When you travel, some of the most memorable moments are the unplanned ones, and this is precisely what happened when I was in Isfahan last May.
After visiting the beautiful Armenian Valk cathedral (to which I’ll be devoting a whole post), on our way back to the more central Imam Square, my friend and I couldn’t help being attracted by the quaint entrance of a small cafeteria, Firouz Sherbat cafe, cozy, old-fashioned and carefully decorated in the smallest detail.
Since it’s an Armenian district, and clearly that was an Armenian cafe, the only shops allowed to sell alcohol in Iran, and since my friend Madi was convinced that Sharbat was an alcoholic drink, she started meticulously warning me about the debauched afternoon we were about to have. Nevertheless, we didn’t resist, the facade was pretty and the door, shrewdly left ajar, quickly lured us in.
And so we stepped over the threshold to find ourselves suddenly thrown back in time in this small cafe, decorated in an exquisite vintage style and, according to the young owner, where the aim is to keep a very traditional Iranian profile, starting from the menu, strictly Farsi-only, listing delicacies properly made the most traditional way.
My Iranian friend promptly translated the menu for me, but if you are not so well equipped, I wouldn’t worry, just point your finger somewhere in the list and rest assure that you are bound to order something delicious. Even after the translation I had a hard time picking only one thing. In fact, so much we liked our saffron-honey ice cream, that afterwards we didn’t find the nerve to leave and ordered a nice tea instead, one cinnamon and one orange blossom flavored.
A big chunk of our afternoon was spent there, eating, sipping, gossiping and take a million of pictures. Yes, because the place was not pleasant only for what they served, but also for being a true photographer’s paradise.
Among the ice cream flavors your mind will get lost in are saffron and honey (the one I took), cardamom, rose water and different types of nuts.
This lovely place is located in charming Kelisa Street, Jolfa, Hakim Nezami St. in Isfahan, and just to tease you a little bit more, below are some more shots I took there, in the wait for my next visit.