Haha. Now that we have got your attention, let’s make it clear that there is absolutely nothing sansani or breaking about this story.
This is a story about a famous yet unassuming paanwalla in Juhu, Mumbai. A paan bhandar that supplies paans to celebrities and the who’s who of suburban Mumbai.
You’d be surprised to know, many actors and actresses from television to Bollywood stars, have all had paan from Brijwasi Pan Bhandar. Kareena Kapoor, Ganesh Acharya (his childhood friend), Siddharth Malhotra, Amisha Patel, Shahid Kapoor, Mika Singh, Atif Aslam and many more have all sampled his delicious paan.
It is located opposite Options, a large departmental store at Vile Parle Shopping Centre. The owner Jeetan Sharma is also fondly referred to as Jitu Bhai. This shop has been in the market for approximately 60 years now, his father would run the shop before him and now the son continues the legacy.
Chef Sanjeev Kapoor also paid a visit to their shop and it was great to have him there said Jitu Bhai. Many television artists, foreigners, tourists also come to try their famous paan. Their business is largely dependent on paan and they majorly sell tobacco-free paan. They even supply their paan to major events.
They also have an outlet at London in Southhall which is managed by his maternal uncle. His work has also taken him abroad to supply paans at functions to places such as Dubai, Indonesia, Bali.
At their shop, they have around 280 varieties of paan, the most famous one, ‘Ice Paan’, which is tobacco free. There is also this unbelievable paan known as a ‘Fire Paan’.
The shop opens at 8 in the morning to 12:30 midnight. Four people operate in shifts including the owner, Jitu Bhai.
“People say, if one has paan, their mouth turns red but that’s not the truth”, says Jitu Bhai. We also have a pan that costs Rs.36000/ which has powdered gold is added to it. This paan is specially exported to Dubai.
In the midst of our conversation he told us a couple of years ago, a man from Kurla used to come to get some paan and say “Bhai k liye pan jaraha, aacha band”. Jitu Bhai thought it was his brother but later on through a source, he was told, it goes to Dubai. OMG!
Do visit this paan bandar for the most mouth-watering paans imaginable. Here’s a clip of me trying their famous Fire Paan.