Eating Out in Manali: Top 9 Restaurants to Try When in Manali (2020)
Manali has a lot to offer, the breath-taking views of the Himalayas, there are many eateries which are not to be missed by any tourist whether you are a foodie or not. There are many restaurants to try when in Manali and you will want to go back to each one of them for the scrumptious food they serve. In addition to the natural beauty and blissful hills, the amazing food served at restaurants in Manali is a major reason to go back to this hill station over and over.
There are a variety of eateries serving scrumptious meals in Manali. Mall road in Manali is full of eateries serving north Indian cuisine with a few others like Chopsticks serving Chinese and Tibetan cuisines. However, places like Vashisth and Old Manali have a hippie vibe to them and there are few eateries famous for their picturesque locations and the cuisines they serve. Some of these eateries in Manali are owned by foreigners from Austria, France, and Spain who have settled for good in the town and are serving the delicacies influenced by the native cuisines and do justice to the food served to people who come to visit their restaurants.
Eating Out in Manali: Top 9 Restaurants to Try When in Manali
A list of the eateries serving best of the food in Manali is given below:
1. Mount View Restaurant
Mount view restaurant is one of the oldest and famous places to eat at Manali. They have an open rooftop and lounge where you can enjoy food and drinks with your friends and family in the lap of nature. You can enjoy the cool breeze and enjoy your time with food and drinks at this restaurant. This is also a nice place to organize small meetings, lunches, and official sessions and conferences. They are well known in Manali for serving exquisite dishes, They specialize in serving exquisite Chinese, Tibetan, Italian, Japanese, Continental, and Indian delicacies.
Location: Mall Road, Model Town, Siyal, Manali, Himachal Pradesh
Timings: 8:00 AM to 11:00 PM
2. Renaissance Manali
Renaissance is located on the busy and bustling streets of Old Manali and is quite famous among tourists who want to sit and enjoy the laid-back life of the hills by sitting and enjoying reading at the café. It is one of the best places to enjoy Italian and Mexican cuisines in the town. It is a good spot for you to enjoy the scrumptious food while listening to the amazing music this cage plays. It is a good place to stop by and enjoy some time here.
Location: Old Manali Road, Near Manu Temple, Manali, Himachal Pradesh
Timings: 10:00 AM to 11:00 PM
3. Martin’s (Himalayan Sports Club)
Martin’s Himalayan sports club is an interesting place you must visit if you are in Manali on a Sunday because that is only when the place is open and serving. It is run by Martin who is an Austrian chef and married to a Pahari girl who opens the place for Sunday’s brunch only. This place has quite some popularity from Captain Amarinder Singh to Omar Abdullah and many others. You need to pre-book the place if you are planning to enjoy the service at Martin’s. All the food at Martin’s is to die for and especially his wood-fired Pizza and chicken with fries. The Sunday brunch is although hosted in a sports club but it is a huge meal and anyway you would not be able to contain your hunger after looking at the variety of options.
They keep rotating the dishes every Sunday, so you would find many new and older options on the menu every week which prevents it from being boring. They have smoked trout and a great pizza selection. The best part is their laid-back seating with backless wooden benches where the customers can take their post-lunch naps too. You can always enjoy a good game at the sports club with your meal since the brunch is hosted at a sports club. Make sure you visit Martin’s on your next trip to Manali.
Location: Shanag village, 5 km from Manali
Timings: open April to November on Sundays from Noon to 5 p.m
4. Rose Garden
The best thing about Rose Garden in Manali is that they plant their berries. Starting from Strawberries, raspberries, peaches, plums, apricots, and cherries. They make preserves and jams which they sell at their store which is the main attraction. The home-grown pears are served up poached at the rose garden which tastes amazing, as dessert. You have to climb some stone steps before entering the place. The smell of roses is enthralling when you enter this place and feels like you have entered heaven.
They have elegant and fine furniture in the café which makes it even more attractive. The beautiful and quaint restaurant in Manali is run by Rosalba Lucioli who is an Italian lady and the mother of India’s foremost Winter Olympian, Shiva Keshavan. Rosalba gets cured meats like Parma ham from Italy and grows most of the herbs and fruit organically. Getting organic fruits and vegetables at a restaurant when you see them growing nearby is very satisfying. If you are seated outside, you will be able to watch the pizza dough being kneaded and tossed, and the toppings laid on before it is slid into the oven. You would not want to end your meal without dessert. One must end the meal with tiramisu or the poire belle Hélène, which is amazing warm poached pears with dollops of vanilla ice cream.
Location: Vashisht, 3 km from Manali
Timings: Open end-April to mid-October
5. Johnson’s Café
Johnson’s café is one of the oldest and most famous cafes in Manali. It is equally famous among the locals and tourists be it national or international tourists visiting Manali. They serve 10 preparations of the Himalayan trout and the most famous is the baked trout with almond sauce and if you like trout with gravy, you can also try the local flavors. You can try local flavors as the trout curry served with steamed spinach and Himachali red rice is one of the best meals you will have in Manali. They have an open rooftop which adds to the charm of the place. The terraced garden is the best place to sit. They set-up a bonfire on cold mountain nights with the live music which adds to the charm of the place.
