Prince of Persia
Time Out Says
In the case of the Prince of Persia, the answer is to climb a majestic set of stairs, walk through an abandoned atrium, then head outdoors before coming to the restaurant entrance. But like all treasure hunts, the end is met with a reward.
The dining room is beautifully appointed, palatial and classy without being over the top. The tan upholstery is soothing against the richly hued columns and metal etchings on the wall. There is even a lounge area with plates of dates and petit fours as well as coffee should one choose to wait there for company to arrive.
We take a while flicking through the bulky 20-page menu which seems unnecessarily long although some pages contain only two items. Each entry is detailed and descriptive – a handy guide for those unfamiliar with what’s in store. In order to get acquainted with the kitchen, we try the staples of Persian cuisine with a mind for textural balance: creamy dips, a fresh green, something stewed and grilled proteins.
The mast o khiar is a good opening act. A cousin of the Greek tzatziki and Indian raita, the cucumber and yogurt dip awakens the appetite, particularly in the absence of garlic, which incidentally plays a leading role along with fried onions in the kashke bademjan. The grilled eggplant with salty cheese is spread thinly over a shallow plate, making the dish seem bigger than it is and the food disappear quicker than we would like it to.
Then comes the mixed grill, a hefty platter of chicken pieces, ground meat and seafood. Beef is part of the usual selection, but the server had earlier noticed our hesitation while describing the dish and offered to replace beef with prawns (bonus points for the attentiveness and flexibility in our books.) The hammour is the star item along with the three types of accompanying rice. Everything is cooked well without being dried out. Still, we note that the flavours are generally similar to the Arabian grills than the more saffron-perfumed ones we expect.
We end with tea and faloodeh, a shaved ice dessert with frozen vermicelli cavorting with cherry, rose or saffron syrup. It’s cold and sweet and exotic all at once – the final treasure we’ve been waiting for.
The bill (for two)
1 x Mast O Khiar yogurt dip QR27
1 x Salad Sherazi QR29
1 x Kashke Bademjan Eggplant QR35
1 x mixed grill for two QR250
1 x Khoresh Gojeh Bademjan Stew QR50
1 x Faloodeh Shirazi QR25
2 x bottled water QR64
2 x Iranian tea QR50
By Time Out Doha staff | 28 Aug 2014
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