[Mountain View] Rose International Market 2.0- kabobs, Persian food and grocery

Rose Market has recently reopened in a new mixed-use development at the corner of Castro and El Camino in Mountain View. And judging from the space and operations, it’s a welcomed upgrade from the old space. Rose Market was popular for its cheap and delicious kabob wraps cooked at the back of the store, and it also served Persian cooked food and offered groceries and halal meat. The new Rose Market also offers the same type of food and it looks like they may even have expanded the cooked food section slightly too.

With the building Rose Market, and Gochi, occupied torn down for redevelopment, Rose secured a subsidized space in the new development from the developers after a community ‘uprising’ at a city hall meeting. Its very positive that when I came mid-afternoon on a Saturday, the market was very crowded, much more so than before. Perhaps its the opening crowd, but this is very welcomed news compared to the other recent news that another community market in Mountain View- Milk Pail- had a 40% drop in business and accepted a buyout from the mighty developers that have been eyeing the space for years.

I haven’t had the grilled and cooked food yet, but will. please report back if you have tried them already.

Grilled food menu:


Cooked food menu and items:







Other food items in the market:




Grilled item pickup window. Order inside. Grab a ticket, pick up here.


Market. Much spiffier than before:




The only one complaint is parking. Used to be surface parking next to the market. Now we’ll have to deal with underground parking with elevator access.


I stopped by for a khoubbideh a couple of weeks ago. Almost up to their old standards, but I couldn’t detect any charcoal flavor, nor could I smell smoke while waiting for my order. I guess they’re grilling over gas now. My takeout order was missing the bag of fresh herbs and onion slices, so make sure you ask for it. They have an expanded menu - I was tempted to order the grilled lamb heart, but I’ll save that for another visit.

I parked on El Camino right in front of the door.

I had to laugh at a recent Yelp review complaining about the anachronistic system of the cashier relaying orders to the kitchen over the PA. To me that’s always been part of their charm, and I’m glad they kept it. And don’t lose that little yellow ticket!

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Oh. I think the charcoal was the reason that sets their kabobs apart. Perhaps they couldn’t get the ok either from the landlord or from the city to continue using charcoal?

They stopped giving out the bag of herbs/ onions by default at the old location a few years back. They will happily provide it if you request, however. My guess is a lot of people don’t really use them so they are trying to cut down on cost.

I can’t really imagine rose market skewers without a bit of char. How did you like the taste?

It’s been so long since I last had one that it’s hard to compare. The taste was good, but I remember it being better.

Palo Alto Weekly ran Elena Kadvany’s review of the new Rose Market last week:


No photos in the online article, but the print version shows kebabs cooking on what is clearly a gas grill. I suppose this unwelcome change was to be expected, either due to building codes or anticipated complaints from their new high-density neighbors.

The review focuses mostly on the precooked dishes, with only a brief mention of the grill items.

Here are the pics:

Too bad its gas grill. I don’t remember if I ever tried their various stews, but i’d like to try it some time, since those aren’t affected by the choice of fuel at the grill.

Question. Has anyone tried the non-grill/ kabob items? I recall in the old market, the cooked food that’s scooped into containers were serviceable but not great. I want to see if I should get those at all. thanks!

Tried it, since it’s gas it has lost that extra amazing taste it used to have… but still worth a stop.

Totally agree: finally got a chance to stop by yesterday with a friend. She was kind of in a hurry so I took the fairly quick way out & got a koubideh kebab in a wrap to go. One really cool thing to me was the order placing/paying process compared to how it was before! Very pleasant young man at the register! Took a quick look at the prepared food area, looked amazing & loved the signage! Ate my kebab wrap at home & while I enjoyed it, surely missed the flavor of the charcoal, plus I didn’t notice the sumac. Next time I will ask for it. Looking forward to going back to sample more…

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Finally tried the new kabobs. Its pretty good. And its pretty cheap. But like everyone commented, its missing that last bit of magic without charcoal. So it tasted, clean.

The fesenjen was on the very sweet side, compared to other fesenjens. So it tasted a bit like a dessert.

Saw this inside the store. Has anyone tried this baklava, imported from Dubai? Looks pretty fancy. But don’t baklava get soggy with the syrup?

I was pretty underwhelmed by the kebabs when I tried them. I did eat at Caspian a couple days before, though…

Rose International Market is fun. I saw fresh grape leaves in the vegetable section a few months ago; was a first for me. Also saw chinese eggplant there. Louisa Shafia’s cookbook The New Persian Kitchen actually specifically calls for japanese eggplants over globes in her khoresh badenjan recipe for its thinner skin and reduced bitterness.

Pretty sure there was a pile of sheep heads in the freezer as well, if anyone’s been looking for some.

They sold bags of dried fenugreek leaves, but they were dubiously brown. Still easier for me to get to than Madras Grocery sans car.

I’m reminded that I bought a couple different varieties of canned fava beans (prepared in a palestinian and egyptian style) and still haven’t tried them yet. I should figure those out :slight_smile: