Bandar Restaurant, located at 845 Fourth Avenue, is an incredible culinary experience. The Gaslamp Quarter Association enjoyed an elegant Persian feast. The owner Behrooz received the Armand (lifetime achievement) Award at the 2016 Lamplighter Awards for serving guests incredibly at Bandar for over 20 years in the Gaslamp Quarter.
Sherry, Alex and Erin went to Bandar for lunch and was immediately greeted by Behrooz himself and our server Robert. The interior of the restaurant is exquisitely decorated with dark tiles, modern chandeliers, and swank table settings.
What we enjoyed:
The GQA Team was served a Persian feast that we all tasted “family style.”
- The first course was the Bandar Salad – fresh greens, cucumber and tomatoes, with feta cheese and a lovely olive oil and lemon dressing.
- Next was a group appetizer with 4 dishes:
- 1- eggplant sauce (kashk-o bademjan)
- 2- A shallot, yogurt and dill sauce (must-omosier)
- 3- The classic hummus
- 4- A gorgeous cut of feta cheese sprinkled with Kalamata olives.
- These spreads were all accompanied by a lavash bread to dip into the different sauces.
- Then if that wasn’t enough a rice combo came out with 4 different Basmati Rice dishes on a large platter.
- Adas Polo- A rice with Lentils, Raisins, dates and saffron
- Black Cherry Rice- basmati rice soaked in black cherries, syrup and saffron (our favorite)
- Baghala Polo- rice with lima beans and dill
- Zereshkpolo- rice seasoned with barberries from Iran and saffron
- Immediately the rice plate was followed by a colorful plate of grilled vegetables, lamb shanks, marinated salmon and the most tender chicken we have ever tasted
- We ended the meal with some Persian black tea – we didn’t leave hungry!
- Make sure to go hungry!
- The basmati rice is soaked in water for 24 hours before it is cooked. The soaking makes the rice extremely light and fluffly
- All of the chicken and fish is marinated with a tomato baste, lemon, oils, and saffron for hours before it is grilled, infusing the chicken and fish with an explosion of flavor.
- On the awning of the restaurant it reads, “Best Chicken in the World” and it’s like no other. The Charbroiled boneless chicken tenderloin is marinated then meticulously layered into skewered balls that then are perfectly cooked.
- Private party rooms and event planners are available to host your next event
Bandar is open 7 Days a week for lunch and dinner (Sun-Thurs 11:30am-10:00pm & Fri-Sat 11:30am-11:30pm). Enjoy their Lunch Specials during the week (Mon-Sun 11:30am-3pm) and their happy hour (Mon-Thurs 3pm-5pm) specializing in an array of signature cocktails, martinis, delectable wines, beer and mouthwatering bar appetizers. Make sure to sign up and receive their exclusive emails for birthday specials, complimentary dessert, gift cards and more from your friends at Bandar. Make a reservation today and see for yourself why this San Diego restaurant is listed as one of this beautiful city’s “Top Ten Restaurants!”