Saturday, 25 January 2014

Mowlana, Persian restaurant, Splott - The Cardiff Kebab Quest

January always seems to be the hardest month to cobble together restaurants to review on the blog.

Mrs G is on a diet and so won’t consider eating anything other than rice cakes, salad and 0% fat Greek yoghurt.

Even I’m feeling ashamed of the girth I’ve gained from my winter diet of port and toffifee.

It’s for this reason I found myself eating a solo kebab on the walk home from work on Friday night; it's a hard life.

Mowlana, a Persian restaurant on the awkwardly located Four Elms Road, was the venue of choice.

The kebab – Makhsoos (£12)

Meat – One skewer of unfeasibly tender chicken shish, which had been char-grilled to perfection, and a wafer thin lamb fillet. Whilst the lamb was well flavoured, it had cooked so quickly on the grill that it barely had a chance to gain any smoky goodness. 

Bread – A whopper of a naan (£1) – soft, elastic, crisp and the size of two dinner plates. 

Salad– A fresh selection of tomato, cucumber and lettuce. A wonderfully smoky, char-grilled tomato stole the show.

Sauce – Fiery chilli sauce...

and a soothing, delicate, garlic yoghurt (£2 – but it was kindly provided on the house)

Other stuff – A mountain of buttery rice was so fluffy that ever grain sat separately whilst the sound of a juicer motor reassured me that my fresh OJ was squeeze to order. 

The bill was also accompanied by a piece of chewing gum... I hope they weren't implying something about my breath after I'd consumed a whole bowl of garlic yoghurt. 

The verdict – Mowlana’s chicken shish and their naan bread are pretty much the best I’ve eaten in Cardiff; next time I’ll ditch the lamb fillet and just order a bargainous chicken kebab. The warm service, charming Middle-eastern inspired dining room and counter-laden with Persian pastries are other reasons I'll be sure to return soon.

Update - July 2016

I've now eaten Mowlana's chicken joojeh (£7.50) on a number of occasions and I reckon it's the best Cardiff has to offer. The meat is always just so tender and well seasoned with a good lick of char.

Also, the naan breads (£1) are still the size of a dustbin lid.

The details:

– 2-4 Four Elms Road, Cardiff, South Glamorgan, CF24 1LE
Telephone – 02920 480 100


  1. Seriously overpriced! Try further north, Bradford to be exact.

    1. you pay for quality , i am happy to pay more too. best Persian restaurant i ever been in UK .

  2. I think the cost of getting to Bradford would outweigh any savings and this is NOT an expensive restaurant. Best value and quality meal we've had since moving to Wales