Mumbai, the “City Of Dreams” as they call it, has numerous gems hidden in its streets and pathways. Among those treasures, we have several restaurants that have been given an iconic tag for various reasons. They may have a rich historical context to Mumbai’s charm, or they might be known for their ambiance that attracts the souls of many bystanders on Mumbai’s sidewalks.
Do you want to be a part of Mumbai’s legendary gastronomical side? Then read our article on some of the iconic restaurants in Mumbai you should not miss.
Once you stop in Mumbai, you’re surely going to want something to eat after that long journey. And if your hotel happens to be in Colaba, then you’re in luck because you’ve Leopold Cafe to satisfy your hunger pangs. This establishment reeks with history. It was founded way back in 1871 when a group of Iranis decided to set up a business in Mumbai. Leopold Cafe started initially as a cooking oil store and then a pharmacy before becoming a full-fledged bar and restaurant.
To this day you’ll still see locals and tourists alike visiting the warm-colored halls of Leopold Cafe. The atmosphere is so vibrant yet relaxing, that you’ll never know how time passes by. Whether you want to hang out with friends or feel like having a day to yourself, this cafe caters to both kinds. After you’re done with your time at the cafe, you can head over to Marine Drive and enjoy the sunset.
The menu has a variety of delicacies. Whether you fancy some Chinese, Italian, or Indian, Leopold will cater to any type of taste bud. While you enjoy the great vibe that fills this place, you can feast on some Beef Chili, Chocolate Ecstasy, and Chicken Poppers. The Leopold special soup is also a favorite among the locals.
Side Note: Leopold Cafe was one of the first targets of the 26/11 Mumbai terrorist attacks. Some of the bullet marks are still preserved, making it a symbol of our defense’s bravado against terrorism.
Location: Police Station, Shahid Bhagat Singh Road, Colaba Causeway, near Colaba
Price: INR 2,000 for two people
Timings: 7:30 am - 12:00 am
Also read: 5 Of The Best Budget Hotels In Mumbai
Mumbai’s streets are filled with establishments having tiny pockets of history within them. And one such establishment that has stood the test of time is Mumbai’s most-renowned Gaylord. Situated in Churchgate, this restaurant, decked with chalk-white walls and antiques, hold a special place in many Mumbaikar’s hearts. If you happen to stay in Mumbai for a little longer, then you should definitely not miss this place.
The genesis of this cafe goes way back in 1955 when two Delhi-schooled food entrepreneurs, Pishori Lal Lamba and Igbal Ghai, thought of expanding their food ventures in Mumbai. Since they already had a successful chain of restaurants in Delhi called Kwality, they felt they could take up Gaylord.
As you enter the main gate, you’re welcomed with an arched window that connects the vast hall of Gaylord. Its iron furniture molded in vintage design is a vital ingredient of the restaurant’s style and class. It’ll indeed take you down a heavy nostalgia trip once you’re seated in their arrangement. The elegance of the place was so charming that even Bollywood stars of the yesteryears couldn't resist it. Dilip Kumar, Raj Kapoor, Lata Mangeshkar, Baldev Raj Chopra, and Asha Bhosle were regular visitors of this restaurant. Also, Bollywood’s iconic music director duo Shankar-Jaikishan had reserved a table for themselves to enjoy their daily cup of evening chai.
If you’re confused about what to eat from their vast array of dishes on their menu, you can choose their Chicken Ala Kiev, Waldorf Salad, and Paneer Tikka as their restaurant’s top hits. Need something to tingle your sweet taste buds after a scrumptious meal? Head over to their bakery and feast on some fluffy butter croissants, tea cakes, almond cakes, and macaroons.
Location: Mayfair Building, Veer Nariman Road, Churchgate
Price: INR 1,800 for two people
Timings: 9:30 am - 11:30 pm
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Cafe Mondegar definitely requires a spot on our 10 iconic restaurants in Mumbai list. This restaurant's interiors are a work of art, literally. Its walls were brought to life by the great Mario Miranda, who painted beautiful murals on them. Once you enter the restaurant, you’ll find two sets of murals on its plain walls: one depicting how life in Mumbai is and the other portraying the electric atmosphere created by the patrons in the restaurant.
