Marutirao Misalwale Hits The Spot



marutirao misal lower parel


Marutirao Misalwale is a tiny, no-frills restaurant serving Maharashtrian fare just round the corner from Deepak Talkies. Regulars rave about the numerous varieties of misal as well as the kothimbir vadi and shreekhand puri.

Marutirao Misalwale, Shop 3, Khatijabhai Mansion, P.B. Marg, Lower Parel, Mumbai 400 013. Phone: +91 91461 51313


We had just left Deepak Talkies, deep in discussion about the last scene of Belle de Jour, when my friend stopped dead in his tracks. I followed him into a narrow space, chuckling inwardly at the contrast between the unimaginative white tables and the sublime Yves Saint Laurent couture we had just witnessed on screen a few minutes ago. But one bite of Marutirao Misalwale’s misal and Paris was the farthest thing from my mind.

Here’s what I learnt from my 13-minute meal at the 33-year-old institution’s relatively new outlet in Lower Parel.

  1. Puneris have extremely high standards when it comes to misal pao. They can also spot an establishment serving potentially bombastic misal from a mile away. So if they say the misal is good, the misal is good.
  2. Every single item on Marutirao Misalwale’s menu consists of at least two of the following five words – misal, tari, pao, puri, vada. Add cheese, paneer, and dahi to the mix, and you’ve got lunch for days.
  3. The curry is called tari and Marutirao Misalwale, serves very many types of taris – cheese tari vada, dahi tari vada, tari vada puri, paneer tari vada pao. The tari is the soul of misal pao, and Maruti’s soul is just the right kind of hot and spicy.
  4. The servers at Marutirao Misalwale are not to be messed with. Like their Udipi counterparts, they won’t rattle off the day’s specials. If you struggle to read the menu in Marathi, and then ask sheepishly “Yeh tari kya hai?”, they will judge you. But they’ll still serve you.

Don’t tender exact change when you pay the bill at the counter. Not if you want a taste of the most magnificent mukhwaas called “Mastaani”. The tagline aptly reads ‘Tu cheez badi hai mast mast”. Touché.

Feature photo by Yogesh.unavane (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0], via Wikimedia Commons

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