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Restaurant Review: Khoka Khola

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By Syeda Maryam Fatima

For those who haven’t been there yet, Khoka Khola is the perfect blend of fusion-desi street food, above-par service and a vintage khoka ambiance, complete with an evocative collection of tunes that range from Nusrat Saab to Lata and Jagjit Singh. It’s a small eatery which has both wooden chairs and benches paired with very desi baloch-y styled cushions and a subtle touch of truck art. They also have seating available outside.
Food is served in bronze, vintage pots and trays. The cutlery is all steel which truly enhances the whole khokha feel of it. It’s one of the few places that has managed to satisfy my invariable craving for good Nihari and Kulfa in Islamabad, and their scrumptious butter chicken, served with rice and tandoori paratha, is to die for. Their thali consists of ‘miyan jee’ styled channay, vegetable and meat curry. There’s one special dish on the menu daily to add variety to it and add some spice that some might be looking for. Let’s not forget the perfect blend of milk and yogurt to make icy, thick, foamy lassi that serves as the perfect fix for this blazing heat. And what’s a khokha without some ‘karakay daar doodh patti’ served in cute little glasses.

KK has instantly become my go-to spot when looking for good desi food. Plus, it helps that it’s run by the owner himself, Zubair Khan. Their motto is “for the love of good food” which couldn’t be more accurate. With the prices rocketing sky high nowadays, the khokha is fairly reasonable and for sure gives you value for money. 


The only cons are lack of adequate space and dim lighting, which makes us selfie lovers struggle a bit. The owner definitely needs to look into this. 

I always wanted to get that proper khokha/dhabba experience but being a woman it was a tad bit difficult. On the other hand now, with khokha khola, I can at least get a close feel of that. It is destined for great things on the Islamabad culinary scene 🙂 – open for iftar, dinner and sehri at Beverly Center!

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