Shim Tur | Pahar Ganj’s Korean den!

Kimchi Fried Rice - Shim Tur
Shim Tur
Shim Tur

Up for a food adventure? Make your way through dilapidated lanes of Pahar Ganj, to discover authentic Korean food, in a set up where you least expect it.

One can never have enough of Paharganj. Akin to Dharamsala and Manali, this place has a hippie air and serves as a base for a lot of backpackers.

Hence, a lot of restaurants here serve just about everything. I am not kidding, they DO serve everything – Pizzas, Burgers, Goulash, Falafels, Shakshukas, Russian breakfast, Pastas and many other dishes from all kinds of world cuisines.

However, there’s one gem of a place called Shim Tur, which serves home-style authentic South Korean delicacies only. Way back in 2003, Chang, the owner, was backpacking in India, when he thought of opening a restaurant for Korean backpackers.

Having heard a lot about this restaurant, I decided to visit it. But finding Shim Tur is no mean feat. After crossing various narrow dilapidated lanes and climbing 2 floors of a murky guesthouse, I was pleasantly surprised by the clean, fun and relaxed atmospherics of Shim Tur, which literally means ‘take some rest. I couldn’t wait to relax after foraging through those dusty broken lanes to find Shim Tur.

After my visit to Busan Korean Restaurant, I was vaguely familiar with Korean Cuisine. But, still it took me a while to place my order. Though later Chang told me the difference between the food at both the eateries. Shim Tur serves South Korean food, whereas Busan Korean’s style of preparation belongs more to the North Korean side.

After much deliberation, I ordered for Kimchi Fried Rice. While the food took some time to arrive, I had a great time listening to Simon and Garfunkel’s ‘The Sound of Silence’. Few minutes later, a tray of Spicy-Sweet Potato, Cucumber Kimchi, Kimchi Rice with fried egg on top was served. The spicy rice cooked with veggies was an absolute revelation. The veggies were amply cooked and the crunch was intact. Mixed with Kimchi, the rice had a distinct taste of fermented cabbage and chili paste. The egg on top rightly balanced the different flavours.

During the first few meals, Korean food is not an easily likeable food. With lots of meat and fermented condiments, it tastes unlike any our Indian dishes. Not many people would be aware, that the fermentation process happens naturally. The older the Kimchi, the better it is. However, once you develop a taste for it, you can’t get enough of it.

I have been to many places in Paharganj now, but none really exudes the peaceful vibe of Shim Tur. Originally meant for Korean backpackers, over the years it has managed to make a clientele amongst other tourists and locals as well.

Upon asking Chang, why he hasn’t put up Shim Tur’s signboards on the main road, he said he wants people to have a little adventure while finding their way to the cafe. And after visiting the place, I believe it’s one adventure that people may want to go on, more than once.

Address: 3F, Navrang Guest House, 6 Tooti Galli, Main Bazaar, Paharganj, New Delhi

Contact: +91 9810386717

Read: Best Places to eat in Pahar Ganj

In a nutshell:

Location: A bit tricky to find, as no signboards available. Enter the narrow lane (Mushtaq Rai Khanna Road) besides Sam’s Café and then take a right onto a dingy thin alley, which leads to Navrang Guest House. Don’t be shy to ask directions.

Atmosphere: Clean, comfortable with happy vibe. Although, the dirty building in which it’s located can cause some alarm.

Service: Friendly staff who understand English and are quick to give you suggestions.

Food: Korean food in the heart of the city, at an affordable price.

Must Haves: Kim bop, Bi Bim Bop, Kimchi Rice and Sam-Kyup Sal.

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The Shim Tur Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato


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