Championing Local Food, Meghalaya’s Mei-Ramew Cafés Are Run & Helmed By Women

Mei-Ramew Café are quaint eateries scattered across the state's charming towns and villages

by Tejashee Kashyap
Championing Local Food, Meghalaya’s Mei-Ramew Cafés Are Run & Helmed By Women

Nestled amidst the verdant hills and misty landscapes of Meghalaya lies a culinary oasis. Mei-Ramew Café is a quant one scattered across the state’s charming towns and villages, serving not just food but stories, traditions, and a heartfelt connection to the land. Translating as Mother Earth, these cafes, as their name implies, are a tribute to the Earth and to its ability to sustain human life.

Meghalaya’s Mei-Ramew Cafés

 

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A post shared by Dial Muktieh (@meiramew_cafe)


The North East Slow Food & Agrobiodiversity Society (NESFAS) promoted the idea of Mei-ramew, which emphasises regional food and ingredients while also enhancing people’s quality of life, fostering food entrepreneurship, and bolstering the rural economy. At a time when people are more open to trying new cuisines and delicacies, this indigenous cafe model has the potential to be a profitable business.

Step into this cafe, and you’re immediately enveloped in a warm, inviting atmosphere that resonates with the spirit of Meghalaya. The décor is a fusion of traditional elements and contemporary aesthetics, creating a space that feels both timeless and modern. Adorned with vibrant textiles, intricate bamboo furniture, and indigenous artworks, the restaurant tells a unique story of Meghalaya’s cultural tapestry. The primary goal is to stimulate food entrepreneurship and assist the local economy. Additionally, they promote traditional cuisine obtained from the environment and communal well-being.

Khweng, a village in Meghalaya’s Ri-Bhoi district, has two Mei-ramew run by Kong Plantina Kharmujai and Kong Dial. These eateries highlight traditional Bhoi-Khasi food.

Also Read: Taste Monsoon In A Glass With Cherrapunji Gin, Meghalaya’s New Mixology Marvel!

What To Eat Here?

 

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A post shared by Dial Muktieh (@meiramew_cafe)


It’s not just the ambience that sets Mei-Ramew Cafés apart; it’s the culinary experience they offer. At the heart of their menus are traditional Khasi dishes lovingly prepared using locally sourced, organic ingredients.

In addition to freshly picked wild greens from the garden, rice cooked in chicken broth (Ja syrtah), pumpkin curry, banana flower salad, and bamboo steamed paddy fish with bamboo shoots are among the dishes that are frequently served. Khaw saw, also known as red khasi rice, doh syiar tyndong, and doh sniang tyndong are dishes that are prepared with chicken and pork cooked in bamboo tubes. The cuisine is prepared using traditional methods, such as the Tyndong, a zero-waste, sustainable method of cooking, or cooking in a bamboo tube.

Additionally, every month, NESFAS organises a Mei-Ramew Farmers’ Market in Shillong, to raise awareness about Indigenous Food Systems. Through initiatives like organic farming workshops and artisanal craft fairs, they empower local communities and preserve Meghalaya’s natural and cultural heritage.

So, come, immerse yourself in these Mei-Ramew Cafés in this enchanting land.

When: 8 am–6 pm

Cover image credits: Instagram/Mei-Ramew Cafe