Ian Jones, Food and Drink Editor
Ian Jones

The long-awaited revival of Persian restaurant Alborz is the current sizzling-hot topic for Levenshulme’s food-loving locals. It was a popular fixture on Stockport Road for many years, before the pressures of lockdown caused it to close in 2020. But now, like Lazarus or Rick Astley, the restaurant is back and bigger than ever. 

Those years in the wilderness saw the restaurant repurposed into a shisha bar, but now the kitchen has been rebuilt, complete with clay oven, thanks to the hard work of husband and wife team Amir and Nafis, the Iran-born owners. The menu has many classic Middle Eastern dishes, with one or two lesser-spotted options, plus it’s bring your own booze, so nip to a nearby local shop and fill your boots. 

The mezze platter is a great place to start, with four separate light, summery dips and as much freshly baked taftoon bread as you can manage. The garlic and aubergine-based kashk-e-bademjan is highly recommended, but the mirza ghasemi comes out on top – also aubergine-based but this time with vibrant tomato flavours. 

Also in the starters section, you’ll find one notable and rarely-spotted dish: lamb tongue. Yes, two surprisingly huge and meaty tongues, served with a thin lemon-based stock for dipping, and a sprinkling of fresh herbs. It’s not a personal favourite (turns out the texture of tongue is, well, tonguey, who knew?), but my fellow diners loved it – as happy as a springtime lamb (tongue intact) leaping over its sheepy mum, in fact. Nevertheless, to paraphrase Tom Ford, everyone should try it once.

The lamb chops, however, are a smash hit across the board. They’re piping hot from that acclaimed clay oven, packed with Persian spices, soft and tender in the main but crispy and charred where it matters. They come with an obligatory salad and more of that taftoon bread, plus a little sachet of salad cream, bizarre, entirely unnecessary when the meat is as rich and juicy as this.

Finally, the joojeh, Iran’s peerless take on chicken kebab, and it’s a joy. The chicken chunks are a pleasing shade of yellow from the saffron and lemon marinade, and as tender as they could possibly be, paired with a hearty pile of expertly cooked fluffy rice.

The news of Alborz’s return brought an outpouring of happiness from the Levenshulme locals, and it’s clear why. The food is prepared lovingly, no corners cut and the owners aren’t afraid to offer dishes that go beyond the usual high street fare. Welcome back Alborz, you’ve been missed.

820 Stockport Rd, LevenshulmeManchester M19 3AW View map
Telephone: 01615264983 Visit Now

Opening Hours

  • Tuesday12:00pm - 10:00pm
  • Wednesday12:00pm - 10:00pm
  • Thursday12:00pm - 10:00pm
  • Friday12:00pm - 10:30pm
  • Saturday12:00pm - 10:30pm
  • Sunday12:00pm - 9:30pm

Always double check opening hours with the venue before making a special visit.

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