Zara Mediterranean Cuisine (closed)

Restaurant Photo

Own this Restaurant?

Contact us about adding a photo gallery.
  • Not Rated Yet

Based on 0 Ratings

1498 Pacific Avenue # 300
Tacoma, WA 98402-4208
(253) 572-1222

Greek, Italian, Mediterranean
Credit Cards Accepted, Full Bar, Outdoor Dining, Vegetarian-Friendly
Avg. Meal:

The Review

Reviewed by: Jake de Paul, Jennifer Johnson

With authenticity as the goal, Samar Hamameh, a Middle Eastern woman from Jordan, came to teach the kitchen staff at Zara Mediterranean how to prepare traditional Greek, Lebanese and Turkish dishes. The restaurant's location, at the corner of 15th and Pacific Avenue on the second floor above Rainier Pacific Bank in downtown Tacoma, can make it easy to miss. Chef James Barbara is no longer at Zara. Owner Haitham Joudeh takes the helm in the kitchen, as the recipes were his to begin with.

JENNIFER JOHNSON: Greek bruschetta is a toasted baguette with chunked Greek salad on top. Grilled octopus appetizer is a salad itself, with sliced pieces of slightly chewy tentacle served with mixed greens dressed conservatively in zesty olive oil. I immediately picked out lemon, mild garlic and pepper. Simple tabouleh salad wraps were an instant favorite of mine back in August when the restaurant first opened; they're just as good now. Mint and parsley dominated the flavor playing field, followed by lemon, garlic, cucumber, onion and earthy bulgar wheat.

JASON DE PAUL: The mixed grill kebab entrée of smoky lamb, spiced beef and chicken is tender and served off the skewer atop a bed of cinnamon spiked seasoned rice. Sadly, during my experience, the rice cooled so quickly it was completely cold after just a few bites. Luckily the wait staff quickly brought a new steaming platter of rice. From the skewers, red bell pepper, mushroom, white onion and zucchini are roasted lightly - retaining a nice snap.

JOHNSON: The T-bone lamb chop entree arrived with three chops the size of a child's fist - proving to be more than enough meat. Plump and exactly medium as ordered, lamb gave easily at knife's touch and melted in my mouth. A smattering of fat provided additional "wow" factor to the already huge flavors in the pomegranate demi-glace. I sighed with pleasure as I ate this dish; it was that good. Rosemary roasted potatoes and asparagus were excellent breaks from the potent richness of the meat. During dinner, the belly dancers, though skilled and beautiful, seemed to make people uncomfortable. I'm not sure the dancers fit with the upscale Mediterranean restaurant that Zara is striving to be.

DE PAUL: I didn't mind the dancers at all when I went with the fellas and sat in the circular bar - no surprise there. But with my wife along I felt weird. I didn't know where to look. As for dessert, I knew exactly what to do: skip the trucked-in stuff. House-made baklava with pistachios is the way to go. I loved the pistachio saltiness and thought it leveled out the syrupy sweet honey glaze. Once you go pistachio, you never go back.

Hours:  11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday to Thursday, open until 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday. Parking is validated in the adjacent Pacific Avenue garage and Commerce Street lot.


User Reviews of Zara Mediterranean Cuisine (closed) (0)

Northwest Military is not responsible for the content of these reviews. Northwest Military reserves the right to remove reviews at their discretion.

No comments have been posted. Be the first and add one below.

Leave A Review

(This will not be published)


Browse Restaurants

Restrict Browse To: