Family outings in busy metros can be a challenging puzzle, with not many options for the entire family. But that’s changed in recent years. First, we had a wave of food fests in major cities, all held at central locations and offering the best of restaurants at one location. Now, we have an even more enterprising idea, this time by the name of the Great Indian Golchakkar (GIG). Curated by Gourmet Planet, an online community that conceptualises and curates gourmet food-related events, and the ministry of tourism’s Incredible India campaign, the event promises a perfect amalgamation of food, fun and shopping right in the middle of the city.
To be held from February 5-7 at Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in New Delhi, GIG will feature music from across the nation and give carnival-goers the chance to tingle their tastebuds with a vast variety of Indian cuisines. And that’s not all. A host of traditional handicrafts that reflect India’s rich cultural heritage will also be on display. “Delhi has had a deluge of food festivals, but there is nothing for the complete family. If you are not a foodie, what do you do? The inspiration behind GIG came from there. I thought, why not have some great music and crafts as well?” says Sonny Walia, founder, Gourmet Planet, adding, “I met artists from Gujarat and Odisha who have been doing the same (craft) work for 18 generations… People in metropolitan cities are not aware of their work. So I thought, why not put all this under one umbrella and offer something that the people of Delhi haven’t seen before?”
Walia means what he says, for a look at the carnival’s line-up throws up something for everyone. For music lovers, there will be jazz, blues, EDM, electronica and even Hindi rock and sufi acts. Apart from a live set by Coke Studio artistes, some other performers include Karsh Kale, Prateek Kuhad, Hamza & Mannu and Medieval Punditz. Food lovers also have a lot to look forward to, as the carnival will bring together some of the biggest eateries in Delhi: Zambar, SodaBottleOpenerWala and Khan Chacha, to name just a few. Another big attraction will be Gol Bazaar, which will feature famous and popular regional Indian food—think succulent Tunday kebabs from Lucknow, Tibetan momos, royal Hyderabadi biryani and Delhi’s famous Kuremal ki kulfi.
But food and music apart, one of the most important things GIG is focusing on is creating and increasing awareness among people about some of India’s myriad crafts. The rare craftsmanship on display will include the traditional natural perfumes of Kannauj, Rogan art from Gujarat, stone pottery from Meghalaya, Varanasi’s jamdani work, silver filigree work from Odisha and mask art from Majuli, Assam. “The artists are thrilled to get this platform, where they will be able to showcase their craft and abilities. So far, most of them have been confined to government exhibitions and programmes, which have a very different kind of audience. So they are excited to be in front of an audience that is not aware of such dying arts,” says Walia, who adds that plans are afoot to showcase these arts and crafts in other metro cities as well and curate at least three-four GIG carnivals this year.