Nourollahi scored with a header in the 21st minute in Tehran’s Azadi Stadium.
Esteghlal midfielder Farshid Bagheri missed a penalty in the 45th minute.
The chair of FIFA's Referees' Committee Pierluigi Collina also watched the match from the stadium.
Esteghlal controlled possession in the second half but struggled to get shots on target.
“It was a great win for us but we have not finished yet. I think we will have a long road ahead of us to win the title for the third year in a row,” Persepolis coach Branko Ivankovic said in the post-match news conference.
Persepolis cemented their place at the top of Iran professional League with 48 points, five points above Esteghlal.
Tehran derby is a football match between the two prominent Tehran clubs Esteghlal (Blues) and Persepolis (Reds).