Moby Dick House of Kabob Grieves the Loss of Its Founder and President, Mike Daryoush
Mike Daryoush, Founder and President of one of Washington D.C.’s most beloved restaurants, Moby Dick House of Kabob, has died. He was 66. “With a heavy heart and great sadness, we regretfully announce the passing of the Founder and President of Moby Dick House of Kabob, Mike Daryoush, late on Thursday, May 9, 2019,” said Ned Daryoush, Vice President and Alex Momeni, Director & Chief Development Office for Moby Dick House of Kabob. Mr. Momeni added, “he left a big void not only with his family and friends, but also in our community. Our thoughts and prayers are with Mr. Daryoush’s family during this difficult time.”
For more than three decades, Mike Daryoush ran his chain of restaurants, always adhering to his core beliefs: take pride in your work and never cut corners. It is that same dedication and commitment that Mr. Daryoush applied to all facets of his business, fiercely dedicated to both his employees and his customers. His kind heart and unparalleled work ethic inspired the loyalty of his employees. The very first person Mike hired still works in his restaurant nearly 30 years later, witnessing the inspiring growth of the restaurant every day.
At first, the luncheonette featured traditional American cuisine, but it wasn’t until Mr. Daryoush built a traditional clay oven in the restaurant that he was able to garner huge success. From there, baked pita was added to the menu, starting Mr.Daryoush on the road to success.
When he realized that he could offer an authentic take on the traditional Persian food he loved so much, he reopened the luncheonette as Moby Dick House of Kabob. Customers everywhere were satisfied, and Mr. Daryoush never looked back. That first restaurant in Bethesda remains there to this very day and since then, Moby Dick has branched out into 23 locations across the Maryland, DC and Virginia areas.
For Mike, family was the most important precious thing in life. He is survived by his wife, Susan and four sons, Ned, Josh, Aarod, and Aaram. Mr. Daryoush leaves a great void behind him, not only with his family, but with the entire community.
Below, you can leave your signature and thoughts about Mr. Daryoush, the man who made the dream of Moby Dick House of Kabob a reality.
Sincere condolences to the Daryoush family and friends of Mike. I’m merely a long-time customer of the Bethesda store, but it was moving to read about details of Mike Daryoush’s life in your tribute, as well as in Tim Carman’s appreciation in The Washington Post today.
I met Mike when he first opened Bethesda, and found him to be a delightful person. So sorry he is gone so soon, my condolences to all of his family. What a great legacy he has left you.
Sending heartfelt condolences to the entire family.
My sincerest condolences to the Daryoush family, friends and community. I am a long time customer of the Dupont Circle location with a great love of Persian food. Khoda Hafez Mike and may Allah bless your family and friends during this difficult time.
My sincere condolences and sorrow for the loss of one of the best restaurant owners in the tri state area. My mom and I have been coming to the one in Olney for years and my wife have been going to the one in silver spring MD for anymore of years. Great food. He will be missed.
Very sad news – my condolences to the family. Anyone who knows me, knows Moby Dick is my favorite all-time restaurant. I’ve been a loyal customer since I was in college back in 1993. Not only do I love the food, but as a small-business owner myself, I’ve always admired the professionalism and processes of his business operation. Although I’ve never met him, he will be missed.
Sincere condolences to the entire family. There is a Moby Dick Kabob near our office and we really enjoy the days we have Moby Dick cater lunch for us! I hope his family has lots of happy memories to help sustain them.
Deepest condolences from my family to yours. We are long time customers of Moby Dick in the Olney area. Thank you for bringing wonderful Persian cuisine and joy to the DC area.
Dear Daryoush family, I just read the article on the WAMU website about the passing of your father, and was very moved. When we moved to Vienna VA in 1996, we found your restaurant by the Fair Oaks shopping center movie theater. Sometimes the movies weren’t so great, but the food at Moby Dick’s was always delicious, and the people that worked there always friendly. We have since moved away, but I remembered instantly the name Moby Dick.
Very, very sad to hear that your father and husband passed away at what is these days a relatively young age. Some people, you wish they could live forever, and your father was one of them.
