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Interview with Eddie Ghazal of Zammitti’s Italian Ristoranté - Atascocita

Interview with Eddie Ghazal of Zammitti’s Italian Ristoranté - Atascocita

Published: Jun 27, 2019, 11:30am

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As part of our ongoing "Getting to Know Your Local Businesses" series, this week we sat down with Eddie Ghazal, owner of Zammitti’s Italian Ristoranté.

Tell us a bit about your business: What does your business offer, and how long have you been around?
We have now re-opened for lunch and dinner! After sustaining incredible damage from Hurricane Harvey, we are proud to announce that we have completely remodeled our restaurant … new decor, furniture and now complete with a fully stocked liquor and wine bar.

As before, we offer a wide selection of appetizers, soups and salads, entrees, wine and beer, including some favorites such as Chicken Marsala and the Mediterranean Affair – my creation and a customer favorite.
The restaurant originally opened February, 2011.

How did you decide to get involved in this line of work?
My father was Italian, and my mother Lebanese and they had one thing in common; they both loved the best food! They both passed on their recipes to me from past generations. Being raised in a melting pot of cultures, I developed a passion for and knowledge about a diverse array of foods.
My restaurant experience in the Houston area furthered my exposure to different foods, including steak and other gourmet delicacies, along with a French cuisine experience. I worked at La Tour D'Argent, a French restaurant on Ella Blvd., as well as multiple restaurants between Houston and Galveston, including an Italian restaurant, The San Luis Steakhouse, the private Harbor Walk Yacht Club and another restaurant offering gourmet cuisine. Those experiences helped me hone my skills and kept my desire growing toward one day owning my own restaurant.
In 2005 while at The San Luis Steakhouse, I was awarded Manager of the Year in Galveston County and the restaurant was honored under my tenure as a distinguished restaurant (#47) in North America, Canada, and the Americas. Wine Spectator Magazine also acknowledged the restaurant as having the best wine selections in the U.S. in 2005.

Tell us a couple things you are proud of your business. What are you known for? What separates you from the competition?
We are proud to offer more than exquisite cooking; we make a memorable meal. With the highest quality of fresh ingredients and outstanding service, we create an unforgettable dining experience on the lake with a Sicilian flare.
No one could have foreseen the hurricane aftermath; for us, it’s been a year and a half nightmare.
We are so thankful to all who supported us. We had loyal customers here helping us immediately clean up and bringing food and water for our team. Our staff continued to stay connected with us.

What is your favorite part of running this business?
I love greeting and visiting with my numerous loyal, repeat customers. They’ve been patiently waiting for us to re-open. I’m usually the first and last person that they see when they visit. I’ve made so many good friends in this community! 
The same front of the house and kitchen staff (seven total) are returning to serve our customers again; it’s an unbelievable blessing! I also love working with my son, Robin, who manages our amazing servers and kitchen staff, as well as oversees our public relations efforts. 

Who is your ideal customer/client? Who do you serve best? 
Anyone who enjoys authentic Italian food in a family atmosphere is our ideal customer.
If you’re looking for a place nestled in Kings Harbor with picturesque lake views, with old-world charm of our beloved Italy and a place to relax and enjoy life, it’s perfect.
Our customers have ranged in age from one week old to 105 years young. Everyone is part of our family! 

Is there any other information you'd like your potential customers/clients to know about your business?
We offer a happy hour with discounted drinks and special bites Monday through Thursdays. Drink specials on Sunday.
A long-time community advocate, we have supported numerous local charities, including St. Martha Catholic Church and other local churches, schools and charities.  Donating 5% of the total tab of diners who are associated with these local organizations back to their non-profit, we have donated consistently each year and will continue to give back to the Kingwood area.

How do you see your business growing and improving over the next couple of years?
Since we have reopened, we couldn’t have asked for a better community … with everyone supporting that we are back and greater than ever to serve our neighbors.
We have recently added a canopy over our outside seating with fans and lights. Now, no matter what time of the day, our guests can sit outside and enjoy the wonderful lake view and our quality food. Visit our website for upcoming event details!

To learn more about Zammitti’s Italian Restaurant, visit our profile at Atascocita.com.

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