On my list of iconic eating-out places that symbolise the old-world charm of Pune, Marz-o-rin is an A-lister! I’ve been eating Marz-o-rin snacks since I was a kid, who spent every summer vacation in “Poona” where my grandparents and cousins lived back then.
Marzorin (as I thought it was spelled, until my most recent trip) on Main Street in Camp, was a must-go-to place on every visit, and something that I, as a kid, really looked forward to!
The chicken mayonnaise sandwiches were something I’d never tasted before, and were perhaps not available anywhere else in the 1970s. In fact, Marz-o-rin was the place that introduced me to the concept of Mayonnaise! It also introduced me to the brilliant idea of Pudina Chutney Sandwiches, and Hot Dog Rolls!!
Growing up in traditional and conservative cities like Ambala, Madras (back then), Secunderabad, Jabalpur, and Allahabad (oops, Prayagraj), I was far removed from the so-called cool and cosmopolitan foods that Poona and Bombay had to offer. So the budding foodie in me would fantasize about the new foods I’d discover on every trip to Poona, and Marz-o-rin.
Here, I also discovered egg sandwiches, pastries, macaroons, and flavoured milk!
I know for most people it would be like, “what??!!” but hey, that’s what India was like back in the 70s and 80s. I tasted my first burger in 1984, and my first real pizza in 1989!
Coming back to Marz-o-rin, I was on a day trip to Pune to see my parents, and suddenly got the urge to have their sandwiches.
I ended up buying two each of Chicken Mayonnaise, Cheese Mayonnaise, and Chutney Sandwiches from the takeaway counter downstairs, and ended up having a Chicken Roll while I was waiting, all this for under 500 rupees!
The taste and the texture of great food, and the experience of great service, was the same as I always remembered! Which was a delightful surprise, because I grew up to eat similar sandwiches all over the world, and my tastes as a foodie have certainly evolved, and yet the food at Marz-o-rin still delighted the grown adult, as it always did the child in me!
For all the change and the evolution of food in the world and arrival of new restaurants for foodies in Pune, I am happy to note, that nothing’s changed at Marz-o-rin!