Monday12:00 – 2:00 pm, 5:00 – 10:00 pm.

Tuesday12:00 – 2:00 pm, 5:00 – 10:00 pm.

Wednesday12:00 – 2:00 pm, 5:00 – 10:00 pm.

Thursday12:00 – 2:00 pm, 5:00 – 10:00 pm.

Friday12:00 – 2:00 pm, 5:00 – 10:00 pm.

Saturday5:00 – 10:00 pm.

Sunday5:00 – 10:00 pm.

120 Hereford Street, Christchurch Central

03-943 9536

In India, and particularly Mumbai, (the densely populated city once known as Bombay), eating small snacks late into the evening street-side is a daily ritual for many of the people who call the city home. Indian food has long been popular on NZ shores, but up until now the good old curry house has dominated the Indian food scene. Mumbaiwala has based its refreshing menu and approach on Mumbai’s daily custom of sharing small plates of food with friends and family.

At Mumbaiwala plates might not be served street-side, but the spacious inner city restaurant and bar is redolent of what you’d expect from a bustling Mumbai street: it has a dusky brown fit out that is punctuated with colourful bursts, it’s busy and full of features that constantly catch your attention. There are traditional Indian artifacts, instructions on how to wrap a sari on the bathroom door and recycled materials that have been used resourcefully.

Mumbaiwala’s menu is not without curries, biriyani and Indian-style breads – they’re all there; but it is the street food offering that sets Mumbaiwala apart. Expect the likes of sev puri (Indian style nachos); squid bhajee; dabeli (Indian style sliders) and keema pav, a classic of Bombay’s old cafes. The food is flavoursome and interesting and authentic, albeit with a fresh update. Mumbaiwala’s murg makhani, a take on butter chicken, is far from the sweet and creamy version you’ll likely be accustomed to – it is smoky, and beautifully spiced. Open late into the evening, Mumbaiwala operates as both a bar and restaurant, though the emphasis of the bar is certainly on snacking while drinking.
​There's also a 50-seater private function room for larger groups. ​

Wala means a person who is connected with or belongs to, and with the growth in popularity of street-food, shared plates, Indian culture and late night dining, Mumbaiwala looks set to become an inner city venue that many of us decide we are walas to.

Words by Grace Hall & Photography by Naomi Haussmann

120 Hereford Street, Christchurch Central

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