Little Italy insert eye-roll clearly indicating a rapturous experience
As she isn't someone who's prone to exaggeration, I made a mental note to make The Pomegranate the destination the next time I got a hankering for Iranian food.
The hubbub of College and Bathurst suddenly seems much further away than the half block of route reversal it really is.
She looks me up and down while she peers at a notepad that I can see has a very short list on it. I ask if the restaurant is fully booked; she looks a bit flustered and says no, then asks "well, what time is it anyway?"
We tell her it's just after 7, and she gestures at an empty table for two (one of several available). "That's booked at 8.30, can you be finished by then?" she asks.
As my companion and I are getting a bit perplexed by being detained for no obvious reason, we agree to be finished within 90 minutes and take the table offered.
It's a bit of an odd start but, thankfully, turns out to be the only blip in the entire experience. We can't help noticing though that when we leave (at 8.40, no-one arrives to claim the table) that apart from one large party, the restaurant is no more full than when we arrived.
The fesenjaan is rich stew made with ground walnuts and pomegranate that comes either vegetarian or with chicken, we opt for the chicken. And it's immediately obvious why it's the most popular dish. The fesenjaan is so deeply flavourful that it alone justifies a trip to Pomegranate. The fruit itself works extremely well in the savoury sauce, adding nuttiness and a little sweetness to the meat.
The food, drinks and restaurant environment were all sublime. The service was quick and we were well advised and attended to throughout the meal.
Photos by Emma McIntyre