Handcrafted, innovative, and blending Indian traditional with international flavours, luxury mithai in India has been seen taking over the weddings of Shloka Mehta and Akash Ambani, and Isha Ambani and Anand Piramal. So we rounded up the five must-try brands for your dose of luxury mithai this season, just in time for Rakhi.
The world of Indian desserts witnessed a major change when the trusted local halwai was overtaken by branded, multi-store chains such as Haldiram’s and Bikanervala. Though this was more than half a century ago, there is once again a similar uprising, albeit a quieter one and for a more discerning audience. A number of luxury mithai makers in India have stepped onto the scene, taking basics such as besan laddoo, khoya barfi, kaju katli et al a notch higher by introducing variants like 24-carat gold varq Pistachio Laddoo, Caramel Pedha, and Besan Truffle.
While their name may be Gur Chini, the brand focuses on using healthier sugars for all their offerings. With two permanent stores in Delhi and presence across India and abroad, this luxury mithai brand in India is known for treats like Bavarian chocolate barfi, South American almond tacos, and pistachio paan, all made using the stevia plant for sweetness. They also use jaggery from sugarcane, palmyra, date plam, and nelon; four types of honey — Manuka, Buckwheat, Garchia, and Rosemary; and different dates such as Khadrawi, Kustaw, Deglet Noor, Medjool. Keeping sweets natural and healthy is their motto, and their low- and no-sugar options carry that even further, never compromising on taste.
Call them on +91 99998 99615 for their festive boxes.
Started by Sid Mathur of Impresario Hospitality (of Social and Smokehouse fame), Khoya seeks to bring back ancient Indian recipes of mithai while adding the modern tweak of thoughtful packaging (reminiscent of elegant French charm if you ask us). But don’t just go by its boxes — the mithai inside features exquisite concoctions like pink motichoor laddoo, Jammu chocolate, paan peda, and pista longe. With two stores in Delhi, Khoya is your go-to for understated elegance (other than the mouth-melting mithai, of course).
Call them on +91 99100 96940 for their festive boxes and customisation.
This brand celebrates the age-old art of making mithai, believes in ethically sourced produce, employs no artificial additives (only natural flavouring), and uses entirely recyclable boxes. Their packaging is done with as much care as the making of their mithai (their boxes have names like Petit 4, Sparkler, Famille, Savoury Square, and Rectangle Fix) The brainchild of chef duo Ashay Dhopatkar and Neha Lakhani, the former says that they always wondered why an Indian sweets couldn’t be given the same finesse and importance as its French counterpart. “Going forward, we want mithai to be just as relevant and admissible as its French counterparts like Belgian Chocolate or a classic French macaron,” adds Dhopatkar. And this led to their delectable sweets like Besan Truffle (besan laddoo with dark Belgian chocolate truffle filling), Caramel Pedha (Mathura ka peda with a dulce de leche centre), and Malterine Marmalade (tangy malta and tangerine with gurmandi almond paste) among others.
For rakhi they’ve done chaand thalis, i.e., mithai stacked in a moon-shaped thali. They’ve also introduced stuffed dates–from almonds to chocolate, rose & honey to orange peel, you’ve got a variety of flavours to pick from. And of course the regulars like salted caramel pedha are there. Their festive specials are available for order at +91 97111 55655.
Inspired by everyday objects, Berfila follows the belief of ‘quality, care, and creating unique products’. The newest kid on the block, it was started last year and operates out of a home kitchen in Gurgaon. With a focus on gifting, their design is muted finesse, with fun flavours thrown in like fudges in flavours of bubblegum, matcha, jamun & lemon, mango, strawberry; white chocolate and raspberry motichoor laddoo, ghiya barfi. They also have regular mithai such as coconut laddoo, milk cake, kalakand, khoya barfi, and such.
Call them on +91 9999721481 and +91 8375997836 to order.
If millennial luxury mithai in India is what you’re looking for, Nihira is the answer. Motichoor laddoos in flavours such as wine, champagne, and lavender; blueberry, elderflower, and cheesecake barfi; jalapeño and cheese namak paare — you can’t give this menu a miss. Using only organic ingredients, Nihira celebrates the fact that ‘mitha’ is the centre of any Indian auspicious occasion, supplementing these with their handcrafted mithai.
Their treats can be ordered by contacting them at +91 97171 22667.
Situated in Byculla, Bombay Sweet Shop reinvents traditional Indian sweets and mithais with a 100 percent vegetarian spin. Led by pastry chef Girish Nayak, who is known for his desserts at Toast and Tonic in Bengaluru, the shop doubles up as a snacking bar offering desserts like penguin-shaped Caramel Custard Popsicles and Coconut Caramel Patissa Fingers, among other delicacies. The shop is a the rose-hued, art deco-inspired trip down memory lane. The glass-front kitchen is a statement to showcase its inventive skills. Working up to appeal to the younger generation, it even comes with creative gifting and delivery options. There is aam papad lollipops, ghewar tarts, Drunken Motichoor Laddoo, Indian ‘gummies’, and even a live DIY chikki counter.
For rakhi they have introduced a variety of four boxes, each with elements that are reminiscent of childhood with your sibling. There’s the Magical Rakhi box with Malai Pedha and Ruby Chocolate Kaju Bon Bons, assembled to look like a rakhi. The Choco-Bandhan Box has Chocolate Coconut Caramel Patissa Bars and Ruby Chocolate Kaju Bon Bons, and the L’il One’s Rakhi bag comes with Chocolate Butterscotch Barks, Indian Gummies, Aam Papad Lollipop. The largest assortment of mithai is in the Bada Rakhi Bag, which has Malai Pedha, Ruby Chocolate Kaju Bon Bons, Bounty-Ful Boondi Ladoos, Mighty Motichoor Ladoo, Kaapi Pak, Ferrero Rocker Laddoo, Chocolate Butterscotch Barks, Indian Gummies and Everything Chikki Bar. Some of these also come with rakhis inside. Call them on +91 77770 11097 for further details or order online here.
All images: Courtesy brands