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Persian food in Westwood

What do you all think is the best Persian in Westwood? There are many online discussions but not many recent ones. I know there is wonderful Persian in other parts of LA but I need a nice place in Westwood (so leave out the order-at-the-counter places). I have always liked Shaherzad but haven't tried many of the others recently. Opinions?

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  1. imho, it depends what you order.
    some dishes are "the best" in one restaurant, while others are "the best" at others.

    for me, since i normally order vegetarian dishes, shamshiri grill is "the best."
    i like that their grape leaves are stuffed with a spicy lentil paste rather than oily rice.
    i like that they offer a vegetarian version of almost all of their stews.
    terrific feta
    i really like their adas polo and their ghormeh sabzi.
    their bread with is baked to order in an oven located in the main dining area is terrific.
    i like their hummus
    my daughter likes their shish kabab which is made with filet.
    in my meat eating days i liked their lamb dishes.

    6 Replies
    1. re: westsidegal

      I really like Shamshiri. Great lunch specials under $10. Dinner entrees are huge. I like their lamb koobideh and their chicken shawarma (more moist than the beef). Good shirazi salad.

      1. re: nosh

        +3 Shamshiri. Especially the gormeh sabzi with lamb neck.

        Thought the kebabs and koobidehs were drier at Javan.

        1. re: nosh

          Another vote for Shamshiri. Good food and plenty of it.

          1. re: nosh

            Went their once - on your recommendation. Thumbs up!

          2. re: westsidegal

            Agree on Shamshiri. There lamb shank is very good too as is the chicken with bone. The lentil rice is very good and my daughter loves the cherry rice.

          3. In that area I like Javan and Shaherzad, they are more traditional Persian than Shamshiri Grill. I used to like Shamshiri in Westwood and the original location in Hollywood years ago before they became the Grill and added all sorts of non-Persian dishes like hummus and feta. Their fresh bread is pretty good though

            5 Replies
            1. re: Ernie

              little confused by your post since Shaherzad also serves feta (Greek Salad, Sabzi Khordan w/ feta), Hummus, etc.

              1. re: westsidegal

                It is an epidemic in Persian restaurants these days, but I feel that Shaherzad and Javan do the straight up Persian dishes better than Shamshiri Grill, e.g., fesenjan, kashke bademjan, borani, etc.

                Unlike Shamshiri Grill you won't find things like wraps, Caesar salads and falafel. SG has become the Cheescake Factory of "Persian" places now

                1. re: westsidegal

                  Yeah. I'm pretty sure falafel and hummus are not part of Persian cuisine.

                  But variations of feta and sabzi would be.

                2. re: Ernie

                  Persian restaurants should be rated according to their TAHDIG,
                  (golden crusted rice!)
                  In this regard, Javan ranks highest in Westwood area.

                  1. re: VenusCafe

                    *LOVE* their tahdig. But I don't frequent other Persian restaurants, so I don't know how they compare....

                  1. I'm rather fond of the fish preparation at Javan.

                    Down the street, the zereshk polo is quite good at Flame International (corner of Corinth & Santa Monica, next to Nanbankan).

                    Baran is closed. It's been replaced by Farsi Cafe (which I have yet to try).

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: J.L.

                      Yeah. barsian is closed. Now Farsi cafe.

                      There's also a newish joint called Taste of Persia which serves a grandmotherly version of ash veshteh.

                    2. as an addendum, not an answer to your quest for a "nice" persian restaurant,
                      i am a big fan of attari sandwich shop.

                      n.b. that although their address is show as being westwood blvd, the true entrance to the place is around the corner.

                      4 Replies
                      1. re: westsidegal

                        WG, do you remember if they make a few vegetarian sandwiches at attari ?

                        I like it too but I haven't been in over a year or longer.

                        1. re: kevin

                          they make at least one.
                          they also make a vegetarian soup that is out of this world.
                          also, their shirazi salad, imho, is superior to the other shirazi salads served around town.

                        2. re: westsidegal

                          Big fan of Aattari Sandwich. Too bad the place isn't bigger. I've gone and had to sit on a street curb a couple times it was so crowded.

                          1. re: westsidegal

                            if you want a nicer ambiance you can eat at Attari Grill, adjacent to the sandwich shop. They will serve anything from the cafe menu at the restaurant.

                          2. +1 to Javan - very good quality meat and much less crowded/better service than Shaherzad. The bread was not freshly made though. I also like Attari but the menu is limited.
                            I've only had catering from Shamshiri and it was always pretty mediocre so I haven't tried the restaurant.

                            1. I'll probably get flamed for saying this, but I've found most persian places to be fairly similar - never been disappointed, nor have I been so blown away that others have paled in comparison. This includes the Armenian places in Burbank/Glendale.

                              Actually, I'd probably include most middle eastern food in this category. Some places may have a dish or two that stands out, but overall the quality is pretty even...and usually fairly good.

                              4 Replies
                              1. re: manku

                                <<never been disappointed>>

                                to experience some disappointment, i nominate King's Kabob on sawtelle near sepulveda. pretty awful across the board, imho

                                (now i will be the one getting flamed)

                                1. re: westsidegal

                                  It's not Persian food but rather Egyptian and Greek. I don't think there are many (any?) other places that offer Egyptian breakfast fare in LA.


                                  1. re: Servorg

                                    never will their food pass my lips again.
                                    imho, yuck cubed.

                                    1. re: westsidegal

                                      Went twice. Had gyro's both times. Liked them enough I'd go a third time if in the area. I'd still like to try their Egyptian breakfast sometime.

                              2. Darya is my favorite but I have not been to all that many. Agree with Manku on the the greater similarities than differences.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: Ciao Bob

                                  It's weird in that there is no excessively fine dining version of Persian food in LA.

                                  Like for instance no $100 to $125 tasting menu or omakase style Persian gourmet restaurant anywhere in LA.

                                  Food for the old thought.

                                2. I tried Taste of Tehran tonight - I don't know much about Persian cuisine, but I thought it was excellent. The eggplant dip, quinoa salad, and all of the meats (but especially the beef filet) stood out in particular.

                                  1. I love Flame International for their contemporary interior and fresh modern/hipster servers. They also have lots of large format video monitors on which they showed persian dance videos...it was kinda vegas. My party which included Persian visiting the area like the ambiance a lot. I always love their lake fish but everything is good. Persian food is great for vegetarians....just omit the kabobs!