Sharma ji ki Chai


Lalit Sharma’s father Chandra Prakash Sharma moved from Aligarh to Lucknow, and set up a tea shop in 1950. Initially, a coal-fired clay oven was used for cooking. Tea was served in clay tumblers (kullhad) then, as it is today. Liberally buttered buns (bun-makkhan) was much liked. When Lalit was a boy, one serving of tea cost 25 p; now it is ₹20. The outlet opens at 9 AM and shuts down at 7:30 PM. Hundreds of customers flock to have their Sharma Chai every day. They also enjoy the gol samosa and poha served here. The ball-shaped gol samosa is their speciality. Lalit lists many prominent politicians and film stars among his clients, but claims that customers from every stratum of society are welcomed equally. Young people love to visit, and the reasonable prices charged for their delicious tea and snacks ensure that the shop does brisk business.