You can enjoy the view of the mountains, food, and music at the same time. The music they play varies from the local folk music to hard metal and heavy electronic music. Very close to Johnson’s café is the comparatively newly built Johnson’s lodge which is a warm and inviting place in the cold Manali nights. It has an inviting fireplace and year-round service; the Lodge is the perfect place to chill. Their multi-cuisine menu covers Continental, Pan Asian, and Mughlai classics which is famous in the area. You must order the classic chicken thigh with rosemary. With energetic music and a lively buzz, the Lodge is also a good place for a Saturday night out and offers the best cocktails and booze in town as well. The crowd is pretty good on Saturdays as well. Make sure you visit Johnson’s café on your next visit to the place as this is not a place to be missed in Manali.
Location: Near Circuit House Road
Timings: Open through the year
6. Casa Belle Vista
Casa Belle Vista is located at one of the most picturesque locations in Manali and is a beautiful restaurant. It is owned by a Spanish chef and serves dishes inspired by Spanish cuisine. What makes this place more attractive is that it is surrounded by the tall and beautiful Pine trees on one side and the Beas river on the other side. Being in the middle of nature makes this place even more attractive. The ambiance is also very nice and the furniture including the entire seating is made up of a single tree trunk which gives the place a very raw and natural feeling. Locals and tourists enjoy the place equally. The dishes served at this place taste like heaven. One must try the lemon soup, green ravioli, Spanish omelet.
They also serve a very tasty and indulgent chocolate coolant which is to die for. All the seating and furniture in the restaurant is arranged around the centerpiece, the wood-fired oven. You can see your pizza being baked in an open fire oven in front of your eyes and being served right out from the oven to your table. This is an all-vegetarian place and serves a menu of wine and flavorful, vegetarian small plates. Do not miss going to this place as it is located in the most scenic place in Manali. Casa Belle Vista also provides beautiful accommodation. They have cottages for family and a group of people who want to stay together and doubles rooms as well at a beautiful location in Manali. You must not miss visiting this restaurant on your next visit to Manali.
Location: Log Huts Road, off Old Manali Road
Timings: open April to November
7. Drifter’s Café
This is an ideal place if you are looking to spend some time in the majestic Himalayas while working from the hills and rather than staying at the hotel all the time, one can spend their workday at this cozy café as they have free internet service. For people planning to spend some time at the café with friends, can also have an option to play board games as there are many board games available here. Bibliophiles will also find a collection of nice books here and they can spend their time reading books. They also serve scrumptious eggs benedict and eggs Florentine, and the waffles and pancakes are drowned in enough maple syrup to enjoy on the gloomy winter days and to lift your spirits.
One must however keep a check on the time as the time slips by when you are at the café. They have low seating and laidback music to enjoy at this cozy place. They also serve flavored hookahs and organize live musical nights. Do not miss visiting Drifter’s café while on your visit to Manali. You will find many Backpackers and solo travelers here with whom you can initiate a conversation and enjoy the company if you are looking for it.
Location: Old Manali Road
Timings: throughout the year
This place is unavoidable if you are in Manali as it is located at the heart of Manali, the most frequently visited place at every hill station in India, the mall road. Chopsticks are famous for its Chinese, Tibetan, and a bit of Japanese cuisine. They serve the best dim sums in town and are quite fast selling. People come to chopsticks especially to enjoy the dim sums and other Tibetan food. The ambiance is pretty much Tibetan. The walls and the décor has done is very pretty and will give you a look into the Tibetan culture. Do not forget to order gyakok which is a Tibetan hot pot served in a large copper vessel above a burner, into which you dip noodles, bok choy, tofu, vegetables, chicken, and boiled egg. They also serve other scrumptious Asian food which is quite famous among locals and tourists. Do not miss visiting Chopsticks restaurant if you a fam of Tibetan, Chinese, and other Asian food when in Manali.
Location: Mall Road, Manali
Timings: throughout the year
9. The Oven in the Garden
It is a very famous eatery around Manali and is visited by many tourists and locals around the year. This place is on the radar of most people and tourists because of its picturesque location in Manali. If you want to enjoy your food in the lap of nature, this is the place to be. The oven in the Garden is located in a very beautiful apple orchard which gives it a unique twist and an added plus point over other eateries in Manali.
This place is famous for its wood-fired pizza which is unique to the town. The pizza served is authentic and can be enjoyed on any day. However, the best time to visit Oven in the garden is the Saturday brunch because that is when they prepare their famous and umami lamb roast, served with a tangy beetroot puree. This place should not be missed if you want to eat your food in the lap of nature and enjoy a beer or two with your friends and family.
Location: Rohtang Highway, 3 kms from Manali
Timings: Open from March to November