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ISO: some great Persian food in downtown Toronto!

Sheikah Jun 16, 2010 04:32 PM

Title says it all! I've been having a bit of a craving for some good Persian food lately and was wondering if there are any places in downtown Toronto that people would recommend...?

Thanks in advance! :)

  1. w
    Winsum Feb 1, 2011 02:19 PM

    Pomegranate would be my definite recommendation, every time i've been there i've had great food with good and very friendly service. Also, there is a great cookbook I would also recommend. I got really interested in Persian food after having been to Pomegranate a couple of times and asked around for a good Persian cookbook so I could make some things at home. The answer I got from the Iranians i'd asked was 'New Food of Life' by Najmieh Batmanglij. Its got just about every recipe of real traditional persian foods. So far i've found basically all of Pomegranate's menu in there and tried to replicate it.

    1. m
      madhatt Jun 21, 2010 09:22 AM

      I believe Akram's Shoppe in Kensington is Persian -- I could be wrong.

      Right now they have a $3.99 special hot plate. You get one main item, salad and rice. Very good!

      2 Replies
      1. re: madhatt
        jmcginley Jun 22, 2010 07:42 PM

        I can't speak for how Persian it is, but I second the Little House of Kebobs recommendation (near Yonge & Dundas). The kebabs are cooked fresh when you order them, and the rice is great! Ensure you order the rice with wolfberries ($1 extra) and the crusty part from the bottom of the pot. The roasted tomato is great. A LOT of food.

        The Little House Kebobs
        357 Yonge St, Toronto, ON M5B1S1, CA

        1. re: madhatt
          Tallcooldrink Nov 12, 2010 06:30 PM

          Akram's in Kensington is Syrian.

        2. a
          akhorasanee Jun 21, 2010 09:17 AM

          I would reccomend restaurant darvaish on yonge (close to wellesley)- its the closest I've found in downtown that comes close tome some of teh restaurant in Finch )i.e. Patough)

          I did NOT LIKE lil house of kebobs
          Banu is a lil overrated- meat is good but way too pricey for teh calibre of food
          I ahve not yet tried pomegranate but ahve heard positive things

          777 Queen St West, Toronto, ON M6J 1G1, CA

          6347 Yonge St, Toronto, ON M2M3X7, CA

          1 Reply
          1. re: akhorasanee
            shekamoo Jun 21, 2010 03:33 PM

            Darvish is horrible, almost as horrible as Patough. so I guess I agree about the part where you say they come close to each other. Banu is a bit pricey, but not in the same league as these places. Any given day, I would rather pay Banu prices than eat whatever passes for Persian food in these places.

            777 Queen St West, Toronto, ON M6J 1G1, CA

            6347 Yonge St, Toronto, ON M2M3X7, CA

          2. z
            ziggystardust Jun 18, 2010 07:44 AM

            I also recommend Pomegranate/Shehrezade, but there's another place too. On Yonge, just north of Dundas there's a place called Little House of Kebobs. I'd walked by it a hundred times and thought it was just another low rent shawarma/falafel place. One day a Persian friend took me there and I was amazed. Very good Persian kebobs, very authentic (the whole place was speaking Farsi, my friend commented on this) and not expensive. It lacks the atmosphere and isn't as delicate as Pomegranate, but if you're in the area, give it a try.

            3 Replies
            1. re: ziggystardust
              Flexitarian Jun 18, 2010 08:21 AM

              Camros on the south side of Hayden St just east of Yonge has the most incredible vegetarian organic Persian food. It's a small space with a few tables for sitting and they also have take out. No table service as it's more of a place to eat than dine really.

              25 Hayden St, Toronto, ON M4Y, CA

              1. re: Flexitarian
                KitchenVoodoo Jun 22, 2010 08:43 PM

                I love Camros - very clean and light food, ideal for lunch! Their food is incredibly healthy and fresh - best option in the area for lunch.

                25 Hayden St, Toronto, ON M4Y, CA

              2. re: ziggystardust
                shekamoo Jun 20, 2010 08:06 AM

                I must say that the mere presence of Farsi speaking people in a Persian restaurant is a poor indicator of quality in general. Most Iranians would frequent Persian joints just because of the familiarity of the food, all the while complaining about the quality of the food they are being served. this has always left bewildered, but I am certain is not a Persian-exclusive behavioral trait. do not however take this as a negative verdict on House of Kebobs, which has never tempted me to give it a try

              3. shekamoo Jun 18, 2010 04:28 AM

                Pomegranate/shehrezade or Banu. there are no other viable options. Pomegranate for stews and some of the rice dishes, shehrezade for dizi and kebabs, banu for some more exotic items.

                777 Queen St West, Toronto, ON M6J 1G1, CA

                1. d
                  DoNutAlter Jun 17, 2010 04:39 AM

                  Pomegranate can be quite busy, so you should make reservations if you're going. Alternatively, Sheherzade, their sister restaurant next door, often has room, and they have my favourite dish in either place, abgusht (dizi), which is an amazing slow cooked lamb stew.

                  1. k
                    kitfo Jun 16, 2010 06:00 PM

                    We like the Pomegranate on College, and were introduced to it originally by a Persian friend who said there weren't many other decent (non-fast-food-y) Persian restaurants around. They serve stews showcasing the complex flavours that drew me to this cuisine in the first place. Lovely dips and spreads too - parvardeh olives are a personal favorite. And homemade saffron / rose water / pistachio ice cream for dessert!

                    For kebabs, try Banu Iranian Kabob Vodka Bar on Queen. It's a bit pricey, but the meat is of a much better quality (and more interesting cuts) than most kebab places, plus there's about 20 different kinds of vodka at the bar and interesting fruit juices.

                    Just writing about Persian food is making me hungry...I think I'll head up to Super Khorak tonight - the staff may be a bit rude sometimes, but you gotta give a little love to a place that can sell you a big tub of Persian ice cream 24 hours a day.

                    777 Queen St West, Toronto, ON M6J 1G1, CA

                    1. r
                      raebmv Jun 16, 2010 05:46 PM

                      Pomegranate would seem to be the obvious recommendation here.

                      420 College St, Toronto, ON M5T1T3, CA

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