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Jun 26, 2013 02:10 PM

Persian/Armenian in Fresno

At the last minute, Beloved Spouse and I decided to make a mini-vacation of a work trip to Fresno, and, thanks to this board and local tips, had a good time. It seems we came during a cold snap: a mere 94 degrees F in the afternoon, though deep in Forestiere Gardens thermometers read in the low 80s.

We were interested in the fruits of Armenian immigration to the area, and were hungry when we arrived at Diana's, a family-run Persian/Armenian spot tucked back in a shopping mall off W. Shaw Ave. The husband and wife team were both warm hosts. Since I asked, she let us know exactly which dishes on the menu were Persian, which Armenian, which straddled both, and who made what. More Persian than we anticipated, but very good in its own right. Lentil soup, hummus and lightly spiced ground meat dolmas were delicious, as well as the Shirazi chopped salad, so when the Shish kebab, Barg kebab (filet mignon) and Koobideh (ground beef) arrived, pure deliciousness drove us to taste them all, but most kebabs wound up in a box. I did made room to taste their Persian ice cream - a delicate rosewater flavor and fragrance.
I'd come back and try the daily stews (“100% Persian!”) for $12.95.

3050 W. Shaw Ave. Suite 106
tel: 559 277 9500

We never did manage to find beerocks/bureks on this visit, but would appreciate some tips.

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  1. One mile north and one mile east of Diana's at the NW corner of Bullard and West.

    The Berrock Shoppe
    2016 W Bullard Ave
    (559) 439-0402

    choice of ground or shredded beef, they make a decent burger as well.

    Another 1.5 mi east and back on Shaw at the NE corner of Maroa is
    A.J.'s Armenian Cuisine
    5048 N Maroa Ave
    (559) 225-4580

    great kebobs, served in wraps rather than on the Armenian round bread that I prefer. Another nice family run place.

    1 Reply
    1. re: PolarBear

      Thanks for these. Next time we'll be better prepared.

      1. re: rmarisco

        George's has been our standby for years but seems to have become hit or miss whenever we phone in an order.

        Lately I've had good luck stopping in, grabbing a martini at the bar then ordering the lamb kebobs medium rare while chatting up the cook and owner/manager.

        If you're downtown the location in the Capitol Mall building always seems to do it right, Lamb shanks are off the charts as well.

      2. Another small Armenian ma and pa restaurant... great flavors in classic dishes, humble furnishings, difficult to communicate with owner - I love it.

        Yerevan Restaurant
        7747 N 1st St.
        Fresno, CA 93720
        (559) 432-4178

        2 Replies
        1. re: fresnohotspot

          Thanks for the heads up, is this a new location? Seem to recall them from a few years back.

          1. re: PolarBear

            Hey PB, you remember correctly. Yerevan has been around for over a dozen years... the owner just keeps plugging away serving old world dishes. It is tucked away in the Von's shopping center and hasn't changed much over the years.