Amoo’s House of Kabob (McLean)

Amoo’s House of Kabob @ 6271 Old Dominion Drive in Maclean Virginia, call them @ (703) 448-8500. [DR Link]

Amoo’s House of Kabob embodies the notion of family. For one, it’s a true family-run enterprise with several generations working towards a common goal, driven largely by the sheer will of their brother and son. It is also an incredibly family-friendly restaurant with an approachable staff and setting.

So with only a couple of days in DC, I decided to take my dad here for his 84th birthday. Based on everything I had read, it seemed like exactly the kind of restaurant he would love – honest, but elevated cuisine, and a staff that would go the extra-mile to make him feel like a VIP. I’ve been wrong about 90% of the things I’ve done over the past year, but this wasn’t one of them. Amoo’s was the perfect restaurant this night.

Amoo's Zereshk

It’s not hard to understand why Amoo’s has racked up such impressive scores on the various social dining websites. Throughout the meal, Chef Seb and his staff made us feel completely at home. Of course, in addition to the stellar service, a great deal of thought is put into the menu. I’ve never had Persian cuisine beyond the standard kabobs, but after one meal here I was left wondering what the heck was wrong with me. And I was also wondering why the heck Chef Seb doesn’t write a cookbook because there are not many people out there doing what he is doing, and people should know about it.

Amoo's Stuffed Squash

On this night we had a stuffed acorn squash filled with gheymeh bademjan (beef, yellow split pea and eggplant stew; $18), zereshk polo with lamb ($18), and a lamb chimichurra dish ($30). There were several bright spots and not a dark one. I focused on the zereshk and it was fantastic. The lamb, impossibly tender, was deftly flavored with saffron. And I have never seen such detail paid to rice, which depending on the bite, was light, sweet and sour with just the right amount of oil. The stuffed squash was similarly complex, with the sweetness of the squash playing well the earthy split peas.

I’m greatly looking forward to returning and trying some of the combination platters to see how Amoo’s does the standards.

A lot of nice things have been said about the restaurant, Chef Seb and his staff. I wouldn’t quibble with a single one.


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