Global Eats: Tehran Top Restaurant Picks
Looking for a new adventure? Look east...to the Middle East that is! Inspired by chef, Anthony Bourdain's jaunts around the world, we are profiling interesting restaurants in exotic locations. We turned to Iranian-American, Melody Bamdad, for her top picks on where to eat in Tehran.
At first sight, the hustle and bustle of the city of Tehran may seem a bit overwhelming. It's a busy metropolis seeped in culture. Tehran is much more than what first meets the eye. It's a modern, ancient and ever-changing city, all at the same time. The vibrant Persian culture permeates across the delicious cuisine (staples include rice, chicken, lamb, saffron (we could go on and on!)). Food remains an integral part of the culture. Melody has rounded up some top choices for "must-eat" locations in Tehran.
Alborz - Named after the iconic mountain range running through the northern part of Iran, Alborz is the place to go for quality kebab dishes. With a stylish, upscale ambience and a name that is well-known throughout the city, expect to fight for a seat at this popular eatery. Make sure you try your kebab with saffron-infused rice!
Divan - Craving a mix of modern and traditional Persian cuisine? Grab a table at Divan and indulge in luxury dining. This posh eatery offers great ambience for a special night out. The space has sweeping views of the stunning Alborz mountains to entertain you as you feast. The plating of each dish is impeccable and the chef puts his own spin on traditional dishes - we think we'll have the lamb shank.
Bix - If you are missing western food while you are exploring Tehran, look no further than Bix, Tehran's take on California cuisine in the Middle East. You'll find a scrumptious melange of pizza, sandwiches and salads. The restaurant is located in the shopping mall on Gandi Avenue. After you shop, enjoy the outdoor weather on sleek, white furniture. It's also a great spot for people watching.
Chai Bar - The most popular places to hang out in the city are coffee bars. Chai Bar offers a selection of expresso, coffee and elegant, Persian tea. Its location inside a beautiful garden offers a unique refuge from the bustling city. Grab small-bites off the menu after your caffeine-fix to complete your afternoon pick-me-up.
Before you book your travel, make sure you check on travel requirements and restrictions, if any, from your home country's government. We'd hate for you to make a restaurant reservation and not be able to keep it.
If you can't book your trip to Tehran just yet, but want a glimpse of the city, click over to the popular Humans of New York posts on Iran. And, check-out this Chelo Kebab recipe to try your hand at Persian cuisine. Safar be kheir (Bon voyage)!
Monsoon Group - Divan Restaurant