Phoochka"--just one word and " Jive Jol" immediately to almost all bengali people. The sour n salty tentul jol, the hot spicy alumakha with chola n lonka, then salpata in hand then the first water filled bite brings all moksha of the world. Phoochka can be found in various parts of India as golgappa, panipuri and in different recipes like with bhel, with dahi,pudina with papri but i hate those forms.My favorite one is the pure bengali one with jhal -jhal alumakha and then dipped into tok tok tentul jol,serving in salpata not in a boring plate or bowl. This is a matter of big debate which phoochkawala is the best as everyone and mostly girls claim that the one outside their college/school premises is the best. For me to name few, i will mention about the one outside Asutosh College,one at the victoria memorial entrance( there are though atleast a hundred), one close to the Lighthouse cinema hall in dharmatala, one just beside the Hatibagan post office and one in our karunamoyee-salt lake bus stand. My wife Piu is a crazy phooochka lover, she recommends one at the baguihati bazar ,who dips "Gondhoraj Lebu" to add extra favor to the tentul jol. My mom's favorite one at hatibagan as this guy can put so much green chili that the alumakha looks green not white. This eternal food has some amazing trivias,which sounds funny but they are all true my lord,like, 1. phocchkawala is an amazing statistician, they can count who is eating how many and which person belongs to which group, doesn't matter how big and diverse the crowd is, 2. girls always claim that they never ever get sick after eating phoochka( may be the low ph level of the tentul jol), 3. guys always claim that they can eat 50 phoochka at a time but always looses to the girls during the competition, 4. If the phoochkawala stand beside the municipality hydrain and if his "Gamcha" is dirty and he doesn't clip his nails the phoochka is more tastier , 4.the demand for a free phoochka popularly known as "Fau" is alwasy higher than the supply, 5. The final finish of mixing some spice, extra tentul with the regular tentul jol to end the game is the best always, 6. a bad recipe of phoochka if served, the phoochkawalas life could be in serious danger if it is to a group of girls, 7." Aro jhal dao" is the most frequently heard dialogue near a phoochka stall, 8.phocchkawala makes excellent " churmur" which is another amazing snack, but very few people care for it, 9.never ask a phoochkawala if his phoochka is fresh or not, it's an ultimate insult, 10. never refuse your girlfriend, fiance or wife if she demands to treat herself with phoochka from your wallet, that's the insult no girl can take. For first few years when my wife piu came to USA, i was very confused whom she misses more; her parents n family in India or the phoochkawalas, as she mentioned about it numerous times. I am not a very big fan of phoochka, neither is my dad or my fater-in-law, this is highly explainable "it's simply a food that god created for women. I am just conveying this blog to make them happy. Took 2 pics one at th gariahat under the flyover and one serving at piu's friend Prabrit's wedding. Both were evry good, i ate 5-6 and piu end the game with 20-25 as usual:). Hope my blogger friends will come up with more gastronomic comments and skits after reading this blog.