Highly anticipated Persian restaurant Roya will preview dishes as part of an Iranian New Year’s pop-up from co-owners and brothers chef Amir Hajimaleki and Ali Hajimaleki. The Nowruz menu will be found at the North Shoal Creek location of one of their other restaurants, District Kitchen + Bar, on Monday and Tuesday, March 22 and 23, with dine-in meals and family-style takeout.
The takeout dinner will come with larger portions of various dishes, including sabzi polo (Iranian herbed rice), pan-fried red snapper, and a dessert. The meal is $160, with enough to feed four people. Takeout orders are being accepted online by 5 p.m. on Friday, March 19. Pickups take place on those two days from 5 to 6 p.m.
Roya’s on-site dinners will consist of five-course meals featuring dishes such as ash reshteh (a Persian noodle soup) made with braised lamb and fermented yogurt, and a dessert of cardamom and bitter orange panna cotta with a pomegranate liquid gel and pistachios, concocted by pastry chef Dennis Van. The 7 p.m. seated reservations are $90 per person, with indoor and outdoor dining options. Wine and cocktails will be available for on-site purchasing as well.
The Hajimalekis, who are Iranian themselves, announced their plans for Roya in 2018. While there is no set address for the restaurant, it is expected to open in 2022.
Also for Nowruz, the Hajimalekis will serve up Persian pies at one of their other restaurants, the North Shoal Creek pizzeria Shortie’s, every weekend in March. The first two weekends will feature a pie topped with ghormeh sabzi (an Iranian herb stew); the final weekend spotlights a koobideh pie (ground meat kebabs). The pizza will be available for takeout and dine-in service from Fridays to Sundays.
The brothers are also co-owners of New American restaurants District Kitchen + Cocktails (with two locations), and Oasthouse Kitchen + Bar (with one existing location and another to come). Staying very busy, they’re also opening a seafood restaurant, Keepers, in South Austin on West Slaughter Lane sometime this year.