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Soltan Banoo offers vegetarians and vegans in San Diego a taste of Iran

Soltan Banoo's Veggie Kabob with Loubiah Polo rice
Soltan Banoo's Veggie Kabob with Loubiah Polo rice
Photo by Terence Jacinto

Restaurant Review

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Great tasting food has the power to transcend borders and the political divisions that exist between nations. An interesting phenomenon that occurs when tensions arise between two countries is the increased curiosity between its people, especially when it comes to the cultural aspects of the other. Recent tensions between the United States and Iran has helped peaked the interest of Iranian culture here in the U.S, and restaurants that serve Iranian food (also known as Persian food) are the benefactors of this phenomenon in consumer behavior caused by geo-political tensions.

One restaurant that’s benefiting from the current geo-political landscape between the United States and Iran is a cozy place in San Diego called Soltan Banoo. The owners of Soltan Banoo take pride in serving what they call ‘eclectic Persian cuisine’. Soltan Banoo offers a wide array of vegetarian/vegan offerings, all of which have a ‘home-cooked’ flavor and aroma. The vegetarian/vegan entrees include items such as veggie kabobs, curries, specialty rice dishes, soups, salads, and wraps. Appetizers include some items that one would expect to find in restaurants with Middle Eastern themes such as hummus, baba ghanoush, and sambosas.

Pictured in this article is Soltan Banoo’s Veggie Kabob. This particular entree comes with skewers of grilled corn on the cob, tomatoes, onions, green peppers, portabella mushrooms, and zucchini. However, the real treat of the veggie kabob entrée are the large cubes of grilled tofu, which are lightly marinated in teriyaki sauce and flavored with Persian spices combining to create a surprisingly unique and exotic flavor. Normally, the veggie kabob entree comes with the option of white or brown rice, however for a couple of extra dollars you can upgrade to one of Soltan Banoo’s specialty rice dishes. The specialty rice pictured is called the Loubiah Polo. The Loubiah Polo consists of basmati rice, which is cooked in Persian spices and a tasty Persian curry, along with chopped green beans and tomatoes. The entrees are accompanied by a small Shirazi salad made of chopped cucumbers, tomatoes, onions, and cilantro soaked in fresh lemon juice and olive oil.

The owners of Soltan Banoo make the effort to use organic vegetables in their dishes, and all of their traditional entrees that contain meat can be made with tofu to accommodate guests who want to eat a plant-based meal. This aspect alone makes Soltan Banoo the ‘go-to’ place in San Diego for vegetarians and vegans who are craving to take their palates to explore the alluring tastes of Persian cuisine.

Soltan Banoo provides a warm and welcoming dining atmosphere, and their patio seating option makes the dining experience that much more memorable. Soltan Banoo is situated in the inviting University Heights neighborhood just a few miles East of downtown San Diego.

To view more details about Soltan Banoo’s menu, visit their website at http://www.soltanbanoo.com/index.html