The picturesque town of McLeod Ganj is surely one of the most breathtaking places in the hills of Himachal Pradesh. The abode of spiritual leader, The Dalai Lama, McLeod Ganj town’s scenic beauty, the simplicity of its people, will definitely touch your heart. Also known as ‘Little Lhasa’ or ‘Dhasa’ due to a large number of Tibetans who live here, Mc Leod Ganj is a town frequented by both domestic and foreign visitors. This serene suburb has a number of cafes which offers so much on their platter; we give you the list of the best food available there, to make your travel experience easier!
Named after the daughter of the owner, Woeser Bakery is the place that will definitely charm you. This place has a captivating ambiance and the food served here is toothsome. This bakery is worth visiting, especially during the morning because they serve the best Pancakes with Chocolate sauce. In addition to this a cup of home-made Cappuccino. Perfect cup of coffee to kick start a perfect day! We recommend you to try the Chocolate-Chilly Bomb, Carrot Cake, Chocolate Tart and Chocolate Brownies. These all just taste like heaven on earth!
Your visit to Hills is incomplete, if you haven’t grabbed the authentic Tibetan food. Norling, a small restaurant provides you with the delicious, mouthful Tibetan treats. If you are craving for something incredibly flavorsome, try their Chicken Momos. Norling serves the best Tibetan food in the town and you must try their Thupka, Momos, Thentuk, Thimo or Shapta. We bet you won’t find the pure flavors of classic Tibetan Cuisine anywhere else.
3. The Chocolate Log
As sweet is the name of the cafe so is the food served here. It’s a Paradise for those with a sweet tooth. Located on the Jogibar road, The Chocolate Log is run by an elderly couple who even have the logging facility. Cheryl, the owner is full of enthusiasm; you will remember her charm for a long time. The Home-made bread, Spanish Omelets with Sausage and Cucumber-Mint Lassi will definitely make your day. Chocolate Log’s Lemon Pie, home-made Wine, Chocolate Cakes are also worth a catch.
4. Nick’s Italian Kitchen
Open terrace seating, the view of the Himalayas and classic Italian food: what else do you need from life! Nick’s Italian Kitchen is your answer to the best authentic Italian food if you are on a hunt for some. At Nick’s you will find the classic Italian specialties- Risotto Pizza, Cannelloni, Spaghetti, and Gnocchi with freshly prepared fruit juices. Our pick for you is the ‘pizza everything’ and Lasagne with abundant offerings of cheese. Bon Appetite!
5. Carpe Diem
Carpe Diem is a well-preferred place to hang out with your friends and family, having a hearty conversation over a cup of coffee with the scenic view of the Dhauladhar and Triund mountains. They have a warm and cozy kind of an interior and they even offer the rooftop seating which has a great view. Food atCarpe Diem is just palatable -the Hunter Style Chicken, Chicken Sizzler and Tuna salad will totally leave you craving for more, we assure you. Our pick: Chocolate Cake and Honey-Lemon-Ginger.
6. Lung-Ta Japanese Restaurant
Japanese cuisine might not be on your list when you visit this picturesque town, but let us tell you: no one serves the best Sushi Rolls and Miso Soup as Lung-Ta Restaurant does. We suggest keeping this restaurant on your list, as this mini Japan in McLeod Ganj surely has a lot to offer. The ambiance is cozy and warm and the prices are not heavy on the pocket (Rs 150 only).It’s a great place to spend a quality time with your loved ones. They have daily set menu so Tuesdays and Fridays are the days for yummy Sushi Rolls and Miso Soup. Don’t forget the Lemon Tarts; they are the best in town.
7. Khana Nirvana CommunityCafe
Khana Nirvana Community Cafe can easily be missed as it is located up on a several steep stairways. Serving all natural, organic, vegan food, this cafe is good for the ones who are very health conscious. The food as well the ambiance of the eatery is subtle, yet there is a charm to this place. The menu here offers a variety of lip-smacking treats like Asian dishes, Mexican dishes, Pita Sandwiches, sides, Pita Pizzas, sweet treats, shakes, smoothies and Burritos. The cafe even holds local entertainment most nights – documentary screening, open-mic, Speaker Sessions, etc. You will have a delightful evening here. Don’t forget to try their Apple Cardamom Cooler and warm, steaming Apple Cider. These are mind-blowing and affordable at the same time.
8. The Tibet Kitchen
What can I say about Tibet Kitchen, as the food offered here speaks for itself. Located on the main square, on Jogiwara Road, Tibetan Kitchen is the best eatery in town. Mutton and Chicken Momos, Chicken and Chilly Garlic Noodles will all salivate you taste buds. The authentic Tibetan flavors they have in the food are surely a rare find. Our pick for you are Pork Chilly, Chicken Momo Soup and Kung Pao Golden Fried Baby Corn. A piece of advice -Be careful of the chilly, they take them very seriously.
The Tibet Quality Bakery
The bakery itself says its quality, how can we then doubt it. The place has some really good stuff. Rolls, cakes, flavored breads, there’s nothing to regret as every food item served by this bakery will definitely salivate your taste buds. The bakery is so famous that it’s difficult to find a seat here. Do try their nutty bars, which are loaded withgummy raisins, roasted nuts and chocolate: just a taste of heaven. Yak Roll and Onion Bread are worth spending money on.
