It’s the season for hilsa, the intoxicating fish rightly considered the king of seafood. The monsoon is the best time to sample hilsa (known as ilish in Bengali) and markets and restaurant tables are brimming with the fish. If you’re in Kolkata, get a bellyful of the stuff at the Hilsa Festival. Here’s a quick round-up.
6th Sundarban Hilsa Festival
Spread over three days, the Sundarban Hilsa Festival is an immersive trip. Visit tiger reserves, a colonial bungalow, take a safari in the world’s largest mangrove forest and eat hilsa, cooked in a variety of ways, for every meal.
When: Friday, August 16 onwards.
Where: Sealdah Railway Station, Raja Bazaar.
Hilsa Festival at the Ganges
Organised by Vivada Cruises, this trip involves sailing down the Ganges as you feast on hilsa dishes such as ilish bhaja (fried hilsa) and ilish bhapa (steamed hilsa).
When: Sunday, August 11 onward.
Where: Millenium Park Vivada Cruise Jetty, Strand Road.
Ilsheguri – Gangay Bhese Padmar Ilish
Learn more about hilsa at this festival to celebrate both the fish and Independence day. Take a workshop on cooking hilsa and have a sumptuous meal on the banks of the Ganges.
When: Thursday, August 15 at 6pm.
Where: West Bengal Tourist Jetty, BBD Road.
For more food and drinks events, see here.