I’m deeply sorry to hear about this loss and my thoughts are with his friends and family. Very grateful to have this chain in the DC area and the ability to get Persian food when I am far away from home. Means a lot.
My deepest condolences to family and friends.
My family’s sincerest condolences on the passing of Mr. Daryoush. Moby Dick has been our family’s go-to place for a decade and a half. My wife Christy and our young sons have much joy when we head to Moby Dick and are never disappointed. We wish the Daryoush family comfort in this time of loss.
Deepest condolences to the Moby Dick family. What an inspiring life story. Our children have been brought up on a diet of Moby Dick kebabs – and for that, they will eternally be grateful to Mike.
He set a higher standard for Persian food and kept its quality high.
I hope who ever continue the business keep even the quality higher!
I wish I’d known this wonderful man. Such an interesting story, and a beautiful legacy. Thinking of his loved ones and wishing peace to all.
As a family that has enjoyed the delicious benefits of Mike Daryoush’s inspiration and enterprise, we join the whole Moby Dick family in celebrating his life and grieving his passing. God bless Mike and all his clan.
Condolences to the Daryoush family and friends. What a positive impact Mr. Daryoush had in my life, and my children’s lives, with his passion to bring good food to the DC area. I have been ordering/ eating food at the McLean, VA and Falls Church, VA locations for as long as I can remember. I hope that Mr. Daryoush’s passion and commitment continues through the company.
I’m very sorry to hear of your loss. My kids have affectionately called your restaurant “Whale Tail” since they were toddlers. We order every week and you’ve provided nutritious meals for our family for years. Thank you for your vision and high quality ingredients. You’ve built something wonderful!
Sometimes, the best bond building between cultures takes place at a meal. I never met you Mike, but thanks for building a bridge for different people to walk across and meet the “other side”. While your loved ones will miss you, those of us who never met you have benefitted by your life you built here. We are all immigrants.
My deepest condolences
So sorry for the loss. Condolences to the family and friends.
My family has always appreciated the Moby Dick commitment to quality and flavor, thanks to the leadership of Mr. Daryoush. The Ashburn location has long been a generous part of the community. We extend our condolences to Mr. Daryoush’s family and friends.
Continue the food Mr Daryoush brought to our area and saddened with the news of his passing. May he Rest In Peace.
Our sincere condolences! We love Moby Dick. Frequent customers in Olney and Sterling.
May he rest in peace
My condolences to the family. I am a frequent customer in Germantown and Bethesda. You have left a true legacy of healthy fish options. You will surely be missed. From Rose
My condolences to the family and friends of Mike Daryoush. While we never have met Mike, we have been regular diners at the Arlington Moby Dicks for over 16 years. My son is a picky eater, and Moby Dicks is his favorite bar none. We are so grateful that he has shared his wonderful Iranian food in our community.
Thank you for sharing this information. My family have been long time customer’s and we love Moby Dick. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Daryoush family and their work family(s) as well. RIP
Didn’t know Mr. Daryoush personally. But, I am a long time regular at the Ashburn stores. Best wishes to all the Daryoush family as well as the Moby Dick employees.
Our condolences to Daryoush family at this sad time. He made a lot of impact for many people. I’m one of the regular at Sterling and Ashburn location. My family enjoyed the restaurant. Please know that you are in my thoughts and prayers.
We are so sorry for the loss of Mike Daryoush. He will be greatly missed by all those who knew him and all his customers who appreciated all his efforts. My sincere condolences to his family and friends.
Our deepest condolences for your lost. I am a longtime customer at the original DC store since early 90s and recently at Falls church, VA
The best tribute is to continue serving wonderful food to the community.
My condolences to the Daryoush family. Always get the best kabobs from your Kingstowne location.
So sorry for the loss of this wonderful man. May his memory be a blessing for all. We have been Bethesda store supporters for years!!!!!
You’ve given the DC area one of the best middle eastern taste Mike. Rest In Peace buddy. My sincere condolences to family and friends. Your legacy will always be remembered. Prayers. Lots of prayers.
At the time I was missing the Persian food I had access to in London. Moby Dick was the one place I would travel way out of my way to get some. It was even better when a Silver Spring branch opened up (it’s a shame it didn’t work out). Thank you for the memories and thank you for the food. You have created a strong legacy in the DC area.
