In our latest Qatar Eating Food Adventure we visited Prince of Persia restaurant to eat and explore Persian cuisine. Located on The Pearl-Qatar it can be considered to be one of the grand dames of the Pearl having opened in 2014, yet many people have not heard about this venue.
Although it is very close to the main roundabout at the entrance of the island, it’s first floor location means that it is often overlooked by diners when searching for great eats in Porto Arabia. Explore Persian cuisine with us as we show you exactly what you have been missing out on!
Prince of Persia
The main dining room has an opulent and decorative interior design, with artefacts and murals representing Persian civilisation. The restaurant has a variety of seating arrangements – booths for privacy, and larger tables for meals with families and friends. The best tables are those that overlook the marina; during the daytime there is lots of light, and you can watch the colourful skies of Doha from this great location.
When we are presented with a welcome bite before we have even ordered in a restaurant then we pay attention. The Prince of Persia impressed with an amuse bouche that perfectly represented its Iranian menu: tart pomegranate seeds, crunchy walnuts with tangy cucumber yoghurt and a final hit of cooling fresh mint.
The rest of the menu represents the best of Iranian cuisine, from tangy salads and fragrant appetisers, to hearty stews and juicy grilled meats. For starters we enjoy the thick and creamy Soup Ash, and the unctuous Zytoon Parvardeh – marinated olives covered in nuts and fresh pomegranate seeds.
We also enjoyed Masto Khiar, a fresh and cooling cucumber yoghurt and the Yasmin Salad with fresh rocket leaves; the peppery taste goes well with the tangy feta, and the sweet mango and strawberries.
The Kashke Bademjan appetiser is not to be missed; made from grilled eggplants and kashk (whey). Grilled eggplants are cooked with onions and garlic, whey is drizzled on top, and it is finished off with fried onions and chopped almonds.
It’s the Iranian equivalent of a dip, but the flavour is so delicious that you can happily enjoy it as a main with bread. Enjoy with the saffron flatbread, which is reminiscent of a deliciously chewy naan – it is one of the best that we have tasted in Qatar!
The hearty Khoresht Bamieh stew features lamb chunks and baby okra, and comes with rice. Prince of Persia restaurant serves three kinds of rice sides: saffron rice; dill herbed rice; and Zareshk Polo that has chopped nuts and barberries. Barberries, also known as Zereshk, are dried berries which have a tangy fruity taste; all Persian households will use the ingredient to amp up the flavour of the rice.
Rice comes with all main courses, as with the Meatballs with Morasa Polo – a Prince of Persia speciality. In this dish cooked meatballs are covered with a yoghurt sauce, and it is served with a jewelled rice cooked with tart red barberries and candied orange peel; simply stunning.
There is an extensive grills menu with lamb, chicken, and seafood dishes. We chose the Prince of Persia Special Mix Grill, which is recommended for 2 people. If you are ordering starters then this platter can definitely be stretched to three or four persons depending on the extent that you are happy to share your grilled proteins.
The platter features barbecued lamp chops (Kabab Barreh), barbecued lamb (Kabab Tikka Masti), barbecued chicken (Joujeh Kabab Masti), Grilled Hammour (Mahi Kabab), minced lamb (Lamb Kabab Koubideh), and barbecued shrimps (Magyu Kabab).
The secret to these grills is in the marination, and the use of Persian spices. The lamb and chicken chunks have been marinated in labneh, which brings a tangy flavour to the skewers. The Lamb chops are juicy and tender, while the shrimps are perfectly barbecued.
All the grilled skewers can be ordered as individual dishes, but the platter represents value, and variety, if you want to try more than two grilled items from the menu.
For beverages there are traditional teas, and homestyle refreshments. The Pomegranate Velvet is a slushy-style drink flavoured with a sharp green chili – and perfect for those who love spice. Traditional Persian desserts include Ferni, Bastani, and a frozen Faloodeh Shirazi; if you like rose-flavoured desserts you will enjoy this Persian sorbet. (It is also available in saffron and strawberry flavours.)
Prices are slightly on the high side, but careful menu choices can still provide a reasonably priced meal, especially if you are sharing with others. The Prince of Persia grills are worth tracking down alone, and don’t get us started about the rice! Its delicious food, excellent service, and Marina views makes it one of the hidden gems of Porto Arabia.
Address: Level 1, 7 La Croisette, Porto Arabia, The Pearl-Qatar, Doha
Opening Times: 12:00pm until 12:00pm
Telephone Number: +974 3339 7039 | +974 4015 0190