Shayan is one of the better Persian-Iranian restaurants in Dubai. It’s certainly one of the most upmarket (= expensive) and well designed. It’s also one of the most unknown. Out of about ten Iranians I’ve asked over the past couple of weeks, only two or three have heard about the place. Only one has been.
If you like the food at Shahrzad, Hyatt Regency then you will probably like the food at Shayan. A little bluebird told me that they headhunted Magsud, the head chef from Shahrzad. Their menu is very well presented and includes everything a restaurant of this calibre should; from soups and starters to kebabs and khoreshts (stews) and finally desserts. I find it unfortunate that they have recently added a Levantine section to their menu, which I feel will only confuse everyone in the same way Indian restaurants which offer Chinese food do.
The food at Shayan is very good. It has variety, attention to detail and a sense of occasion, three important elements lacking in many other Iranian restaurants – well done Chef Magsud. And as with most Persian-Iranian restaurants, vegetarians and pescatarians will have much to choose from. In this case however, in addition to the Mirza Ghasemi, Kashk-e Bademjan and Ash, Mansour has gone the extra mile by including veggie versions of classic Khoreshts such as Karafs (celery) and Bamiya (ladies fingers or okra). I think that so considerate of them – well done.
Shayan has everything yet, like a fireworks display which hasn’t yet gone off, I feel it still hasn’t managed to realise its true potential. The food is very, very good. Service too is very, very good. And the interior decoration…okay, that’s very, very good too. What it lacks is ambiance and soul. But that will come. So if you are looking for a high-end, authentic Persian-Iranian meal, look no further than Shayan.