Our party of eight had dinner at Shalizaar in Belmont the day before Thanksgiving. We ordered family style and most of the food came on one giant platter so I wasn’t always sure what I was eating, but it was all good.
The usual complimentary Persian flat bread wrap with herbs, walnuts and cheese has never done much for me but the flat bread here (baked on the premises) is really good.
My prior kebob experiences have generally been unexciting so I usually avoid ordering kebabs in favor of more complex sounding dishes. Big mistake! Shalizaar demolished that prejudice with some excellent kebobs—my favorites were the salmon kebab and one of our two chicken kebabs which was especially juicy and flavorful (sorry, I’m not sure which one it was and our other chicken kebob was merely pretty good). I am partial to lamb especially in Middle Eastern restaurants but the lamb kebob was less interesting than most of the others and not as juicy.
I had high hopes for the ghormeh sabzi (beef stew with spinach and kidney beans) but while good it was not quite as intense as I had hoped. It tasted more interesting on the Tah Dig appetizer where the crispy rice added nice texture and flavor that complemented the stew more effectively than regular rice. The other stew on the Tah Dig (beef with split peas) was even better.
The other stew item we had was the fesenjan (chicken with pomegranate sauce). It was interesting but it didn’t quite work for me. I only got a couple of bites of this one and would definitely try it again to see if I might acquire a taste for it with a little more exposure.
I prefer Shalizaar’s doogh to the version at nearby Afghan Kabul.
The service was generally gracious but declined in attentiveness as the evening progressed. The décor is very nice and the lighting low. The setting is elegant enough for a romantic date but most of the diners were very casually dressed.
300 El Camino Real, Belmont, CA 94002
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