10. Morgan’s Place
Owned by Murugan Bala, Morgan Palace is the perfect spot for you and your loved ones. Quirky interiors, view of the hills and hot food: what else can you ask for! At Morgan’s you will find the creamiest, lush, thin and fresh pizza with topping which have the flavors of the hills. It surely is a treat as this place even has an option to custom-make pizza. Choose the topping you like and they will prepare it for you. Their continental breakfasts, BBQ Chicken Pizza, Fish in Lemon are the best.
Who doesn’t love an idyllically-positioned and tranquil place where one can just be on their own? Well Illiterati is the place for those who seek such peace and calm. Owned by a Belgian, Illiterati is an elegantly furnished cafe with big windows and balcony to have the view of the hills with a piano and the books (can even be borrowed or bought). You will definitely love your time here. The food is seriously yummy, a treat for your taste buds! Wood-fired and Smokey flavor food are too good to be true. Our pick: Lasagna, Fresh Salads and Pizza to make your day perfect.
12. Shiva Café
Shiva Café offers you pure tranquility and calmness with the sound of the Bhagsu rivulet that adds a meditating effect to it. It is learnt that the place is not advised to go with family but the superb view calls for an outing with friends. All day long you can hear to their astonishing music be it Trance, Bob Marley or other. Food is really yum. Their Thupka, Momos are toothsome, order anything Chinese, Tibetan or Indian, you will definitely love it.
13. Trek and Dine
Visitors not only visitMcLeod Ganj for solitude but some adventure seekers also come here to undertake the Triund trek. Trek and dine welcomes all, but especially the weary trekkers who after a long trek want some time to relax and have a hearty meal. Wood-fired Pizzas, Pita and Hummus are the specialties of this place. Their espresso is simply incredible, just order a Sandwich with it and relish the experience. If you are having sugar craving, then try their Apple Pie and Carrot Cake. Solely fresh and authentic!
If you are a movie buff – lovers of Madhubala, Gurudutt or Rafi –then this is the place for you. The ambiance would remind you of the 70’sand 80’s era as this place is nothing short of a memorabilia with movie posters, well-known dialogues of actors donning its walls. Moonpeak is an experience in itself. Visit it forcakes, coffee, imaginative sandwiches (Poached Chicken with Mango, Coriander and Lime Sauce. Enjoy your Himachali thali (₹200) while sittingin the outdoorseating area,watchingthe hustle and bustle of the street and admiring the view of the hills.
15Crepe Pancake Hut
Low tables, cushions on the floor and rack novels with a relaxed lounge-like feel, Crepe Pancake Hut offer its visitors a full of chic vibes. This place is for the perfect lazy days where you can just relax have a hearty brunch of yummy Chocolate Pancake, Scrambled Eggs and a hot coffee to keep you warm. If you don’t crave to have something on the heavier side, just enjoy a glass of green juiceor cup of mint tea and a book to go with it. Every item on the menu, though simple, is packed with flavors. Try their Shakshuka and Sticky Ginger Cake. Perfection!
16. Peace Café
Peace Caféis a cozy little cafe highly popular among monks, nuns and travelers. You will find the locals and the monks chattering while enjoying their stir-fried noodles. Though a small place Cafe, Peace Café is a good place for a warm delicious breakfast – fresh juices, Masala Tea and perfectly steamed Tibetan bread. Enjoy their Momos, Thenthuk (with cheese/ tofu/ egg/veggies/) and Thukpa.
17. Seed Café
Enjoy the scenic view of the stunning Dhauladhar range while munching on the yummiest pasta in town. Seed Café is one place where you can enjoy delicious food while watching the most picturesque view from the glass windows. Visit the café in the evening and you’ll find an utterly different ambiance – Live music and even open mic nights. Order anything – their Pancakes, Lasagnas, Pizzas, Sandwiches, Noodles, Pastas – you definitely won’t regret it. Don’t miss on their yummy desserts and delicious Continental bakes.
18. Jimmy’s Italian Kitchen
Jimmy’s Italian kitchen has a similar resemblance to the Chill Café in Delhi –the décor and of course the menu – the quality of food here is not compromised. Jimmy’s serves some of the best food without being heavy on the pocket. Their list of Grilled dishes, exquisite range of Pastas, Salads, Shakes, Pizzas and Desserts are all prepared to perfection. Gnocchi in Pesto Sauce, fresh Waffles or Pancakes will make you visit Jimmy’s again and again.
19.Black Tent Café
Black Tent Café –a cute, little and quiet place where you can read, while sipping the hot cup of Kangra Tea. This eatery is a new addition but has gained a lot of appreciation because of its delicious food, friendly service, generous portions and book collection. On Wednesdays, you can enjoy the musical evenings arranged especially for the visitors. To keep yourself warm from the chilly weather, drink up from the selection of creamy hot chocolates or organic teas. At Black Tent you get a fusion ofIndian and Tibetanfood (Momos and hot Sandwiches). Do try their vegetable Momos and Vegetable Soup, with fresh Spinach Mushrooms.
20. Namgyal Café
For all the Pizza lovers, Namgyal Caféshould be a place of worship. Though they serve only vegetarian Pizzas, the creamy Mozzarella, the yummy veggies will definitely put a smile on your face. The Aubergine pizza, Spinach Pizza and the exquisite Walnut Cheese Pizza are a must try. Reside on the roof top terrace, have sunbath and flick through the books offered inside.