With one of the longest menus I've ever seen, Reza's dishes out a delicious array of Persian favorites: Seafood, beef, lamb, poultry and plenty of vegetarian-friendly fare all served in a spacious dining room that's unexpectedly rich and stately. Pre-Reza's, the space was home to a warehouse-size brewery whose beer kettles, although no longer in use, remain a focal point...and the perfect accompaniment to an extremely elegant bar.
You can't go wrong with any of the appetizers, and since they're so reasonably priced, you need not feel bad about ordering a few. Take the heart-healthy route with middle-eastern traditions like hummus, tabbouli or dolmeh (grape leaves stuffed with lentils and yellow split peas in a light tomato sauce). Kabobs are a popular order, and come skewered with filet mignon, chicken, Chilean sea bass or scallops (and oh so many more choices).
Fessenjan, a whole chicken breast simmered in a pomegranate-walnut sauce, is a house specialty. The four vegetarian samplers are popular, especially among eaters who want to try a little of everything. Be prepared to ask for a doggy bag; not only are the portions as big as Reza's dining room, but they also come with pita bread, feta cheese and rice, couscous, potatoes or a Persian salad.
The lunch buffet is available from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. daily and, at $9.95 Monday through Friday, will give you unbeatable bang for your buck. On Saturday and Sunday, it'll cost you $14.95 and $19.95, respectively, but in all fairness, there are even more buffet items to savor on the weekend. There's also a location in Andersonville.
Average cost: $21-$30
Centerstage Reviewer: Natalie Goldstein