Thank you for over two decades of delicious food. Moby Dick’s meals have been a part of our family and we all send his family our condolences. Rest In Peace.
My condolences on the loss of this great man. When i worked downtown the only place i would go out to eat was the Moby Dicks near Dupont Circle. Where i work now has no Moby. Where i live has no Moby. I always get excited when a trip takes me near a place where i can hrab the best kabobs in DC.
May memories of Mike Daryoush always bring a smile to your heart.
I am grateful to him for bringing Persian food to life for me and making the best Ghormeh Sabzi I’ve ever tasted.
I knew him for almost 40 years, since attending school at GW. I have great memories with Mike. He will truly be missed.
Very saddened by the passing of Mr. Daryoush. This was a sad day not just for the Persian-American community, but for everybody that was touched by the vision and efforts of this extraordinary entrepreneur. We wish his family strength during this very difficult time.
Please accept our deepest sympathy. My family has enjoyed the delicious food at Moby Dick in Bethesda since 1990. We have always felt that the food at Moby Dick is a gift of love. After reading your tribute and Tim Carman’s, it’s clear that really is the case and that Mr. Daryoush was the reason why.
I am sad to hear of the passing of Mike Daryoush at such a young age. The first Moby Dick I visited was within walking distance from my house in Fairfax. While I now live in North Carolina, I am in Northern Virginia every month, and continue to visit Moby Dick. I tell friends in VA and NC that Moby Dick has the best kebabs I’ve ever had, and encourage them to visit. I introduced my teenaged daughter to Moby Dick and she loves it too. I did not know Mike, but was very happy for his success as a local businessman. From the article about him, I can see that his success was not only in business, but also a good person. My sincere condolences to his family and friends.
My family has been catering parties and dining in at the Georgetown and McLean locations since I was a little boy. This was the original House of Kabob and the standard is still the same at all the locations with all the success and growth that this wonderful man has been able to achieve over the years.
I’m now married and dine at the DuPont location with my wife at least once a week. We really look forward to the amazing food and the dining experience. Rest in peace Mr. Daryoush 🙁 I’m looking forward to the day that I can bring my children to eat at Moby Dick House of Kabob and pray that you go straight to heaven and that your family celebrates your life more than they morn your passing. Your memory will live forever 🙂 The Power of Kobideh
My condolences to Mike Daryoush’s family, friends, and loyal employees. I just love Persian cookery and it was great that he opened his first eatery here in Bethesda where I live.
Our joy came many years ago at the first Moby Dick Kabob store – authentic Persian cuisine in an unassuming way. While we are based in NJ – we often ask to move your stores to the NJ Princeton Area. For many many years each summer we would pass through the Washington DC/VA area. Our trips always included a stop at one of the Moby Dick locations. This year one of our children is attending college in Baltimore; she has the local Moby Dick restaurant on speed dial for Ghorem Sabzi Fridays! She’s turned her dorm on to delicious Persian food. When we drop her off I’m sure to get a family size take out to bring back home. Our thoughts and prayers are with your family. May Mike always know what a gift he has provided to our family for many many years in cherishing our beloved Persian cuisine during our travels.
My sincere condolences to the family.
I send my family’s condolences to Mike Daryoush’s family and friends. Moby Dick ‘s Bethesda location has long been a favorite of generations of my family — my husband and kids, my Mom and inlaws, and even my late grandmother were all happy when we chose to bring take out from Moby Dick. I was so moved to read about Mike Daryoush’s life, and his restaurants have truly reached across backgrounds and ethnicities. The food has certainly brought my Jewish American family together around the table — at least when we weren’t squabbling about who gets what leftovers! In the words of our Jewish tradition, may his memory be a blessing.
So sorry for your loss, and my thoughts are with your family during this time. Mike’s contributions to the DC metro area in the form of Moby Dick are a lasting testament to the man that he was.
A young immigrant with an entrepreneurship mind coming to US at early 20s with not much money in his pocket. He earned an engineering degree from GWU and washed the dishes and became a waiter to support his life. Then he entered the restaurant business with an innovative mind starting with a small sandwich shop turning it into a fantastic and successful 24-store franchise. Admiration for him, he worked so hard in his life and succeeded but regrettably did not live longer to enjoy it even more. He always will be remembered.
