Maryam Ghaznavi


Years of Participation


In Pakistan’s language of Urdu, Ma’am Saab means “lady boss” and Malika means “queen”, both of which quite literally define Chef/Owner Maryam Ghaznavi.

The force behind Ma’am Saab, and the first-ever Pakistani restaurant to grace the state, Malika, Maryam, along with her husband, Co-Owner and Creative Director Raheel Gauba, are bringing a taste of Pakistan culture and cuisine to the Lowcountry.

Between innovating and staying true to their roots, Chef/Co-Owner Maryam Ghaznavi and her husband/Co-Owner Raheel Gauba of Ma’am Saab and Malika Canteen restaurants in Charleston have created a standout culinary empire. Born in Pakistan, food was the center of the Ghaznavi household as Maryam’s mother, grandmother and sister all cooked Pakistani food. Maryam as the “chief taste tester” fostered a love for her culture’s staple dishes like Biryanis, Karahis, Saags and Kababs, and through many hours spent in the kitchen, became a chef herself.

Maryam and Raheel’s families both moved from Pakistan to Canada where the two met, and later relocated to the Lowcountry. The couple started a made-to-order food delivery service during COVID-19, showcasing the rich flavors of Pakistan and capturing the hearts and stomachs of locals. The duo went on to open Ma’am Saab at Charleston’s food hall, Workshop, the following year in 2020. Fast forward to May 2023, and the couple opened their highly-anticipated dream downtown restaurant, Ma’am Saab, while continuing to operate the two locations of their fast-casual Pakistani street food concept, Malika.

The couple is proud to open the first, and only Pakistani restaurants in South Carolina and the first Pakistani chef to host signature dinners two years in a row at Charleston Wine & Food Festival.
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