Sunday, 11 October 2009


After trying to eat at Zafron one night only to find the place full, I learnt my lesson and booked ahead to make sure it didn't happen again. Zafron is on Brunswick Street at New Farm, basically across the road from the old Village Twin cinema. Zafron is a Persian/Mediterranean restaurant, which means there is a wide selection of food on the menu.

As you walk in there are tables on the deck at the front, but the tables inside have a bit more atmosphere, especially because you can look at the enormous grill at the back of the room. I wouldn't want to be sitting at the table next to it, but it does look impressive. We sat in a booth type table on one side of the room. Although we'd booked for 4 people, it was a real squeeze fitting all our food on the table during the night.

There are some terrific starters at Zafron. We ordered one of the tapas shared plates for $25. The tapas plate had dolme (vine leaves stuffed with lamb & beef mince, split peas, rice, walnuts, blackcurrants and herbs), eggplant rolls (charred eggplant slices rolled with semi dried tomatoes, herbs & feta), kashki-badem-joon (lamb & eggplant slow cooked with goat's yoghurt & mint) and triangles of filo pastry stuffed with spinach, feta and pine nuts. The platter was delicious (the eggplant rolls and kashki-badem-joon were the winners), and a perfect way to start the night - I love having lots of little tasting dishes as an entree.

If you'd rather start the night off with dips, try the Mediterranean dip platter ($15) or the Persian dip platter ($15), each of which is served with three different dips, Turkish bread and fried lavash crisps.

Although it took me a while to pick a main course (there were a few that stood out), I eventually settled on their house specialty, the chello kebab ($28). These were chicken & lamb kebabs marinated with saffron, yoghurt & herbs and then char grilled on the Turkish barbeque. The kebabs were served with saffron rice, Persian yoghurt and a little salad. The kebabs were delicious, and the Persian yoghurt was a great accompaniment to both the lamb and chicken.

I also tried the Caspian chicken ($26), described on the menu as the chef's Persian nouveau signature dish. The Caspian chicken was a chicken fillet coated in pomegranate nectar and crushed roasted pinenuts which had been pan fried, then baked. It was served with a creamy saffron sauce, caramelised carrots and baby spinach. The Caspian chicken looked great, but I found it very rich - I wasn't convinced that the tangy pomegranate flavour gelled with the creamy saffron sauce.

Service during the night was friendly and generally attentive. At one stage our tiny table had so much food on it that the waitress ended up putting a bottle of water on the floor next to the table, because there was no room left. You can BYO wine, and corkage is $6 per bottle.

There is a good selection of meals for vegetarians, and gluten free meals are clearly marked on the menu (which was great for me).

Overall, Zafron is a great place to visit with a few friends, to try food that you don't come across in Brisbane very often. The entrees are particularly good - I'd be more than happy just to spend the night grazing on loads of the shared platters.

What does all this mean? A great range of tasty Persian & Mediterranean food, with excellent entrees to share around the table.

food bling ratings
Food - Good
Service - Good
Ambience - Persian decorations inside, with a giant Turkish BBQ
Value for Money - Good
Wine - BYO
Vegetarian - Great
Gluten Free - Good selection

7/726 Brunswick Street
New Farm 4005
P - 07 3358 2655
W -

Zafron on Brunswick on Urbanspoon


Gastronomy Gal said...

I had the caspian chicken and i concur that it was very rich. However, a cream lover that was dining with me notes the chicken as one of her favourite dishes of all time!!

food bling, Brisbane said...

Yep my friend that ordered the Caspian Chicken really enjoyed it as well. I'll have to go back soon for more of their addictive entrees.

S said...

I recommend trying The Persian Restaurant at Coorparoo - they do excellent Gluten Free Food and the service there is wonderful. And they even have bellydancing every so often which is also superb.

Anonymous said...

I am Persian and I find Zaffron to be the best persian restaurant I have been to outside of Iran! Zaffron is far better than "The Persian Restaurant" in Coorparoo as I find it to be more genuine, authentic and consistent. The Chef there is very talented and it is often hard to tell whether you are eating at a restaurant and at home with Mum's cooking... I highly recommend their Fesenjan.