Two locations of Persian-Mediterranean restaurant Yalda open next year in Sandy Springs and City of Atlanta.
Yalda opens first at Aria Village off of Abernathy Road in Sandy Springs next spring, followed by the second restaurant in the summer at the Osprey complex on the corner of Howell Mill Road and 10th Street. The Osprey also includes a location of all-day breakfast chain Snooze an A.M. Eatery, which opened on the ground floor of the luxury apartment complex earlier this year.
Named for the Iranian winter solstice festival celebrated on December 21 (the “longest and darkest night of the year,”) expect Persian-style tapas or mezze, alongside a variety of meat and seafood entrees paired with wines and cocktails influenced by Persian flavors and using ingredients and spirits found throughout the Mediterranean.
Chef and co-owner Ashkan Familli, who was born and raised in Iran, calls Yalda a “Persian concept with Mediterranean emphases.” This includes the interior design and all-weather patios for both restaurants, themed after the northern Tehran countryside of Darband, where people living in the city often visit to relax.
“I chose Yalda because of my childhood memories of Yalda nights with my family being together, sharing food, poetry and stories,” Familli tells Eater. “Pomegranate is the symbol of the night and will be utilized both in culinary and mixology aspects. The menu is inspired by ‘meze’ because of sharing small plates on Yalda night.”
Yalda, which also references the birth of the mythological goddess of light Mirtra, is typically a day in which family and friends gather together to eat the last remaining fruits and nuts of summer and read Hafez poetry. Pomegranates and watermelons are particularly significant during the holiday.