Zarzour's Featured In Gourmet Magazine

Monday, November 1, 2004
Zarzour's is on Rossville Avenue off of Main Street. Click to enlarge.
Zarzour's is on Rossville Avenue off of Main Street. Click to enlarge.
- photo by John Wilson

The best plate lunch in Chattanooga can be found at Zarzour's restaurant, according to the November issue of Gourmet magazine.

The article by Jane and Michael Stern says Zarzour's is "in a gray brick hut across from a junkyard in a stark neighborhood where most buildings were vacated long ago."

It says it's not easy to find Zarzour's, and it's not listed in the Yellow Pages (the number is in the residential listings under the name of the manager's mother-in-law).

And it's only open 15 hours a week - Monday-Friday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The writers found a mostly well-dressed crowd huddled around the 10 tiny tables.

The article notes that Zarzour's is now managed by Shannon Fuller, wife of Joe Fuller. It was founded by Joe's grandfather, Charlie Zarzour, in 1918, making it Chattanooga's oldest family-run restaurant. The Zarzours had come from Lebanon via Syria. Shortly before opening day, Charlie Zarzour's wife died, and he raised five children in the restaurant's back room.

Zarzour's was later operated by George and Rose Zarzour, then by Shirley Fuller, mother of Joe. Shirley continues to make the desserts, including lemon icebox pie, banana pudding and millionaire pie.

The article includes two recipes from Zarzour's - johnnycake and coconut pineapple muffins.

The article is titled: "Chattanooga Chew-Chew. It takes more than a road map to track down the best hot lunch in the land."

Zarzour's is off Main Street at 1627 Rossville Ave.

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