photo credit: Aleksandra Boruch

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New Malden

$$$$Perfect For:Catching Up With MatesHalalWalk-InsLiterally EveryoneDinner with the ParentsCasual Weeknight DinnerVegetariansLunch

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Sofreh might remind you of any recently refurbished restaurant in a nice part of town. It’s got some funky hanging lights, emerald-coloured velvet chairs, and a menu of Persian grilled meats and traditional stews. But Sofreh isn’t any old spot. From the instant-neighbourhood-staple feel to—we’re not overstating this—some of the best grilled jujeh we’ve had in London, it’s somewhere you’ll want to drive an extra 10 minutes to visit. Because even if your local has an identical menu, as may be the case with a lot of Persian spots, you should know that Sofreh is doing everything really, really well.

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You can see every table from most seats in the dining room, which is filled with families, couples, and groups of friends splitting chelo kebab koobideh skewers and passing garlic tanoor bread across the table. While at any other restaurant we’d avoid a seat close to the entrance—for breeze-related reasons—it’s a great place to be seated at Sofreh. It’s right by the clay oven which is prime location for getting the fresh tanoor bread to your table in 30 seconds, plus the pleasant warmth will leave you toasty if someone holds the door open for a second too long. 

The layout of this space, with its group tables and lively atmosphere, make it feel very much like a go-to family restaurant. But the creamy hummus, tender, zesty joojeh, and rich zereshk polo morgh all make it a place that you don’t just want to bring your family to. Because when a restaurant manages to fill a humble chicken skewer with as much flavour as any 16-ingredient dish, you’re going to want to bring everyone you know. 

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The mixed mezze platter comes with five dips of your choice and while all are delicious, make sure you get the smokey aubergine kashk e bademjan and hearty chicken salad olivieh. The portion is huge but paired with the taftoon bread, it’s a combination so good that it’s not the worst thing if you end up 70% full from the starters. The chicken is what you should focus most of your efforts on when it comes to the main courses, whether that’s the citrusy jujeh kabab or the slow-cooked zereshk polo morgh stew. 

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Come here with friends, family, or anyone who has an interest in really good Persian food (a big group will also ease the slightly higher-than-average price of some items). We’re willing to bet a garlic tanoor bread basket that they’ll be back. Because this is a restaurant that you’ll suggest when friends are in the area, one that you’ll immediately think of when you’re passing through New Malden and craving some excellent jujeh, and a spot that instantly earns a space on the list of great Persian restaurants in London. 

Food Rundown

Special Mazeh

Big enough for a big group, this starter comes with five generous portions of your choice of dips. Our move is: salad-e-olivieh, hummus, mast-o-moosir, kashke-bademjan, and mirza-ghassemi. All of which we’d happily eat with a spoon if the next bread basket takes too long to arrive.
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Soup e Joh

Thick with pearl barley and chicken blended to make a smooth, delicious rich bowl of goodness that’ll make you question why you never order soup at restaurants.

Jujeh Kabab Boneless

Just when you think that there’s a ceiling to how good grilled chicken can be, Sofreh’s jujeh enters the scene. Moist and delicious, a single skewer, yellow from the saffron it was marinated in, served alongside a generous pile of rice—with yet more saffron. This is our favourite main here.
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Zereshk Polo Morgh

Described as chicken on the bone, but really it’s so slow-cooked that the meat arrives falling right off. It’s served alongside a rich tomato sauce and Persian rice mixed with barberries, almonds, and pistachios—this is the move if you're looking for something a little more hearty.
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Tanoor Garlic Bread

Freshly baked in the clay oven—and covered in garlic butter. It’s a big fat yes from us.

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