Shayan is one of the better Persian-Iranian restaurants in Dubai. It’s certainly one of the best in Deira. Located in the Swissôtel Al Ghurair on Omar Bin Al Khattab Road in Al Rigga, Shayan is a well decorated, fine dining affair with an elegant, if slightly confusing, Arabesque theme to its décor (as opposed to Persian).
The Arabian element is carried through in their menu where a section of Levantine classics compliments a well-represented collection of Persian-Iranian favourites. Chef Magsud Narimanzadeh and his culinary team have done a fantastic job of sprucing up many traditional dishes, particularly the starters. Unique to Shayan is Nargesi Esfenaj, an adaptation of a breakfast dish inspired by the Narcissus flower – it’s basically sautéed onion and spinach with a fried egg on top and is one of many vegetarian dishes available.
Before I move on to the Kebabs I’d like to draw your attention to the stews or Khoresh as they are called in Iran, specifically to the Khoresh Maygoo – Shrimp Stew. Fish and shrimp stews are popular throughout southern Iran. Known as Ghalieh Mahi (fish) or Maygoo (shrimp) they are tart, tangy and slightly spicy…and green due to the herbs which are used in the sauce. Not so Shayan’s Khoresh Maygoo, which has a tomato-based sauce. Try it, it’s excellent.
No self-respecting Persian-Iranian restaurant would be complete without a range of Kebabs (pronounced Ka-bob by the Iranians), and Shayan is no exception. From their meter-long Kabab Koobideh (minced kebab) to the more unusual Ghafghazi Kabab (rolled lamb and chicken fillet kebab), Shayan has something for everyone. Their mixed grills are called Takht-e-Jamshid (all meat and chicken) and Kabab Shayan (meat and seafood) – both are incredible. At AED236 and AED325 respectively, they’re not cheap (this would be a good time to use that Entertainer voucher). That said, taste and quality are amazing.
Round off your meal with some authentic Faloodeh (Fālūde), also known as Paloodeh (Pālūde), which is a translucent sorbet with short white starch noodles mixed in. I like it best with just a squeeze of fresh lime – OMG! Some add rose water and/or fruit syrup – overkill. Trust me, a splash of lime is all it needs. Shayan also serves traditional Iranian ice cream which is similar to the Turkish ice cream. I find them both way, way too sweet. But that’s just me.
Service at Shayan is excellent. Their staff are friendly and accommodating. Along with the venerable Shabestan at the Radisson Creek and Shandiz at the Emirates Concorde, Shayan represents the best of Persian-Iranian cuisine in the Deira area and is well worth a detour.
Waste NOT. Want NOT.