Renowned chefs open a new Iranian restaurant that goes beyond the kebab.
An elevated Persian dining experience, Joon opened this week in Tysons. The concept combines “contemporary Western elements with classic Iranian roots,” according to a press release.
The team, led by chef Najmieh Batmanglij, chef Christopher Morgan, and co-founder Reza Farahani, hopes to put “Iran’s rich culture and cuisine in the spotlight,” according to the press release. Batmanglij has worked for decades adapting Persian dishes to Western techniques and flavors. “Joon,” which means “life” in Persian, is also the name of one of Batmanglij’s numerous cookbooks. Maydān in DC received a Michelin star while Morgan was chef there.
Why choose Northern Virginia for this venture? “Tysons has a large population of Iranians and it has a cosmopolitan population who are open to trying a variety of cuisines,” says Farahani.
Joon goes beyond the familiar kebab (though kebabs are available and even occupy their own section of the menu). Start your meal with the chilled mint and yogurt soup. Or, for something a little heavier, try the Khoresh (Iranian stew) served with crispy rice. Speaking of rice, there’s no shortage of it here; this humble, versatile ingredient is the foundation of several dishes. There is a wide array of small plates for sharing, from lamb and pistachio meatballs to fried sardines. If you’re extra hungry or dining with a larger group, opt for a platter (which serves two to six), such as the duck beryan (whole rotisserie duck) or the whole roasted branzino.
Dishes are served with warm complimentary lavash. And no meal is complete without dessert; Joon offers sweet treats like baklava and sour cherry sorbet. A sizable bar serves hand-crafted cocktails, sodas, beer, and wine.
Joon sources produce locally from Moon Valley Farm in Maryland, and spices are sourced from Heray Spice, a Chicago-based company with a mission to help farmers achieve better wages, while also helping chefs source fresh and high-quality Afghani spices.
In addition to the main dining room, there is a lounge area near the bar. The modern interior is largely covered in chestnut-brown wood, but the space is brightened by chic lighting fixtures and jewel-toned tilework, sofas, and booths.
Joon is open for dinner daily. Complimentary valet service is located at the entrance. 8045 Leesburg Pk., Tysons
Feature image by Rey Lopez
For more stories like this, subscribe to Northern Virginia Magazine’s Food newsletter.