Au Za'atar

4.5
654 reviews
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$30 and under
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Lebanese
Au Za’atar is a Lebanese / Middle Eastern restaurant which has quickly become a destination in the East Village for New Yorker's and tourists alike, serving family recipes from Lebanon and other middle eastern counrty's. Drop in for mezze and a glass of Lebanese wine or beer and enjoy a romantic dinner or an intimate meal with freinds and family. Our menu crafted by head Chef Tarik Fallous highlights the best of Lebanese and Middle Eastern cuisine with a focus on fresh, seasonal ingredients and homemade dishes. The warm, inviting dining room is perfect for grabbing a glass of wine and mezze at the bar or a full and flavorful meal at an intimate table while the spices and music transport you to the exotic Middle East. During the warm days of Spring and Summer, join us at our beautiful outdoor cafe, which has been called one of the best outdoor eating spaces in New York.
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What 654 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.5based on recent ratings
4.7
food
4.5
service
4.4
ambience
4.2
value
Noise · Moderate
84% of people would recommend it to a friend
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NT
New York Area
11 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 5

I ordered the tableside schwarma (lamb) and I was sitting outside, as well as a Fatoush salad. watermelon juice & glass of wine with my date. One thing I wish that was mentioned online was that if you order the tableside schwarma outside they have to cook it fully in the kitchen which took an hour since they can't plug in the grill outside. We were warned as we sat outside, but I did plan this date to be outdoors and to order specifically that dish. The schwarma was good, but somehow was arrived to the table cold and I wish they gave less fries and more meat, but seriously the meat was seasoned very well. The Fatoush salad was disappointing, I've had Lebanese food many times and usually that salad in other places is more crisp and fresh and has a lot more sumac. Some of the leaves looked like they were sitting in dressing for awhile and again, I was really looking forward to more sumac spice. Overall, it was nice and staff and ambiance was nice, but I doubt I would go back it was just the novelty that I wanted checked off my list.

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WB
New England
3 reviews
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 5ambience 1

Great service and all, but if you get that table side shawarma, it will be a terrible experience. Low value for what it costs (~$100) and extremely inconvenient with the heat on your face and tiny pieces of bread you’re provided. Wouldn’t recommend for anyone looking for a good dinner experience.

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OT
Hawaii
7 reviews
Dined on May 9, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

Good food, mint lemonade is a must !!

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OT
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on May 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Real authentic arabic food the way it should be!

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OT
New York Area
8 reviews
Dined on May 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wonderful food! Beautiful ambiance and intimate feel. Highly recommend!

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SF
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on May 4, 2019
Overall 2food 4service 1ambience 3

The first time I went to this restaurant, I had a great experience! So, I dared to go back a second time, and received terrible service. First my husband and I waited at the host stand for 10 minutes for someone to give us our table reservation-when a staff member finally came, she completely ignored us!! Then after we get her attention, she proceeds to tell me she doesn't see my reservation, and then offers to sit us outside in the cold. So I show her my opentable confirmation, THEN she somehow finds my reservation! After we ordered our entrees, they send another waiter to double check our order (weird). Then, they bring out my husbands food before mine, and I sat there waiting for my food for 30 minutes after him!! They then casually drop off my plate to me as if it was no big deal that my husband was finished with his food as it was getting cold and he had no choice but to eat. By the time my food came I was full! I then complain to the waitress of why the food was not timed to come out together like ANY normal functioning food establishment would, which she responded to with a blank look. At the end, no one offered to adjust the check or give us something extra to make up for an awkward dinner!! Will definitely not be returning to this restaurant, and if they are reading this- you need to hire more competent staff!! It is being run by amateurs!

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DW
New York Area
29 reviews
Dined on May 4, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 2ambience 3

The lamb shoulder is amazing, deliciously garnished.

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on May 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Went in the to try the at the table shawarma and it was really delicious. The fries was beyond the best fries I’ve ever had and the mint lemonade was so refreshing. Definitely recommend to try this experience!

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on April 27, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

Food was amazing .

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DN
1 review
Dined on April 26, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Outstanding food, exceptional service. Cant wait to go back.

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on April 21, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great restaurant, phenomenal food and service

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m
Los Angeles
15 reviews
Dined on April 19, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Really good food!!!! My first time dining and if you like lebanese food this is the spot ! Service was great!

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on April 16, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 3

Food was great, hummus was not as thick as expected, did not get my preferred requested seat so kept getting bumped a lot on the back of our seats. Very busy place, got the mixed grilled platter good for two people to share.

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Philadelphia
9 reviews
Dined on April 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

DELISHHHHH! Only complaint is that I felt like I was sitting on top of the tables next to mine and it was a struggle to for all our delicious spresds onto one table but otherwise it was phenomenal!

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DJ
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on April 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Staff was very accommodating and food was excellent. Will be going there again very soon.

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m
New York Area
59 reviews
Dined on April 7, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

When we observed that more than half the customers appeared to be Middle Eastern, we felt that we had come to the right place for a Lebanese dinner, and in fact we had. There is a large varied selection of mezes, all with bright and authentic flavors. We ordered the tableside Shawarma with lamb which was excellent. We were advised that it would require 25 minutes to an hour to arrive, so we had ordered a large number of mezes, and then it arrived way too soon after only 10-15 minutes. The service, despite criticisms in a number of reviews, was helpful, friendly and efficient, although definitely not effusive, actually a good thing. The wine list, that included a number of Lebanese wines, was distinctly overpriced. The seating is OK, but the decor is nondescript, and the noise level is too loud.

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SH
1 review
Dined on April 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a beautiful experience celebrating a special occasion- service was attentive, polite, and food was delicious- we had the lamb table side shawarma- very good

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AK
1 review
Dined on March 31, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This restaurant is an amazing place to have great food and ambiance.

