restaurants in Fort and recently in Bandra.
The Bandra outlet is designed keeping in mind the brand’s rich history and attracting the western suburban crowd who found it difficult to visit the original outlet in Colaba. The interiors are inspired by Mughal-Turkish architecture with emphasis on the authentic taste of kebabs and the mughlai cuisine.
While Bademiya is predominantly known for its Kebabs, they also offer a wide variety of Tawa dishes, mughlai curries and biryani. The most sought after dishes that are a hit at the restaurant are Bhuna Gosht, Bheja Masala, Baida Roti, Chicken Tikka, Boti Kebabs and its succulent and fragrant Chicken Biryani.
The third-generation of the family are professionals in the industry with degrees in culinary and hotel management from renowned universities.
Bademiya is a close-knit family business that is cultural, humble and runs on the belief of spreading happiness and love through its food.
Principles of quality ingredients and staying true to their niche remains. Every ingredient, right from the raw mutton, every vegetable to even paneer and spices are sourced from regular suppliers on a daily basis to maintain the freshness. When one visits Bademiya, they never go back with a complaint of the food being stale or the taste changing over-time.
And maybe that’s the reason that Bademiya is the first choice of locals, tourists and even politicians and celebrities when it comes to kebabs and late night hunger pangs. While you may see youngsters, college students and professionals, you will also see old friends, family with children at the restaurants relishing the taste and the memories of old, golden times.
If you plan to visit Bademiya, you are sure to meet at least one family member at any of the outlets who are eager to speak to you and share the story of the brand and its legacy.
Courtesy : In Conversation with Saad Sheikh – Restaurateur, BADEMIYA, Bandra & Colaba