Delhi's Sharbat-e-Mohabbat kiosk owner to introduce special Holi sherbet

Story by  Tripti Nath | Posted by  Aasha Khosa | Date 23-03-2024
Mohd. Shuaib Chishti serving  customers at his Kiosk in Delhi's Jama Masjid area
Mohd. Shuaib Chishti serving customers at his Kiosk in Delhi's Jama Masjid area


Tripti Nath/New Delhi

The crowded road to Jama Masjid in old Delhi is lined with shops selling a variety of kebabs, biryani, breads and sweets but the one that attracts enviable footfall is the Sharbat-e-Mohabbat kiosk run by Mohd. Shuaib Chishti.

The USP (Unique Selling Proposition) of this unmissable kiosk is its ambience, delicious variety of sherbets, super-fast service, and choice of music.

Although the kiosk does pretty good business throughout the year, its earnings peak during the holy month of Ramzan when Muslims congregate in large numbers at Jama Masjid, the 17th-century mosque. Although Mohd, Shuaib observes 30 days of fasting, his kiosk popular by the name Habibi Shaikh Jama Masjid, remains open from 4 p.m. to 4 a.m.

For the remaining year, it opens from 4 p.m. to midnight. Mohd. Shuaib says that while he serves 1,500 customers every day, the numbers increase ten-fold during Ramzan.

Mohd. Shuaib, 24, who goes by the name of Kabir Khan on social media platforms, set up the kiosk a year back. Shuaib’s white Jubbah, goggles, Arabic-style headgear and black gloves are eye-catching and he serves sherbet with robotic speed. From a distance, he can pass off as a magician juggling glasses, jugs and ladles to dip out tempting sherbets from large copper vessels.

The front counter of the kiosk has two large copper vessels with readymade sherbet and a mixer. Ayats from the Holy Quaran are etched on a panel inside the kiosk.

Mohd. Shuaib cuts the melons swiftly and pours sherbets from the mixer jugs while keeping a kettle handy to pour boiling milk on dry nitrogen ice to create smoke. As a cloud of smoke billows out of his kiosk, passers by stop to watch the magic. 

The sherbets available in his booth include Sharbat e Mohabbat smoke, Sharbat e Mohabbat without smoke, Shahi Elaichi Smoke and without Smoke, Kesar Pista smoke and without smoke, Badam Thandai with and without smoke, Shahi Kesar Sharbat (Mohabbat e Fida, Shahi Illaychi (Aashiqui), Badam Thandai (Motivational, break up and patch up). 

He says that some sherbet names are derived from his life struggles. “Maine apni mohabbat sherbet me utar di hai. Ab yeh mohabbat logon ke dil me utarti hai,’’ he explains with a smile (I convey my love through the sherbets and this has helped me win the hearts of people.)

The price of sherbets ranges from Rs 60 to Rs 100.

Mohd. Shuaib Chishti serving sharbet to a woman customer

A large number of customers who are around during Iftar are also making his video on their phones. He serves clients, especially young ladies, in a ceremonial manner. While serving the ladies, he makes a respectful gesture acknowledging their presence by putting his left hand on his chest, hands over the straw, extends his right hand, and twirls the lady around before handing over the sherbet in a colorful plastic glass topped with rose petals. He showers rose petals on the buyers and gently inserts the straw in the corner of his mouth. He does all this without being intrusive.

Mohd. Shuaib claims to have worked in the kitchen of many five-star hotels. “I have been in the hotel industry for 12 years and have also worked as a bartender in the UAE. It is because of my experience in Dubai and Sharjah that I can make a glass of Sharbat in only 30 seconds. I chose to set up the sherbet kiosk to make everlasting connections with people.’’

He says, “Daulat to sab kamate hain. Mujhe shohrat kamani hai.” (Everybody earns but I want to earn name and fame).


Shuaib says he has got an overwhelming response not just from his customers-the most prominent being Congress leader Rahul Gandhi but also from top bloggers in Dubai and well-known Delhi-based Youtubers. “People from all communities and all walks of life come here to sample my Sherbets. I plan to introduce a surprise sherbet on Holi. Many young ladies come with their friends just to make a video of the way I serve them Sherbet.’’

Mohd. Chishti plays Arabic music and creates a smoky background by using dry nitrogen ice and boiled milk.

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