Restaurant Review: Afghan Pamir Restaurant

150-152 Thomas Street Dandenong
Ph: 9792 0197
Lunch and Dinner Wednesday – Sunday
www.afghanpamirrestaurant.com.au

After giving a belly dance performance at a local Retirement Village last November, myself and 9 others went to dinner at a restaurant in Dandenong called “Afghan Pamir” where they serve traditional Afghani Cuisine.

We thought in keeping with the day’s events, it would be great to go somewhere Middle Eastern after our concert, and we were certainly not disappointed. Wall hangings, layered carpets and paintings suited our mood and a stage area looked just ripe for entertainment (no we did not get up and dance!) As we were there early in the evening, we did not get to see the stage get used, however this did not detract from the experience. The restaurant is named after Pamir the highest mountain in Afghanistan and a picture of it is on the front of the restaurant. It has been open at least 8 years with one change in location (to almost directly opposite side of the street).

We all chose to take part in Banquet No 2 (as it came with dessert – very important!), although a couple of members of the party were reluctant. This was mainly because they were not big fans of eating lamb. The waiter after hearing this assured them that extra dishes in chicken would be brought out for them. One of the ladies was also trying this type of cuisine for the very first time She hadn’t had any sort of “exotic” cuisine before– she had only gone out to bistro type places so it was quite adventurous of her! She nervously agreed to take part and boy was she glad.

They first brought out some delicious dips with naan bread then followed with several entrees and plates of salad. Then several different dishes for mains with both chicken and lamb including the expected skewered meats, plus shredded kebab lamb with a deliciously flavoured rice. The extra chicken dishes made it a bit more special, one was mild and the other was way too spicy for me to do more than two bites!

When we realised that we still had dessert to come, we all groaned in wondering how we would fit it in. However, as everyone knows, there is always a spare pocket or two to fit in dessert like baklava, sweetened rice balls and green tea.

We were well and truly full at this stage and felt we definitely got value for money (at $35 a head). The staff were very attentive, and understanding (we had a baby in a highchair and a three-year-old with us) so I can say they are family friendly with high chairs, however, a lack of change area for nappies was a slight problem. (To be fair, there might have been one in the ladies’ toilet, but as it was my husband doing the changing this did not help!) I also would have liked to have seen more greens or vegetables with the meal. The salad plates were fine, but extremely basic (plus filled with red onion which I am not fond of), so by the end of the meal I wondered how some could eat this way frequently as I felt up to the gills with meat!

All up we were impressed. They allowed everyone to pay separately, and there was plenty of parking on the street, although this may be harder at different times of the day or week. This area of Dandenong is also undergoing renovation, so there some eye-sores on the street which will look much better when completed. I had also found their website useful when looking for a place to book as they have the menu and prices easily located so could give both this information plus their website to students beforehand.

What did the “adventurous dancer” think? Her words were: “I can’t wait to tell my daughter what I ate tonight – and I liked it!”

Rating: 4 shimmies.

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