Located at Bukhari commercial, Chupa Rustom is an upscale cafe reminiscent of the old Irani hotels of Karachi. It offers a modern take on traditional Desi food.
Chupa Rustom is a new place that has opened in Karachi at Bukhari Commercial. It’s designed as an ode to the old Irani cafes offering a glimpse of the Karachi that was, or in my case, the Karachi that I hear about from my parents and elders.
Currently, the café is only open for breakfast and dinner, not for lunch. I was invited by a friend for breakfast, and thought of writing about the experience here. Instead of going for individual orders, we decided to order a mix of everything to sample the menu.
Starting the breakfast meal at Chupa RustomThe meal started off with a basket of bakery items – biscuits, muffins and cake rusks. A nice touch to the western bread basket, and perfect for having with tea.The Kejriwal Eggs – Rs.595 + tax
This dish reminded me of eggs benedict but a spicy Desi version. The bottom is slices of thick toasted bread, which is then topped with onions, mushrooms, sunny-side up eggs and drizzled with a chillaise sauce. Felt the bread was a bit too thick, but otherwise loved all the vegetables and that delicious chillaise sauce.Karachi Eggsecutive – Rs.645 + tax
A standard Pakistani omelette with tomatoes, onions, coriander, and green chilies. The omelette tasted pretty good but what I loved in this dish was that tomato chutney on the side! Spicy and smoky, and just delicious with the potato wedges.Halwa Puri – Rs.745 + tax
Fluffy and crispy puri’s with aloo ki tarkari, halwa and I am not sure what it was in the 3rd bowl. I prefer paratha over puri’s so I had both the tarkari and the halwa with the former. The tarkari was decent, but the halwa was the star of the dish with its creamy and rich texture. It was suji halwa (according to the chef) liberally sprinkled with nuts.Nashta Bun – Rs.355 + tax
This was a classic fruit bun with maska (Desi makhan) and chai. Both the items were fresh and authentic, but not suited towards my tastebuds.Parathay – Lacha for Rs.175 + tax & Meetha for Rs.240 + tax
Though we ordered quite a few items, the first thing I tried was the paratha – the lacha and the meetha! Though on the pricier side these were oh so good, especially the meetha paratha. Crispy, crunchy and perfect for dipping in chai or having with halwa or kheer. If you order as a main versus a side, these come with cream, jam and chicken liver.
Lahore Lahore Hai – Rs.725 + tax
Traditional Punjabi murgh cholay with boiled eggs. Just took a bite of this, and thought it was made well But honestly, I preferred my eggs, halwa and paratha.
Rustoms Akari / Keema per Edu
Didn’t get to try either of the dishes, but since they finished in a few minutes I am going to assume they were good.
Doodh ki Botal – Rs.325 + tax
Served in an actual glass bottle (vintage Murree Brewery) this was a refreshing milk drink with lots of nuts, and flavoured with honey. Delicious but oh so filling. Best to order one bottle to share between 2 or even 3 people.
Doodh Patti – Rs.60 for ½ cup and Rs.120 for 1 cup
Unfortunately, this is where the café started experiencing teething issues. The chai was ordered when we were finishing up the breakfast, but served at least 30 minutes later. I had hoped to enjoy a bit of the remaining paratha and the bakery biscuits with the chai, but that didn’t happen.
Chupa Rustom is poised to be a fine new addition to Karachi’s eateries, provided that they can work on their service issues. It’s a bit on the pricier side for a café, and that too one which serves traditional Desi food. Even though the reason for the price variance is clear, the comparison to the chai hotel doodh ki botal and paratha is inevitable.
What I enjoyed was that there is a cohesive theme to the cafe, and it shows in the ambiance, the décor, the menu, and the staff. The theme is old-school, but with a modern take, and it is a breath of fresh air in the dining scene in Karachi.
Went to Chupa Rustom for breakfast a few days after this visit, and found the ambiance and food to be just as good. The staff remembered me from before, and after I told them about the delay in tea in my last experience, they made sure there were no issues this time. Appreciated the fact that they asked for feedback and implemented it. The bill was Rs.1650 for 2 mains, 2 chai’s and one extra meetha paratha, with leftovers.