Mike’s life story is the story of our country that how we, a British Colony, became the United States of America.
To God we belong and to him we return. My condolences to Mike Faryoush’s family and friends. I never met him, but I am one of the many who benefited from his entrepreneurship that provided such excellent food and a nice informal place to dine with my friends and family. May Go forgive him and grant him paradise.
His work ethic is an inspiration. May he be enveloped in joy and light in the next realm.
Great Middle Eastern Food that I have been eating at your restaurants since the early 2000’s! My family and I are Lebanese and love the tasty food at Moby’s! May Mike’s spirit live on in Moby’s…
I’ve been going to Moby’s since it first opened in McLean and it’s been my go to spot every since. This loss is truly sad, but glad to know Mike has left a lasting legacy in the DMV area. Rest In Peace
All our family loves Moby Dick. The food has never been less than excellent and the staff friendly and efficient, regardless of which location we went to; this is a strong testament to the work ethic and belief system Mike adhered to. RIP
RIP Mike. My future-wife and I used to visit the Bethesda location about 25 years ago and fell in love with the taste of the chicken, the hummus, and the fresh bread. Through dates, dinners, and now, with our daughter, family meals, Moby Dick has not only been a relied upon good-eat, but something that has brought us joy and happiness. We always enjoy going to a new Moby Dick and rating the hummus compared to the other locations (they are all subtly different). Thank you so much for creating Moby Dick and being part of our lives. Rest easy in knowing what a positive impact you have made on the lives of so many people. Thanks.
Please accept my sympathy on the loss of this great person. A great legacy remains, thanks to Mr. Daryoush’s vision and ethics. And his family and friends, and customers, will keep his memory alive for generations to come.
My condolences to your family on your loss. I am a big fan of the restaurant. Mike built up a delicious and healthy restaurant and I am grateful he went with his passion and became a restauranteur.
Thank you for bringing your love of Persian food to us. We are forever grateful. Rest peacefully. Khodahafez, Mike-Joon.
We love the food you created for us. Providing a product loved by so many is a service to humanity. Thank you. To those who loved you, we are thinking of you and so sorry for your loss. Age 66 is much too young. Very tragic.
I wish I knew about Moby before I was introduced to this establishment. The wonderful meals I would have had. Mike Daryoush created a heavenly delicious offering. I will miss his talent.
My wife and I have been loyal patrons of the Moby Dick restaurant for year. Moving over the years between Maryland, DC and Virginia it has always been our number one choice of places to eat our due to the consistency, quality and great flavors we count on time and time again. We tried other Iranian and Persian restaurant throughout the area and have always come back to our favorite Moby Dick. That you Mr. Daryoush for what you have created in our community over some many years. We will continue to be patrons for many years to come.
My sincere condolences to the entire Daryoush family. May he rest in peace. I was introduced to Persian food at the Bethesda location about 30 years ago and was instantly addicted. A Persian friend and coworker introduced me, and i am forever grateful to her and Mr. Daryoush for everything. Prayers
Thank you Mr. Daryoush for creating such an amazing restaurant. Growing up I was a very picky eater and would have Moby Dick around 3 times a week. I am now 6’5, but one of my earliest memories was getting on my top toes to try and look over the counter of the Bethesda location. I got to know the amazing employees of Moby Dick so well that we still have personal conversations everytime I see them even though I now live outside DC. Although I did not know Mr. Daryoush personally, I am so thankful for his creation and know his legacy will continue as long as his lovely food continues to feed hungry people.
Deeply sorry for his loss, his place is empty in all Mobydicks, but i am sure his personals especially Mr. Meisam in Washington DC areal would serve as a devoted manager in mobydick.
We have been a regular customer of Moby Dick and enjoy the food Mr. Daryoush created. Sorry to hear that Mr. Daryoush is no more. My sincere condolences to the Daryoush family. May his soul rest in peace.
My condolences to the Daryoush family, and my gratitude to Mr. Daryoush for providing me and my family with delicious food for all these years. RIP.
