Address: 43 Bolton Street, Newcastle NSW 2300
I miss the golden age of Newcastle’s CBD. No, I’m not talking about the 50’s when David Jones was but one of many thriving department stores along Hunter Street and The Store wasn’t a place to go for weird seafood/leather goods. I’m talking about the 90’s; a time when you had to decide between Big Al’s (an Al Capone themed diner) or all you can eat Pizza Hut, going to see the latest Power Rangers movie at the Showcase cinema and patting Camilla the dog before taking your seat.
“Town” has had a bit of a rough trot over the years but she’s comin’ back! Some nice little retail stores, cool bars and a bunch of eateries are helping bring Newcastle’s CBD back to life and one of those eateries is The Persian Place on Bolton Street.
TBH I don’t know if I had ever tried Persian food until I decided to stop by for lunch just before Christmas. The space is chill AF; floors covered with rugs and tables covered with beautiful fabrics, a great space for an intimate dinner or large gathering (there’s a whole room out the back that would be perfect for that).
The menu specifies which items can be made vegan, which is a bloody godsend and unfortunately a rarity at Newcastle restaurants (seriously, is it THAT hard?) A total of six dishes altogether which when ordered together would make a bitchin’ feast!
The Felafel are sensational and served with pickled red cabbage and smoky sauce. The Nan Panner is an awesome fresh accompaniment full of fresh tomato, cucumber and herbs plus it’s served with the most amazing flat bread. The Mirza (smoked tomato and eggplant) is sensationally smoky and flavoursome, while the Qeymeh (roasted zucchini) can stand alone as its own dish. The menu highlight for me is the Seeb Zamini; triple cooked potatoes with mint salt (!!!) and when made vegan, served with some of the best hummus I’ve ever tried.
The staff are lovely and accomodating, the service is speedy and the atmosphere perfect for sharing a meal with some of your favourite peeps. You could leave feeling completely satisfied for between $20-$30 per person which in this day and age, is pretty bloody impressive. Also I think it’s worth noting that I ate here four times in the space of a fortnight so you know it’s dope.
I’ll still cling onto the hope that one day Big Al’s will return to Newcastle with a vegan vengeance but until then, The Persian Place remains my new pick for dining in Newy’s CBD!