Vendors on Avenue Road produce munchies for all seasons
On Avenue Road, iconic and ever-crowded, you’ll find everything under the sun. Some of the most outlandish items are displayed in shops here, pushing you to make at least a mental note of things you may want in the future, and when it comes to food, it’s really no different.
A few sellers here specialise in making traditional south Indian snacks and savoury items, sold in shops or on the footpath. Walking by, it’s difficult not to stop and enquire about the many items in different shapes, sizes and colors. These joints have an excellent confluence of snacks from Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu, while some items are high-breed varieties of interculinary experimentation.
Many are low in oil and are rarely deep fried; some shops here sell a particular variety that has a negligible amount of oil, called ‘chintamani snacks’. These are rather sought after by customers, says Ramesh Babu, who has been in the business for 25 years. With 65 to 70 varieties of snacks in stock at any given time, he changes his items according to the season, as there are particular snacks for each festival.
Interestingly, Ramesh doesn’t want his son to continue in his line; he believes there is no stability in the life of a small businessman anymore. He recollects how he used to make reasonable profits in the initial years, while today, he says despite producing much more, he faces losses owing to the increasing price of raw materials and the decline in demand for his products as packed snacks dominate the market now.
Ramesh is capable of making over 120 kinds of items. He insists on making snacks for festivals of all religions, and is keen to learn how to make new ones, as he has been doing all these years.