Just near the famous Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration (LBSNAA) in Mussoorie is a humble tea shop.

Run by 65-year-old Deepak Garg, Ganga Dhaba is a draw for everyone in the area.

In fact, the shop was set up in 1959, the same year as the Academy was started.

Deepak lost his father when he was eight years old — an event that put a lot of pressure on his mother, who was a science teacher at a local school.

In 1978, in a bid to ease some of this pressure, Deepak started a food joint Om Chinese, which is today known as Ganga Dhaba.

The change in name happened as people would often refer to the restaurant as Ganga Dhaba owing to its proximity to the Ganga hostel in the Academy.

Deepak is grateful to the officers of the Academy for the restaurant’s popularity.

“So many dishes on our menu today are because some officer came in and decided to teach us how to make them,” he shares.

“We never had a robust South Indian menu, and dishes like dosa and uttapam were taught to us by the officers.”

Food items at the Ganga Dhaba are made in a simple, homely manner.

Deepak says, “We do not have any cooks here, everything is made by us. In fact, my wife, Sussma, is the head cook here and we all pitch in – my son Abhishek, my daughter-in-law and I.”

If you happen to visit, don’t miss out on the Mughlai paratha and the aloo-pyaaz paratha, which are both hits on the menu.