I’m saddened by the news of his passing and offer my prayers to his family and friends. I still remember his kindness when I was a kid and came in with my mom. He’s always been a great person and I enjoyed not just the food, but also his success with expanding Moby’s from one location to what it is today. He will be missed.
As a customer for more than 25 years, Mr. Daryoush’s high values showed through in his product and business My sincerest condolences to his family and friends. May his family and employees carry forward these high ideals.
Condolence to Mr. Daryoush family, friends and all the staff at Moby Dick. We love the food since my husband discovered it thru his former colleague many years ago. It’s been our family’s take out comfort food.
I am so sorry for your loss. My family and I are faithful customers of the McLean restaurant, and while we didn’t know Mike Daryoush personally, he has brought fun times and good food into our lives for uears.
I am so sorry to hear of his passing. My condolences to his family during this time, and blessings of thanks for the work he has done. His restaurants have brought much happiness to our family, and our thanks go out to him.
My condolences and best wishes go out to the family of Mike Daryoush and to the Moby Dick family of owners and employees, many of whom I have gotten to know
over the years. Mr. Mike has left us too early, but his legacy will live on.
I started going to Moby’s since it first opened in McLean. I am in the commercial real estate field. One day I spoke with Mike and showed him a building that I owned at 1300 Connecticut Ave., and I was able to get him to take over a failed restaurant, he was one of if not the finest and most honest person I have ever dealt with. RIP my friend and keep smiling down on us.
My condolences to Daryoush’s family and friends. My family and I have been regular customers at Kentlands location since it opened. Although, I have never met Mr. Daryoush, I feel like I have lost a member of my family. May God bless his heart.
Condolences to the family and friends. Wishing all his family the patient and May God bless him. He left a very good legacy.
So sorry to hear of his passing. My wife and I have always said that Mobys has been our favorite restaurant. We went to Mobys twice a week when we lived in Northern Virginia. We now live in Mineral Va an I travel up to Northern Va 1-3 times a week. At least 2 times a month, I stop by Mobys on the way home so we can continue to enjoy your great restaurant. Once again, we are so sorry for your loss.
Regrettably I never met Mike. You can tell from the many thoughts and memories shared that he touched many lives. Very inspirational. Merci!!!!
To the Daryoush family and friends, please know that our thoughts and prayers are with you. May he Rest In Peace.
A house so big that everyone sat at his table. Thank you for bringing us into your home.
Sincere condolences to his loved ones. He sounds like he was a wonderful man. I am a long time patron of his restaurant and appreciate his braveness in introducing Persian cuisine to the area when it was not yet popular in the mainstream at that time. The food served at his restaurants is fantastic. He was a pioneer.
My sincere condolences to family and friends of Mike Daryoush. Since moving to Virginia I discovered MobyDick restaurant and its one of my most favorite places to eat.
My condolences to his family and friends. I met him 30 years ago at Bethesda’s Moby Dick. He didn’t know me, but treated me with respect and talked to me as if I was a good and long time friend. That was the only time I talked to him. After 28 year (two years ago) I saw him again at a Persian Picnic.
I never forget how friendly he was and how he treated me with respect. May he Rest In Peace.
In 1987 I was working evenings in the office tower next to Moby’s and would often drop in for takeout. What a memorable and nice man. He always made you feel welcome, and even special ordered some chips I particularly liked (with my Moby’s Melt, possibly the only menu item left from the beginning). His move to the Persian menu introduced a new and wonderful food to a lot of us in DC. He will be missed.
Deep condolences from our family. Long time customers at your Bethesda location. Your food inspired us to learn more about, and appreciate, Persian food.
I loved the idea of a “fast food” Iranian restaurant. Although I live far away in PA, I have always tried to visit one of the locations when I am in DC-VA area for the past 20 plus years. The Bethesda location is my favorite and I am in awe of the quality & variety of Persian food served in such a short time. I did not know Mike but I’m so sad to hear of his passing. Deepest condolences to his family and best wishes for continued success.
I knew “Mike” (he called himself Ned at that time) when he first came to the area as a student at GW. We lost track after he started the restaurants. It brings joy to know that he had a full life. I eat at Moby’s regularly but never knew that Ned was the one who started them! My condolences to all.