Karachi Eat’23 Festival was a delightful journey through a kaleidoscope of tastes, fragrances, and cultures – with live performances lined up as the cherry on top!
I was excited and thrilled to attend this magnificent event personally, indulging myself in some delicious delicacies along the way.
Let me take you down my memory lane as I recount the experiences from the eve of this excellent food festival; read on for more!
Everything I Tried at Karachi Eat’23:
From crispy crabs to lip-smacking biryani, classic beef burgers to spicy khousay! I indulged in savoring them all. Here’s everything I had:
1. Spital Potato Sticks from National Foods
Price: PKR 150
Well, where do I begin? If you love fried but dried and cold potatoes with mayo garlic sauce, this dish is definitely for you! The mayo garlic sauce being the HERO of the dish, the potatoes were cold and nothing like the crispy goodness you’d imagine.
Moreover, it needed that signature ingenuity Karachi Eat is renowned for!
2. Crab Chips from Social Crab
Price: PKR 500
I thought I’d give crabs a shot. To my surprise, I ate out of a tray of crab-flavored coleslaw – thrown scarcely on some crackers. It’s safe to say that I didn’t find any trace of the promised caviar either.
It was also absurdly expensive – don’t waste your money on this one!
3. Beef Imli Bihari Burger from Chatni & Co.
Price: PKR 400
Next up, we gave the savory beef burger, smothered in that tantalizing tangy tamarind chutney and that oh-so-zesty green chili! Best of all, it was fun to eat – even when it did get messy.
4. Beef Khausay from Tarkaybaaz
Price: PKR 490
Being a hardcore Khausay fan, I had never tried beef in Khausay before Karachi Eat’23. I have to say – my taste buds were simply not ready!
This flavor combination was unlike anything else – the succulent beef, tender after stewing in the right spices, offers just the right kick, accompanied by the toothsome noodles that added so much texture.
5. Fajita Spaghetti from Bake Parlor
Price: PKR 200
Although it tasted and looked rather bland, the noodles were surprisingly well-textured and added a shocking twist to the dish.
All jokes aside, though, I’d recommend cooking some spaghetti at home using Bake Parlor – it’d be much more fulfilling and flavorsome!
6. Chicken Fajita Pizza Sandwich from Fermento
Price: PKR 250
It’s well worth the hype! The luscious caramelized onion and the cheesy goodness in the cold weather were a delight. Plus, the texture of the dough was as smooth as milk.
Don’t let its size deceive you – this sandwich had enough filling power to satisfy me in no time!
7. Strawberry Icy Popsicle from Zavery Pops
Price: PKR 300
The combination of the sweet-tart strawberry and the invigorating chill at Beach View Park was immaculate. Despite the bitter cold, it felt super refreshing, so much so that I kept craving more.
Every lick was accompanied by chunks of super succulent strawberries, making every bite even more extraordinary. The delightful icy vapors made me feel like I could take on anything!
8. Banarasi Paan:
Price: PKR 100
Well, well, well! I tried the famous Banarsi Paan from Lahore, and it won hearts! It was outrageous, in all the best ways, of course!
The paan leaf was super fresh and had a distinct crisp, making my taste buds sing joyfully! But that’s not all – stuffed to the brim with sweet jelly and pan masala, making it oh-so-sweet.
Indeed a treat worthy of royalty!
9. Pancakes (Ferrero + Ice cream) from House of P.W.C
Price: PKR 500
It was absolute perfection! The chef responsible for these delicious pancakes is a real-life wizard – each bite was an adventure, with the perfect fusion of Ferrero chocolate and velvety ice cream like magic in my mouth.
The presentation made me swoon – it looked too beautiful to destroy by chewing on them! There’s no doubt that I’m giving this meal two enormous thumbs up.
10. Nachos from Sombrero
Price: PKR 450
The nachos from Macho Nachos were bursting with flavors and textures – crunchy chips and hot melted cheese.
But the sauce was different from what I had expected. It tasted like green chutney, onions, and tomatoes, all mixed in – a flavor combination that does not complement great nachos!
Everything That Blew Me Away:
Groovy Line Up:
With Asim Azhar to Kaifi Khalil and Young Stunners, Karachi Eat’23 live concert lineup was incredible!
A perfect blend of mainstream pop, rap, and rock that moved the audiences, each performer’s energy was super contagious as the crowd sang along to the beats and grooved to the music.
Children’s Play Area:
Karachi Eat Festival was a hit amongst parents, mainly because of this year’s specially designed children’s play area and an array of thrilling rides and enjoyable activities. The kids were thoroughly entertained and had the time of their lives!
Creative Spark by Lipton and 7UP:
Another most hyped spot was 7UP’s excellent Instagram-able swings. 7up created a festive atmosphere for the young crowd by setting up some genuinely Instagram-worthy spots that got them in the mood to party.
Things To Be Improved:
I struggled immensely with an unreliable internet connection. Not even mobile data or 5G devices were working!
That said, it wasn’t something entirely out of the blue; this was consistent with all its previous. It happens every year. Still, it’s surprising that this issue has persisted for so long despite the implications that it has wrought on attendees every year.
I noticed something notable during my visit – sparsely placed trash cans and the complete absence of restrooms. A prestigious festival like Karachi Eat, with its 10th installment, should have made some basic sanitation facilities available. I urge the organizers to consider these issues for upcoming installments of Karachi Eat.
Security and Mismanagement:
This year’s Karachi Eat Food Festival had numerous chaotic episodes, from the altercation between three girls to a mob of boys succeeding in breaching the outer premises of the venue.
The lack of security at the event caused such mayhem that the Coke Studio-famed Kaifi Khalil had little choice but to abandon his performance midway, and the much-awaited Young Stunners didn’t even get their chance to perform.
Karachi Eat Festival is now one of the most sought-after events in Karachi. With the limited sources of entertainment in the city, this festival brings people from all walks of life together. It allows us to experience different cultures, flavors, and unforgettable performances.
The event has shortcomings; however, the organizers strive to create an opportunity for us all. Addressing these issues and working on the shortcomings will make Karachi Eat a more enjoyable experience for all!
For now, though, let’s bask in the afterglow of this fantastic festival and look forward to the next one! Who’s excited?