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San Francisco Bay Area Persian San Rafael

Persian in San Rafael - Apadana, Cafe Papillion, Jasmine Market, Hatam

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Persian in San Rafael - Apadana, Cafe Papillion, Jasmine Market, Hatam

rworange | Jan 1, 2007 02:18 AM

OK, I wasn't trying but I came across three Persian joints in San Rafael and was wondering how they were.

The first was Apadana on East Francisco. It was really Azteca Market that caught my eye in this little strip mall and as I drove in I noticed Apadana.

This place smells so good and I had just stuffed myself silly elsewhere ... but the aroma of the food here almost made me hungry again.

They were out of menus, but here's a really nice review in the Marin Independant Journal.
http://www.marinij.com/dining/ci_4444235

The owner said they were open for about six months and that in 2007 they would be starting lunch service. The review says that once a month there is belly dancing. It really is a nice little restaurant and there is kind of a water view.

About Apadana in Persia
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apadana

So, then I stop by Montecito Plaza and lo and behold there's a Persian restaurant and Persian market ... what are the chances?

Didn't have time to stop by Jasmine Market, but I did pick up a menu and scope out Cafe Papillon. It gets a number of good mentions on the web especially for the fesenjoon.

They have a little bakery in front that sells French pastries like napoleans as well as mid-Eastern baked goods like baklava. Didn't notice till I got home that they have Persian ice cream ... darn.

Other than ice cream I know zilch about Persian food. Some interesting stuff on the menu:
- Tahdigh - bottom of rice pot, crunchy part of the rice that is closest to the fire with gheyma stew poured on top
- Gheyma - eggplant stew with lean beef cooked in fresh tomato sauce with yellow lentils

I didn't see Hatam, but in looking up the other places, I came across yet another Persian grocery and market ... nearish the others. Here's a nice review.
http://www.metroactive.com/bohemian/0...

A few brief mentions of Persian in San Rafael from an old 2002 Chowhound post.
http://www.chowhound.com/topics/19153

San Rafael has these little ethnic pockets ... like the 2 1/2 Cuban restaurants.

So anyone tried any of these places? any reccomendations?

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