Kite Runner Cafe to Bring Afghan, Indian, Lebanese Fusion to Lee Highway

Owners plan to open the restaurant in April.

A new restaurant opening in Arlington will bring Afghan, Indian and Lebanese food all to one place. 

“It’s fusion with a twist,” said co-owner and chef Homayon Karimy.

The Kite Runner Café at 3800 Lee Highway will open in the beginning of April. The owners received their building permits from Arlington County last week and hope to start construction soon.           

Karimy, who worked his way up at the Lebanese Taverna as a chef for several years, has dreamed of owning a restaurant since working at his parent’s bakery in Pakistan when he was a boy. He was born in Afghanistan but grew up in Pakistan before moving to the United States in 1998.

“My mom is a great Afghan cook, so she will be doing a lot of the tasting,” Karimy said.

Karimy said his parents are proud that he will follow in the family restaurant business. Karimy is opening the restaurant in partnership with his brother, Timor Karimy, and his wife, Marzia Spanta.

They first decided to take on the venture in 2007 and have been working toward it since then.

 “There was a lot of work that went into it,” Spanta said. “From picking the perfect location, to the business and administrative side of it. I wasn’t aware of the intricacies of starting a business.”

The restaurant’s name is meant to evoke scenes of Afghanistan, where kite running is a popular pastime for Afghan boys.

“We know there are a lot of Afghan restaurants in the area, and we wanted to stand out,” Spanta said, adding that many such restaurants have the name “kabob” or “Afghan” in their name.

“We are hoping that the décor will be more contemporary,” Spanta said.

The food will range from kebabs to Lebanese style mezze specialties. Food will be along the lines of a casual dining restaurant without waiting service.

“We have a small operation so we will be creative with our menu,” Karimy said.

Know of a business opening in Arlington County soon? Email Clarendon Patch editor Rachel Hatzipanagos at rachelh@patch.com.


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