Dubai’s food scene is so diverse that there is something to please everyone and saying that we do have so many nationalities residing here and it’s important to have your comfort food when you are away from home. There are many Iranians and expats who enjoy a juicy Kebab and of course how can we forget their delicious flavoured rice. In Dubai, we have plenty of restaurants claiming to serve the finest Iranian food and after trying a couple of restaurants over seven years I have found some of my favourite Iranian places, here in Dubai.
Iran zamin – This restaurant started back in 2003 and the quality of the food is what has made them quite a popular restaurant today. It’s usually busy and I love the chatter, the family ambience and of course the Kebabs, it is divine. I love the Dubai Marina branch, and apart from the usual Iranian dishes they even serve a few international dishes like Burgers, Sandwiches and some interesting mock-tails.
Enigma – Now this is a proper fine dining restaurant situated at the epic Palazzo Versace, earlier the concept of Enigma was quite different but since the last few years, it is serving modern and traditional Iranian dishes. The decor is rich and stylish and I usually go here for an occasion, the food is delightful and you won’t have any complaints. The kebabs are pretty good but one thing I cannot miss here is the Faludeh dessert and the Saffron Persian cake, you will fall in love with the flavours and look forward to coming back. The menu is quite extensive so you will be bound to visit again, to try some of their other bestselling dishes.
Rivas – I was told about this restaurant by one of my Iranian friends and after going through their social media page I was convinced I had to order their food and to be fair the pictures online do look appealing but it doesn’t do justice to how good the food actually is. It’s authentic and would remind you of home food which can give competition to some of the big restaurants here. I love the Lamp chops and the roasted chicken, both of the dishes are juicy, tender and full of vibrant flavours.
Ostadi – This restaurant is a legacy, one of the oldest restaurants in Dubai and to which many people swear by. I know a few friends who dine here twice a week, the meat is exotic, and the place is full of history. There are plenty of celebrities who have dined here including the Crown Prince Shaikh Hamdan bin Mohammed. These people are experts when it comes to serving the most delectable meal, and once you have here you will surely want to dine back again. If you happen to meet the owner ask him a bit about how Ostadi kebab started and he has some interesting stories to share. One place you cannot miss to try in Dubai.
Sofreh – JLT is slowly becoming a new hub of some of the most amazing restaurants the city has to offer. This restaurant had sent across some of their signature dishes a month back and genuinely I didn’t expect much but they proved me wrong. The food was moreish and luscious, to say the least, the menu is quite large but if you stick to some of the classics you won’t be disappointed. Their motto is to keep things as simple as possible without compromising on the taste, I loved the food here and I am sure you will too.
Anar – This restaurant has been part of Madinat Jumeirah for a while and they even have live entertainment on certain days of the week. It’s a favourite of many and the food is quite appealing too, sitting by the Madinat Jumeirah lake with a beautiful view of the Burj Al Arab especially during the winter months in their outdoor area is the best way to enjoy your meal. Some of my favourite dishes here are the Kebab Shashlik, and Kashk o bademjoon, you would fall in love with the divine flavours. Overall it’s a great place to dine with a relaxed atmosphere and good food.
Shabestan – It’s been a while since I visited Shabestan in Deira, it was quite a ride for me but I don’t regret it as the food was marvellous. It’s a old favourite of many Iranian families who like to soak in the culture and have an authentic meal. Visiting this restaurant is like being a part of a legacy as it started in 1984 and saying that they have still kept up with the times and continue to surprise guests with some of the classic dishes like Bahalah polo-ba-mahicheh (lamb shank) which is cooked for around 4-5 hours so you can imagine how tender and juicy the meat is going to be, some more dishes which I enjoy here are Chicken Stew (fesenjan-ba-morgh), Resteh Soup and the chelo rice. Another fun fact is that it is located in Radisson Blu Hotel which is also one of the first five-star hotel in Dubai which was inaugurated by His Highness of UAE.
Aghatti – This restaurant in La Mer is relatively new compared to the ones on the list but that doesn’t make it any less amazing. The decor is rich, and the food is modern but yet has an Iranian essence to it. When I dined here for the first time I promised myself that I get my family as well and I was so excited as not only my family but even my friends approved of this establishment. This is our usual hangout place if we are in La Mer. I love their selection of grills and I don’t mind binging on the tantalising meats. Would highly suggest this place to anyone who is looking for a place which has a modern touch but still maintains the old Iranian traditions via their food.
Farsi – This restaurant is my go-to place if I am craving something quick and light, I usually order takeout and it has never disappointed me. Their desserts are heavenly especially the Halwa and the Faludeh, they have a couple of branches in Dubai and I suggest you dine there unlike me as the food taste much more luscious and will tempt you to get back. I once tried a combo of their freshly baked bread and Ghormeh Sabzi which was probably the best I have had in a while. So do head here as you surely look forward to coming back again.
Persian food for me is comfort food, it is simple yet delicious. Usually, when I am on a high protein diet and don’t want to compromise on flavours this is the cuisine I look forward to the most. Over the years there are many restaurants in Dubai who have specialised in Iranian food but these few mentions remain my favourite.