Colloquially known as Mondy’s, this establishment was founded in 1932 by a group of Iranians. The place back then served as a quaint cafe, before it was converted to a restaurant in the mid-nineties. Also, it was the first restaurant to ever have a jukebox in Mumbai and it’s still present in one of Cafe Mondegar’s corners.
When it comes to the food, Mondy’s will certainly not disappoint. For the breakfast junkies, the fluffy omelet with a piping hot cup of coffee is the favorite combination among the fan favorites. The beef chili and bacon-wrapped prawns are also to yearn for. If you feel like having a good old-fashioned burger, then try out Mondy’s special steak cheeseburger.
Location: 5A, Metro House, Shaheed Bhagat Singh Road, Colaba
Price: INR 1,300 for two people
Timings: 8:00 am - 11:30 pm
This is one of the top-tier places in Mumbai to have a hearty South Indian breakfast in. A taste of their filtered coffee warming down your throat on a cold winter morning will directly transport you to the streets of Chennai. And for this very reason, you’ll see a queue of caffeine addicts standing in line before the restaurant opens its doors.
While the air is filled with the smell of soothing coffee, this 81-year old restaurant serves the finest Butter Idlis, Rasam, Upma Podi, Medu Vada, and Dahi Misal. Along with that, they prepare a wide range of dosas such as Neer Dosa, Pesarattu Dosa, and Ragi Masala Dosa to name a few. If you ever wondered what Rajnikanth must’ve eaten in his formative years in the South, then drop into Cafe Madras.
Location: No. 391/B, Ground Floor, Kamakshi Building, Bhaudaji Road, Kings Circle, Matunga
Price: INR 350 for two people
Timings: 7:00 am - 2:45 pm, 4:00 pm - 10:00 pm. (Closed on Mondays)
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Mumbai is blessed to have many Iranian restaurants surrounding its streets and Britannia & CO happens to be among them. This restaurant, which is said to be around 90+ years old, still caters to hungry diners daily.
Since it was built in 1923, you can expect the ambiance to have some colonial tinge to it. Its walls are decked with portraits of prominent Indian historical figures and wall clocks. Falling from its roofs, you'll see a couple of chandeliers placed in the square of 4 ceiling fans spinning. And its Bentwood chairs are still known to remain there since the opening of the restaurant.
Many regulars who visit the place compliment the Mutton Berry Pulao. It is said that the berries are brought all the way from Iran to add that special tanginess to the rice. As a result, this dish is the star runner of this restaurant. Apart from the pulao, you can dive into a spread of Salli Boti, Brown Rice, Dhanshak, and finish with a glass of Raspberry Soda.
Location: Wakefield House, 16, 11, Sport Rd, opp. New Custom House, Ballard Estate, Fort
Price: INR 1,000 for two people
Timings: 12:00 pm - 4:00 pm on weekdays, Saturdays: 12:00 pm - 10:00 pm. (Closed on Sundays)
Stadium was established in 1944, which is 3 years before India’s independence from the British Raj. Ever since then, the restaurant has still been going strong, proving their best form of art through their cooking. This little restaurant is situated a distance away from Churchgate Station and caters to hungry diners who have just gotten off from work.
Keema Ghotala, Chicken Liver Fry, Mutton Masala, Cutlet Gravy are some of the Stadium’s star batters, which will keep you coming back for more. If you want to relish something sweet as you head out, bite into a slice of their spongy Mawa Cake.
Location: Railway Station, Stadium, 76, Veer Nariman Road, near Churchgate
Price: INR 500 for two people
Timings: 8:00 am - 11:00 pm
Also read: 10 Best Bars And Pubs In Mumbai
If you want another iconic restaurant to taste the flavors of South India, then visit A Ramanayak. A cook that went by the name of A Ramanayak had humble beginnings in Mumbai when he started cooking in Santacruz. After that, he started his own restaurant that he christened as A Ramanayak Udipi Shri Krishna Boarding in 1942. Ever since then, the restaurant hasn't looked back.
The star attraction of this restaurant is the unlimited thali that is served on a banana leaf. Along with the generous servings of rice, you get an ample amount of dal, rasam, curds, and a plethora of mixed vegetable bhajis at the side. After having this meal, you’re going to be knocked out flat once you reach home.
