We decided to checkout a Persian restaurant, that is somewhat close to Central Park and within walkable distance from my work. This is a new restaurant that has been opened for around 3+ months already. In Los Angeles, they have their share of Persian, so it’d be interesting to see how does NYC fare for this cuisine. The restaurant entrance is a little discreet. The door leads to the second floor which is where the restaurant sits. We were able to walk-in for 2 at 5:30 PM without reservations, though the restaurant filled up somewhat afterwards.
Ambiance & Service
The interior was nicely decorated in that there’s a lot of exposed bricks, lamps, and candles all over. It has a good feel in general.
The service was pretty bad and below expectations. I’m not sure if it’s because they are still figuring things out, but my waitress didn’t bring my drinks till the very end of dinner for some reason. She apologized for forgetting, but the damage had already been done. We observed other tables get their drinks and food pretty swiftly, whereas ours came out lethargically. I flagged down one of the more capable English-speaking waiters, and said that we ordered these drinks, but they hadn’t come out yet. I pointed to the Doogh and Khak Shir specifically, and despite this, they still forgot the Khak Shir until the end of dinner.
To make matters worse, I noticed on my bill that there was an operating fee. I checked the menu, and there was no indicator that they would charge that. Also, they presented two totals, one with cash and one without. I have a rule about this, so you can imagine how tip was left.
The Doogh ($6) was a chilled, fizzy, and savory yogurt based drink. It was strange to me because it had bubbles, but with yogurt and sweetness. It just wasn’t pleasant to drink, considering my partner decided they didn’t like it at all and gave it to me.
The Sharbat-e Khakeshir ($6) was a Persian summer drink, made with teff seeds, sugar, mint, and water. This was actually quite good and complemented our food well. It gives it a nice, fresh contrast to the heaviness of the rice and food.
The Chelo Kabab Koobideh ($28) came with ground lamb and beef kebab with aromatic spices and saffron, served with basmati rice, grilled tomato, onion, lemon, and fresh basil. The kebab was well seasoned, but everything else was fairly one dimensional and not a lot of flavors. In Los Angeles, you had the option of adding berries to your rice, and they sometimes give you some yogurt as well. I think comparatively, the food here is pretty plain and unmemorable. For the price, they do give you a good amount of rice, if that’s your thing.
The Fesenjoon ($32) comes a braised bone-in chicken served in a thick sweet and sour saffron sauce with crushed walnuts, pomegranate molasses, and basmati rice. The sauce was probably the saving grace of our dinner in that it helped give the rice some flavors and textures. The chicken itself was dry for dark meat, but it was decent. For the price, it seemed expensive for what it was.
If you’re craving for Persian, I suppose you can checkout Nasrin’s Kitchen if you’re in the area. However be warned that the service is not great, and there’s an operating service fee that was unannounced. The food itself is pretty one dimensional, and I highly doubt we went off script when we were ordering our courses.
Service was very authentic and nice. Ambience was incredible with Persian music. The food was so delicious and different from any middle eastern cuisine I’ve had here in nyc.
The food here was average at best. This Yelper is from California, so I’m a bit surprised that they haven’t had their fair share of Persian already to compare to.
Delicious food!!! People are so lovely and nice. It’s a very cozy and homey vibe- so it’s definitely not one of these turn and burn restaurants where you feel rushed and pressured. Come if you are ok with a bit of a slower place from other NYC restaurants- and trust me it’s worth it, a refreshing pace.
It does have a very rustic vibe, but the issue is that the service was exponentially slower than desired, let alone flawed. When I was still eating my Fesenjoon, the waiter started grabbing the plate. I told him to hold off because we’re still finishing off the rest. Maybe it’s atypical that diners clean their plates, but I was a bit irked they were quick to clean our table.
- Sep 22, 2023 - Initial revision.