Love Persian food? Or food grilled up in the backyard in the summertime? Maybe both! Well, a new restaurant seeking to combine the two is opening soon in Grand Rapids.

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New Authentic Persian Restaurant Opening on 28th Street

Backyard Persian restaurant is coming to 5070 28th St. SE, Wood TV 8 reports. The new eatery is just west of I-96, near Costco and Target, in the space previously occupied by Moe's Southwest Grill.

According to Wood TV 8, the owner is Kourosh Shahbodaghloo, a restauranteur who lived in Grand Rapids until 1996 and recently relocated from Washington DC. In DC, Shahbodaghloo was a business partner in numerous restaurants. The pandemic brought him back home to GR.

The new restaurant will serve authentic Persian dishes with chicken, beef, and fish. Backyard Persian will also offer rice dishes, breads, and appetizers. Shahbodaghloo tells Wood TV 8 he'll be partnering with West Michigan butcher shop, Byron Center Meats, to get the special cuts he needs for Persian cuisine. Guests will be be able to watch chefs working in the open kitchen, grilling and preparing their meals.

Backyard Persian's kitchen also has an 18-inch clay tandoor oven from India and a custom grill from California that reaches 400 BTUs to cook food quickly and at the correct temperature, Wood TV 8 reports.

What are Some Traditional Persian Dishes?

Backyard Persian's menu hasn't been revealed yet - and maybe like me, you've not had a lot of Persian food - so what is Persian food like? What kind of dishes might we find at Backyard Persian?

According to Cooksmarts.com,

Main dishes are often combinations of rice or bread with meat, vegetables, beans, nuts, and fruits. Many Iranian dishes feature a distinct sourness that is often achieved through citrus, sumac, sour grape juice, and more. [They] often have vibrant colors... and are aromatic from the use of flowers, herbs, spices, and fruits.

Chef's Pencil shares the Top 25 Most Popular Persian Foods (Top Dishes of Iran). Their list includes:

  • Tahdig - TahDig meaning "bottom of the pot", is a crispy layer of rice, bread or potatoes, served as a side dish.
  • Khoresht-e Ghormeh - Lamb (or beef), red bean, and herb stew.
  • Chelo Kabab Koobideh - Ground meat seasoned with onion, salt, pepper, and spices on a kebab. Served with with rice, onion, and barbecued tomatoes.
  • Kuku Sabzi - Egg dish prepared with fresh herbs and spices, served in a hot pan and looks like a thick frittata or omelet.
  • Dolme - Grape leaves wrapped and stuffed with meat, rice, and herbs, served with plum sauce.
  • Baghali Polo ba Machine - Broadbean rice with lamb shanks, dill and saffron.

When is Backyard Persian Opening?

According to Wood TV 8, Shahbodaghloo purchased the 2,500-square-foot storefront in January and has been remodeling it since. Guests will find updated bathrooms and flooring, and of course - the newly reconfigured open kitchen.

While an exact grand opening has yet to be announced, Shahbodaghloo expects to open Backyard Persian within the next few weeks.

We'll update this post when an opening day is shared, along with a link to the new restaurant's menu.

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