Everytime I am in Guwahati, I make sure I visit this restaurant located in the heart of the city at Krishna Market, Ganeshguri called Gam’s Delicacy. A restaurant that is always lively and has kept the tradition of authentic Assamese cuisines alive. Name any Assamese dish you want, you will not miss it on the menu. I visited the restaurant for the first time during the beginning of 2010 when I was in Guwahati for my holidays. Then this year when I was back home again, I went twice just to suffice myself and perhaps save myself from missing all the tasty dishes while I am away from home.
The restaurant increases your appetite by serving a so-called Axomiya clear soup made of herbs and spices that mostly include ginger, black pepper and salt and as soon as you have the soup you realise that hunger has struck you at its best and there is no running away from the yummy dishes. Their menu includes everything; yes I mean every Assamese dish that I have ever heard from my Aita(grandmother) or Ma. You just need to name it and it will be there in front of you.
Starting from Vegetarian Assamese thali to non- veg dishes like Fish fry (rohu, sitol, magur, ari etc); Steamed Pork, Pork dry fry, Grilled pork, various Pork curry dishes; various Duck curry dishes or Chicken or Mutton for that matter and many more. I visited recently for my farewell dinner (before I was leaving India this time) with my family on the 9th February 2011. I must say even though it was a weekday, the restaurant was pretty packed on that night. Hopefully, we didn’t have to wait to get a table unlike Sunday afternoons. We ordered vegetarian thalis for all which usually includes joha saul, aloo pitika( mashed potato), mati(urad) dali, masoor(red lentils) dali, omita(papaya) khar and a form of vegetable curry and stir fry vegetables (usually aloo bean or aloo lesera). They usually have enough lemon pieces ready on the tables with pickles and a chutney, that we often call as the Delicacy chutney. Then my cousin and my brother insisted on ordering pork fry, which looked really tasty, while me and my other cousin ordered sesame chicken curry. I would like to pause here and mention that the sesame chicken curry is a must try in this restaurant. It has its unusual taste and the perfect blend of sesame and other spices making it very delicious. I also ordered rohu fish fry to go with my thali. The perfectly fried fish always brings water to my mouth and even now while I am writing. Ma- Deuta (parents) ordered tenga-masor jool (sour-fish curry) which looks like it’s been made with a lot of effort that you just cannot find any fault in the cooking. My khura-khuri’s(uncle-aunt’s) favourite has been the duck curry with potato. While I wanted to try the banana-flower with chicken curry, I thought I was already full and it was enough for the night and next time I go, I would make sure I tried that.
No Chinese or Punjabi restaurant in Guwahati can match the quality or quantity of Delicacy. Delicacy is the epitome of good, healthy and tasty food. They give sufficient quantity of food and you can ask for second-third helpings of rice or dal. One thing I have often observed only in Delicacy is that their meats are often well done and properly cooked whether it’s the chicken, pork or mutton. And you don’t have to wait for long hours waiting for your food to arrive nor do they ever serve cold food. It takes at the max 30 minutes, during rush hours and you are ready to go at the food. And another thing worth mentioning is that they use traditional Assamese utensils like plates and glasses made of kaah-pitol (brass). The prices are reasonable too. I have also seen people coming from far away places just to eat in Delicacy. My Jethai (aunt, for instance), comes all the way from Nagaon to eat here. Once you visit Delicacy, I can bet you will insist on going back not only because of the food but also because of the good service. The service people have always served us with a smile. I appreciate the way they deal throughout the day in a busy restaurant and still keep the smile intact and making sure they give attention to every detail to what a customer wants or any replacement if a customer isn’t happy with anything. I saw them happily replace a particular fish-piece that a kid did not want to have, in his curry.
Lastly, I should not forget mention their special sweet dish that comes complementary with their thalis. It’s usually Payas (rice and milk porridge with camphor and sugar) which really makes your visit to Delicacy sweet and memorable. My experience definitely was and I am sure always will be. Wait, will an Assamese dinner be ever complete without tamul-paan on a xorai? Yes, before you leave they do not let you come out of the indulgence until they serve tamul-paan on a xorai. I have been to many restaurants, roadside stalls, food marts or joints in Guwahati; India, Malaysia or Australia but still Delicacy ranks number-one in my heart of pleasure. So I will suggest all the readers to go and treat yourself to this amazing restaurant in Guwahati. Until then keep eating good and healthy.
Contribution and Photography by Kaushika Hazarika
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