Paradise lost – Not yet

    Paradise lost 

    Paradise started off as a typical Irani cafe in Secundrabad in 1953. Next to the Paradise cinema. It served tea and snacks. Somewhere along they introduced the biryani and then there was no looking back. Everyone in Hyderabad is gaga over Paradise biryani. So I decided to check it out. And I went to their outlet in Hi Tech City.

    “Alas! It was disappointing.

    I was reminded me of Milton’s epic poem “Paradise lost”. In which Adam and Eve loose the plot by eating the forbidden fruit. When the world’s at your feet, why do you have to go looking for trouble. Here I guess one can loosely associate growth as the forbidden fruit for Paradise. Most successful restaurants do want to grow after some point. What direction do they take shapes up the future. The most difficult choice is to expand by yourself or take on franchisees. Both models have their own pluses and minuses. Paradise I guess, has taken the franchisee model route. And the results are quite obvious. Not to take anything away from them. The service in the new outlets is still spot on and the decor’s decent, in fact a shade better than the original one. But it’s the food, that doesn’t make the cut.

    Hyderabadi biryani is very specific in it’s characteristics. The mutton melts-in-your-mouth. And’s pink in colour. The pink colour comes from using saffron and not turmeric. The biryani’s subtly spiced and you get an explosion of saffron. And potle-ka-gosht or meat of young free-range sheep is used in the biryani. Alas, the Paradise biryani at the Hi Tech outlet had turmeric, not saffron. And was an instant put off. Overall the biryani was ok-ok. But not great. And definitely not up to the hype around Paradise. I was bitterly disappointed. This was my last hope of finding a classic Hyderbadi biryani in a commercial place.

    Paradise biryani

    Paradise biryani

    The original Paradise biryani

    I was so disappointed with the Paradise biryani. That I decided to write about it. You usually won’t find me writing negative posts or rubbishing stuff. But I wanted to highlight this one as the Paradise biryani’s supposedly the best thing going around. But then I decided to check out the original Paradise biryani outlet in Secundrabad before I wrote about it.

    The Paradise biryani at the original Secundrabad outlet blew me away. It was stunning. The mutton pieces just melted in the mouth. The mutton was pink in colour. The meat vs rice ratio was quite decent and it was minimally spiced. I wouldn’t call it the best biryani I’ve had. But Paradise biryani’s decently close to the authentic stuff I’ve had at Hyderabadi weddings.

    Paradise biryani

    Double ka meetha at Paradise biryani restaurant

    Details of the restaurant

    Address – Paradise circle, Secunderabad.

    Phone number – 040-6631 3721

    Timing – 11am to 11pm everyday

    Pricing – The mutton and chicken biryani both’re priced at Rs. 140 each. They also serve Chinese and other stuff, but I’m not sure if you should bother with that. The biryani comes with mirchi ka salan and raita.

    Website – http://paradisefoodcourt.com

    Paradise biryani Secunderabad

    Paradise biryani Secunderabad

    Location on Google Maps 


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    Happy hunting the Paradise biryani and chow-chow!

    Join the Conversation

    1. Puneetinder Kaur Sidhu says:

      I was recently treated to their mutton biryani in Delhi, brought back from Hyderabad. I, too, had wondered what the noise was all about: though grainy and flavourful, I found the meat tough to bite into, and there certainly was no saffron to it. Thank you for demystifying the reason. Next time, Paradise in Secunderabad, it will be!

    2. I love happy endings and this was one!

      Did you know Milton also wrote Paradise Regained? So you really did regain Paradise!

    3. Chowder Singh says: (Author)

      Oh ho! I didn’t know there was a Regained version too. Indeed as you said Shruti – Paradise regained.

    4. Chowder Singh says: (Author)

      Puneetinder. I felt the same when I had the Paradise biryani for the first time.

    5. vinayak Mahadevan says:

      Paradise Biryani tastes good when eaten in paradise hotel secunderabad but when taken to other cities it does not taste good. This is the same comment I got from my friends when I brought them some paradise biryani from hyderabad and I stay in hosur.

    6. vinayak Mahadevan says:

      If you happen to go to hyderabad there is a kamat hotel in saifabad where you get good breakfast. There is an item called MLA Pesarattu. Try that with alam chutney(Ginger Chutney). It is really awesome

    7. Chowder Singh says: (Author)

      Will look up Kamat in Saifabad, Vinayak. Thanks for the lead.