Monday, May 23, 2005

Cheap Eats: Atlas Grocery and Restaurant

This was an accident. We had been painting on Tuesday at the guest house house and didn't feel much like cooking afterwards. So we cleaned up (but I still had mint colored paint in my hair), and drove off in search of something reasonable, filling (we were hungry!), and delicious (isn't that the goal of every meal?).

We thought we might head for Shwarma's but decided on Atlas at the recent recommendation of a couple of friends.

We each had a stew - mine was made with pomegranate and walnuts and shredded beef, and it was sweet tasting. Art had a yellow lentil beef stew served in tomato sauce. The presentation was beautiful and the meals were delicious. The stew itself came in a separate bowl. A beautiful presentation of saffron and plain white rice swirled into a mound and garnished with sumac served on its own plate made it easy for us to share our stews. Art preferred his stew to the sweet one that I had ordered, but I would have trouble deciding which one was my favorite. I do not know the names of either dish, I would need the menu for that, and assistance in pronounciation.

The restaurant is owned by a Iranian woman and her two sons, who were pleasant and friendly which gave the elegant decor homestyle comfort.

Afterwards we wandered through their aisle of samovars, teas, canned goods, packaged candies, bulk beans, nuts and spices. The prices were fantastic, the tarragon and dill were only $2/100g, less than anywhere we had seen it. Art's supply of tarragon was getting low, and it is a necessary ingredient for his chicken and turkey gravies.

Thanks Shannon and Farouk for the recommendation!

We dropped by this weekend so that mom could pick up some herbs (the saffron is a great price as well) and she inhaled deeply when we walked in and noted that we will eat there next time they came to Calgary.

Price: Dinner for two with Persian Tea: $20
Tarragon and Dill to fill our large spice jars: 65 cents.

Atlas Specialty Supermarket and Restaurant: Kosher/Islamic/Halal/Persian, Arabic and more - #100 1000 9th Avenue SW, tel: 230-0990

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