Ali Hijazi opened his third Zamaan Cafe in the Colonnade in October, but he had to close his first location on Packard to do it. It was a question of manpower. “There’s just too many things going on to do it all myself,” he says. The first location opened in early 2010 as the Zamaan Cafe and Bakery, followed by a second Zamaan Cafe (minus the bakery) in the Plymouth Green Shopping Center in June.
Both the Plymouth Green restaurant and the new one serve the same menu of traditional Lebanese food, with one big difference–starting in mid-December the new place was planning to add breakfast dishes both American and Lebanese. Hijazi mentions foul, made with fava beans and hummus, as an example of the latter. Labne, a combination of yogurt and vegetables, is another–“it’s good with tea,” he says. They’ll have omelets, too, served open-faced with the egg on the bottom and the ingredients heaped on top.
Hijazi will also serve his own fresh-baked pita bread because when he sublet the former Cafe Zamaan and Bakery to Tmaz Taqueria, he retained access to the ovens. The loaves will be pretty flat, even for pita bread, because he refuses to serve anything close to the kind of thick, fluffy bread you see piled high in baskets in many restaurants. “You get filled with dough, and that’s not what I want to do,” he says. “I want people to taste the food, not just come in and eat hot bread.”
Zamaan Cafe, 865 W. Eisenhower in the Colonnade Shopping Center, 769-1113.Mon.-Thurs. 10:30 a.m.-9 p.m., Fri.-Sat. 10:30 a.m.-10 p.m., Sun. 11 a.m.-9 p.m.