Location: 1st Floor Lakhamsi Nappu Road, Near Matunga Central Railway Station, Matunga
Price: INR 500 for two people
Timings: 11:00 am - 11:00 pm
If you love relishing some non-vegetarian dishes in a place that reminds you of Bombay in the 90s, then visit Cafe Churchill. This restaurant, named after the former British Prime Minister, is owned by a Parsi couple. They had set up somewhere in the 90s, and have been continually serving customers their delicious goodies.
Unlike many restaurants mentioned in this list, Cafe Churchill has just around 6 tables on its premises. Once you find your seat on one of them, try their Beef Teriyaki, Chicken Cordon Bleu, Hungarian Goulash, Churchill's Favorite Salad, and Grilled Chicken Sandwich. If you still have some space in your tummy after relishing all of that, then indulge in some Tiramisu, Blueberry Cheese Cake, and Banoffee Pie.
Location: East-West Court Building, Colaba Causeway, Apollo Bandar, Colaba
Price: INR 400 for two people
Timings: 11:00 am - 11:00 pm
Also read: Mumbai Travel Guide
This quaint eatery gives out a sophisticated vibe as soon as you enter. Its walls look rustic, but the way it has been revamped will make you feel as if the structure was just created in a few years. And that is what makes this dine-in legendary, and iconic.
This place allows you to rest quietly in its serene ambiance. You won’t hear much of the chaos that’s happening on Mumbai’s streets, nor will you have a bustling environment in the restaurant. Select something soothing from their wide range of homemade teas, coffees, and aromatic baked treats.
Location: 10, Rope Walk Ln, Kala Ghoda, Fort
Price: INR 1,000 for two people
Timings: 8:00 am - 12:00 am
This iconic restaurant was set up in 1945 and is still revered for its simplicity. Much of that is seen in their ambiance - no fancy chandeliers or complex furniture. They believe in “less is more” and have always let their food do the talking.
Their Gujrathi food is their main strength. Having authentic Gujarati food in addition to the many Iranian and South Indian restaurants is a breath of fresh air. If you ever get a chance to visit this place, taste their Gujju Thali, Biscuit Bhakri, Puranpoli, Undhiyu, and Mango Dessert.
Location: Building No. 31, Dadiseth Agyari Lane, Marine Lines East, Oval Wadi, Gaiwadi, Kalbadevi
Price: INR 1,300 for two people
Timings: Mondays: 11:30 am - 3:30 pm, Tuesdays - Sundays: 11:30 am - 3:30 pm and 7:00 pm - 10:30 pm
These are some of the most iconic restaurants in Mumbai that serve dishes from a variety of platters. You wouldn’t be disappointed walking into any of the cafes and restaurants as each of them has its own specialty and something to satisfy your tastebuds. Whether you’re a local wanting to explore the best of gastronomical Mumbai or a foodie who likes exploring destinations for their food, your tastebuds are surely in for a treat when you decide to do some restaurant hopping. Just make sure you start off on an empty stomach!
What Is Best In Leopold Cafe?
From Chinese to Italian, Leopold caters to a plethora of cuisines. But, the more famous ones are Beef Chili, Chocolate Ecstasy, Chicken Poppers, and The Leopold Special Soup.
What Language Is Spoken In Mumbai?
Marathi is widely spoken in this city. Even Hindi and English are some other languages that many locals converse in as well.
What Are Some Famous Iconic Restaurants In Mumbai?
Here are our top 10 iconic restaurants in Mumbai you should definitely check out:
Which Are The Must Order Dishes At Gaylord?
Chicken Ala Kiev, Waldorf Salad, and Paneer Tikka are some famous main courses of Gaylord. You can also check out their bakery that prepares fluffy butter croissants, tea cakes, almond cakes, and macaroons
How Far Is Madras Café From Matunga Station?
Cafe Madras is about 15 minutes away from Matunga Station and about 30 minutes away from Matunga Road.
What Parts Of Mumbai Have The Most Famous Cafés?
South Mumbai and Navi Mumbai are wwell-known for their extensive selection of cafés and coffee houses.
What Is The Difference Between A Café And A Coffee Shop?
If the establishment is focused towards their coffee more than anything else, it is a coffee house. On the other hand, a café is an establishment with a diverse menu that focuses on food just as much as it does on the coffee.