The unchanging indelicacy.
[Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi]
Triveni Tea Terrace in central Delhi’s Mandi House is known for its delicious shami kebab and carrot cake. Another famous item in the menu – Tasty Toast – is believed to date from the time when this landmark canteen was founded in the 1960s.
As it happens, Tasty Toast is as unimaginative as its name.
A grilled toast stuffed with oily potatoes, it is an inferior version of the legendary Bombay Sandwich (The Delhi Walla wrote about it here). There is also a more expensive variety filled with cheese. That too is no better.
You must not, however, judge the entire canteen with this toast. The Terrace reopened with a revamped look in early 2015 (I wrote about that here), and the new management took pains to introduce some new dishes – poha is easily the best of the lot. But the management did not discard the old items. After all, many of the canteen’s loyal customers identify Triveni Tea Terrace with familiar snacks such as Tasty Toast.
And those among us who have no understanding of Triveni’s place in Delhi’s cultural life must learn to see this sandwich as a heritage to be celebrated for its endurance. Tasty Toast was there when our parents were courting their college-time crushes in the Terrace. It was there when we followed in their footsteps.
This Terrace used to be a haunt of legendary artists such as MF Husain. Tasty Toast must had been a part of their lives, too.
So, for our city’s sake, please don’t ever drop Tasty Toast from the Triveni menu. Also, please don’t make it taste better. Let it always remain the same.
Where Triveni Tea Terrace, Triveni Kala Sangam, Tansen Marg Nearest Metro Station Mandi House Time 11 am to 5 pm
Take it or leave it