400 S Elliott Rd Ste J, Chapel Hill, NC | Directions 2751435.931830 -79.026479
Wonderful Food, Great People – I have no experience at all with Persian food but I very much enjoyed my lunch here. The prices can be a little steep but the food and service are so good, it's easy to justify treating yourself. It was slow on the Tuesday I went (only one other customer when I arrived at noon) but that customer was a regular who eagerly related why he loved the restaurant so much. I enjoyed our conversation and the food and opted to bring back desserts for my coworkers. The baghlava and rughelah are obviously homemade and are stupendous. The khoresh I had (lamb, eggplant, yellow lentil, tomato, sun-dried lime) was fabulous. The lamb, eggplant, and lentils were cooked just right and the lime made the sauce shine. Their basmati rice was cooked perfectly, too. I can't wait to go back to try something else on their menu.
Consistently Excellent – Small menu yes, slow service (it's usually just the owner himself so cut them some slack!) and they do run out of food (I would recommend NEVER going there later than 7pm), but wonderful food that is consistently good and absolutely freshly prepared. I prefer the polo (rice) dishes over the kebabs, but I know the kebabs are excellent too.
Perfect for when you want something a little different... – My husband and I floated in here one evening and were pleasantly suprised. He and I are both Ivy League Culinary School grads and consider ourselves "adventurous" eaters, we generally prefer places with character rather than pizazz. The dining room feels cafe-ish, nothing fancy. The whole place was very, very clean, even the restrooms. I am pretty sure our waiter was one of the owners, and he was so kind. If you like Indian and Middle Eastern foods you will LOVE it! The food was fantastic!!! We are so excited that this gem is in the neighborhood. And so reasonably priced that you can afford to pick it up on the way home when you don't feel like cooking. I can't wait to go back and try something else. Be sure to get a morsel of the pistachio baclava! You'll freak out!!
Family run, unique food – This is a small family-run restaurant in Chapel Hill. A reviewer below criticized them for running out of food, but given this is a small family run operation, I can forgive that. I recommend going for lunch on the weekend. Do not expect quick service because the owners run the place and prepare the food themselves and sometimes, they don't have the help they need. A side from that, the food is excellent! I recommend trying the Nun o Panir as an appetizer which is served with the most amazing feta you've ever tasted. Also the Fesenjun is excellent and has a sweet flavor that I have not experienced in any other ethnic cuisine.
Also, the sweet tea is amazing. It's a proprietary blend. You have to try it to believe it.
Off the Beaten Path – I'm a huge fan of this intimate Persian dining experience. My Persian friends turned me on to this mom-and-pop restaurant which provides simple but delicious Persian food.
Expect waits on Friday and Saturday nights as the owner is the only waiter and his wife the only cook!
Ran out of food?!?!?!?? – We walked in to the restaurant at 8 pm last saturday night, and the owner said he ran out of food. What?? What kind of restaurant runs out of food on a saturday night? I hardly think we'll be going there again.
Quite nice – Fine preparation on some unusual dishes in a basic but accomodating and family-friendly atmosphere. Tasty and filling, and not too expensive. Good choice on the hit-or-miss Chapel Hill dining scene.
Yum! – A delightful small-scale Persian resturant run by a wonderful family. The food is basic but delicious and always leaves me with a happy stomach. I've been to more extravagant Persian restaurants but Parvaneh's simplicity is endearing and slightly addictive. Both the food and the family keep me coming back again and again. The atmosphere is relaxed and comfortable. The dishes are authentic and pure. This place won't necessarily knock your socks off, but the good food will keep you smiling and highly satisfied.
Persian? – This is hardly a persian restuarant- the lunch dishes you can get about anywhere (kebabs and chicken salad). For dinner, there are a couple of Persian dishes (fesenjun, gormeh sabzi), but at the price, I'd recommend getting a persian cookbook and doing it yourself.
The telling sign is that there are more *drink* choices than dinner choices.
Worth a visit – Located in an unobtrusive strip mall amidst a senior center, a vacuum cleaner repair shop, and a shoe doctor, is this terrific Persian restaurant. Featuring an array of kebabs for all palates, but with plenty of food for vegetarians too, Cafe Parvaneh is a cozy spot to experience excellent cuisine and warm service.
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