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H
Philadelphia
5 reviews
Dined on March 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We were there for a friend’s birthday was fun, the food is amazing, servers are very nice & helpful

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JB
New York Area
1 review
Dined on March 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Loved it! Food is delicious andinteresting, and the service was friendly without being intrusive. We enjoyed our experience thoroughly.

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OT
1 review
Dined on March 26, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 3

It just sucked that we had to wait outside for more than an hour despite having a reservation but other than that everything was great. Loved the food :)

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on March 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It was amazing. The staff is so sweet and the food is just WOW

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on March 22, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The server Sherif was very attentive and pleasant. Food came on a timely manner and was delicious. The spicy falafel is to dieeee for!!!! ❤️❤️❤️

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IZ
1 review
Dined on March 17, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I suggest to book ahead as they are very busy and there is not much room to wait inside during a cold day. We had a booking for 8:30 and got seated at that time. Food was great and service as well.bit crowded but that’s the city for you. I would recommend and go back here.

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on March 17, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Jovial atmosphere. Attentive, friendly staff, despite the cramped quarters and noise level. Cold by the door with multiple parties exiting and entering on a cold winter night.

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SL
1 review
Dined on March 17, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a wonderful and memorable time as it was our sons 13th birthday also. The team also put up a nice birthday song also and it was just amazing. the food was super and hosts very accommodating to all that we need. A++

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San Francisco
1 review
Dined on March 17, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 1

Staff and owner weren’t accommodating of guests in our party with food allergies. Owner said every dish had nuts in the preparation and he wouldn’t make any without. When we asked why, he asked us to leave the restaurant as he didn’t want to serve us, or attempt to even make a few dishes. Promptly left at that point and won’t ever go back. Took our party of 8 to ilili where we had a great time!

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on March 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 3

We went for a casual dinner and I think it’s the best Lebanese food in the whole NYC. . We ordered jibnaey manoshey, baba ganosh, spicy hummus and the best of all chicken showarma. Our host Linda was so sweet and nice . She explained to us each and every detail about the ingredients of few things about which we were concerned. Our experience was so good that within a week we went again and enjoyed our visit there

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H
1 review
Dined on March 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Yes, great vibe. Awesome food, perfect serving size. A must revisit type of place!
And great service!

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JC
1 review
Dined on March 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We tried the humus appetizer and the beef Shawarma and I gotta say we loved it! We had Linda as our waitress and she was so attentive especially with out toddler lol her service was outstanding! Definitely recommend! And definitely will be back 😊

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j
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined on March 10, 2019
Overall 1food 5service 1ambience 4

I wish the service was as good as the food. We were warned the lamb shawarma would take anywhere from 20-90 minutes. When a different waitress came out to say both the lamb and beef shawarma would be an hour but the chicken would come right out, we agreed that the chicken would be the best decision. Other tables that had gotten sat after us had received their shawarma beforehand. I asked why they had theirs while we still hadn't received ours nor did we receive our appetizer at this point ( another situation being the waitress obviously forgot to put that order in). Our waitress tried to assure me the other table ordered beef but I was specifically told beef and lamb would be an hour wait. After a back and forth our original order of lamb came out. Upon finishing our meal and receiving our check, our waitress tried to charge us for both chicken and lamb shawarma. An honest mistake but being I was aggravated at the entire scenario I was livid at this point. I will never return to this establishment because the aggravation of the horrendous service outweighed the experience and the outstanding quality of food.

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on March 10, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Small space. Kept getting hit by people walking through

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JO
1 review
Dined on March 9, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 4

Food is excellent, not happy with service, waiters and waitresses trying to rush you to finish your dinner n leave. The shawarma style dish takes 45 minutes to arrive to the table ( is not cheap ) and they want you to devour it n leave, this is supposed to be an experience!!! They sat a table of ten there was a space for 8, next to us we were all tight n uncomfortable, trips to the bathroom awful n the poor guy eating at the corner of the table. Just not cool!!
They can do a better job, food is great.

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OT
1 review
Dined on March 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent food! Authentic and very tasty

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EZ
1 review
Dined on March 3, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 2

Excellent food ! Great service !
Only thing ...Tables are simply too close together particularly when you have the shawarma machine on your table.

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SA
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on March 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had 7pm reservations on a Saturday night. We arrived 15 minutes early and they were able to seat us at that time. The tables are close together and it's a little tight, but that is not unusual for New York City. Our waiter greeted us quickly and when we asked questions about the menu he was great in helping us to determine how much to order. Everything sounded so good we were having a hard time deciding. We went with the table-side schwarma, which is not on the menu. That was surprising to us since every table around us had it. We ordered the beef schwarma, hummus and mujadara, a wonderful dish of rice, lentils and onions. The flavors of everything were wonderful and we all commented that it was the best schwarma outside the middle east we had eaten. We will definitely be back as there were so many things on the menu we want to try. We were stuffed that we didn't even look at desserts!

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OT
New England
1 review
Dined on February 19, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It was amazing! The lamb shawarma was to die for. They went above and beyond to make sure our experience was enjoyable. Not a single thing on the menu that I wouldn’t recommend. 10/10 recommend and that we will be back.

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OT
1 review
Dined on February 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I absolutely loved everything about the restaurant ! The best part was the food and service, thanks to Linda & Amira! The Lamb table side was to die for !!! Thank you !

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J
1 review
Dined on February 16, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 4

All around average experience - nothing really stood out in either direction. But overall for$100+ for two people there are a lot of establishments in NY that offer better value. Not bad ... significantly more hype that execution to this spot imo.

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JR
New York Area
1 review
Dined on February 16, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

A little crowded, left the place smelling like the food i had just eaten. Food was delicious and the service was excellent.

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