Zurich Notes – Pursuing Indian Food

Its been 26 days since I arrived here, the biggest city of Switzerland. As I am supposed to be here for a while, the need to find Indian food ingredients and Indian food places was critical! Here’s a primer of my search for Indian cuisine, and stores till now….hopefully someday this post will help tourists and residents find options for desi-food in Zurich.

Indian Stores

For some strange reason, I notice a lot lesser Indian stores here than I did in Geneva, maybe its just because I have not explored properly yet..

I rely on two places currently for my Masala, pickle, ready to eat food needs from the subcontient:

  • Barkat Cash and Carry : It has two stores in Zurich, the one I visit is on Badenerstrasse 530 8048 Zürich. The way to approach the place is by taking Tram 2 and getting down at Freehofstrasse, the store is next to a Singpore cuisine restaurant. You can get Indian/Asian veggies, masalas, rotis/paranthas, meat and odds and ends there. I feel that price wise Barkat is better than other places.
  • Agarwal Indian Food: Writing this because everyone else recommends it, I have never seen the store open (maybe I was late). Quality of food products is recommended by various people I know. The store is on Langstrasse 62, 8004 Zurich
  • Sher e Punjab: Now this is more of a section to a small eating joint, where one can purchase indian products. Limited things are available but basic spices, atta, maggi noodles, pulses etc… are available. Pricewise its not the best place to be. One nifty addition is the movie section where you can rent Indian films from them. Visit http://punjab.ch/
  • Coop/Migros: One thing to notice, common spices can be found in Coop and Migros, all one should know is the german/french name of the spices.

Indian Food

Being a bachelor who is staying alone, cooking is not the most desirable task for me. Some days I tend to eat out, but then eating out in an Indian restaurant is much more expensive than one thinks. In the last 26 days, I have sampled out 5 different Indian eating joints, and can give a review on those. One disclaimer is that I am a vegetarian, so cannot comment on the food for the non-vegetarian junta.

  • Sher e Punjab: This small eatery is located at Sihlfeldstrasse 45, its a small place, you may even miss it out as there is a tiny board out there. To get there take Tram 2 or 3 and get down at Lochergut. The eatery is run by a sikh gentleman and it also has a store section (mentioned above), the food has a variety of punjabi dishes for both vegetarians and non vegetarians. Average dinner for a single person could cost around 20 CHF (or more), but the flavor and quantity  provided makes up for the price, food is homely and prompt. I would like to return to the place as I like the food and can get home-style phulkas (roti) there. There is little to speak in terms of ambiance, but then its a no nonsense eatery. The link is mentioned above. Note: Its closed on Sundays
  • King’s Kurry Little India: This is a restaurant on the left side of the Bahnhof Weidikon, you can also take Tram 14 to get there. The restaurant has an outside eating area as well in the garden. Unfortunately on the day I went, it was raining, so we had to be seated inside. The ambiance is good, and the place is usually crowded with plenty of locals eating here. Prices are a bit high, the service is prompt, but a dinner for two will cost upwards of 75 CHF. Taste of food is good, however the quantity is not as good as Sher e Punjab, but just adequate. It would be a good idea to make prior bookings before visiting. Visit: http://www.kingskurry.ch/e/india/index.htm
  • King’s Kurry Thali: This is a Thali style eatery just off the Schaffhauserplatz tram stop (next to the Credit Suisse office), it is a recently opened restaurant. Each day there is a different Thali offering, and the same is served to you. One can choose between a vegetarian thali, chicken or lamb. A Thali is provided with two curries, raita, dal and rice (you can order naan/rotis too). Vegetarian thali is for 19 CHF, Chicken thali for 21 CHF and Lamb for 23 CHF. Food was above average, the key advantage is that one cannot find a thali at this price easily in Zurich, the restaurant folks are helpful but new to business. There is a rebate on takeaway and a student lunch box for 10 CHF. Good place to visit specially for lunches.
  • Restaurant Kerala: Restaurant Kerala is not only a south Indian restaurant, it offers Punjabi cuisine as well. In terms of ambience this rates the highest amongst all the places I have visited, just off the Radiostudio tram stop (Tram 11), the restaurant offers a variety of food from appams to chicken tikka. Service is cordial but a bit slow, a dinner for two will cost upwards of 75 CHF, the good part is that the servings are tasty and sufficient. Make a booking before visiting as the place gets crowded in the evenings. Visit: http://www.keralarestaurant.ch/pages/eng/index_e.htm
  • Karachi and Bombay Take away: I just visited the place 2 days ago, its a small takeaway but has some sitting area too. Patrons can select from a combination of three curries and take a thali with rice or roti(phulka). Vegetarian meal was 13 CHF and Non-veg starts from 17 CHF. Flavorwise the food was really impressive, I relished the homely feel of the food, to top it one can take any amount of raita, chutney, pickle and candies with the food. The place plays Bollywood/Pakistani music videos and is a nice change from the regular sophisticated restaurants. Limited ambiance but good food at a very good price make this place a favorite. You can visit the place by getting down at Stampfenbachplatz tram stop (Tram 14) and walk to Stampfenbachstrasse 32, 8006 Zürich.

Hope this mini food guide helps a lot of people in figuring out the places in Zurich

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2 thoughts on “Zurich Notes – Pursuing Indian Food

  1. Hi Ankur,

    Thanks for all the info. One question i have is whether it is allowed to carry ready-to-eat Indian food, while travelling from India to Zurich? If it is, considering the price difference, would you recommend it?

    1. Yes, you can travel with it, there will be no problem.
      You can also find the ready to eat food in the Indian groceries here for 2.5 – 3 CHF each.

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