Dinner: Shahishta

17 Dec

Situated in Garhoud, Shahista is perhaps the only Afghani restaurant I’ve seen that aims to serve the upscale crowd with an opulent décor and a pricy menu. Being yet another restaurant Shruti had shot in; it was in our ‘Must try’ list.

We were welcomed by a door man who suspiciously looked like a pathan from Pakistan in an elaborate Afghani Shalwar kameez with a huge Keffiyeh. The interior seemed a little over the top in some sections i.e. trying too hard to look expensive but failing miserably. As usual, the authentic feel is murdered by having waitresses of a different nationality who have no idea about the traditional cuisine nor have the ability to make recommendations. This left us picking main dishes with names we’d never heard of.

To start off, we ordered a Tabbouleh salad with an orange juice for me and steam milk for Shruti. We instead got served a Tandoori Naantopped with sesame seeds and nigella seeds with a yogurt based sauce as a starter followed by our original starter order.

Tandoori Naan


The naan was hot, soft and delicious. It had a slight sweet flavor to it which combined with the sauce tasted divine. The Tabbouleh was disappointing with the lack of that sharp taste to it. The orange juice was perfect while the steam milk was well just hot milk, you can’t go wrong with that.

Orange Juice

Steam Milk

For the main course we ordered the Zarishk Pallaw because the name sounded unusual though later on I found out that it’s an Iranian dish. Anyway it’s a basmati or long grain saffron colored rice mixed with barberriesserved with chicken. The Pallaw with the sweet taste of barberries tasted nice on its own as the chicken was slightly on the dry side.

Zarishk Pallaw

Chicken gravy with Zarishk Pallaw

We also ordered a plate of Loqma Kebab served with French fries for the same reason given above. Loqma or Luqma literally means morsel in Urdu. The chicken was tender and well done though I couldn’t figure out the flavors as such. The taste was nice and Shruti loved it.

Loqma Kebab

For dessert, we ordered ice cream made by the restaurant itself which was nice but a little too sweet for our taste buds.

Fresh hand made ice cream

An average experience with further room for improvement (read: experimenting) that is possibly worth a second visit…


1 Tabbouleh
1 Loqma Kebab
1 Zarishk Pallaw
1 Orange Juice
1 Steam Milk
1 Ice cream scoop

Total AED160 (for two people)


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