Many years ago I went to Il Corsaro restaurant at 920 Commercial. It was a disaster (though I can’t remember the details) and I chose not to go back. Later, the place was re-branded as Zesty Restaurant. I gave that a try and it was another awful experience. Some years ago it was re-branded once again as Zawa, but I was twice bitten and shied away from it.
However, last night we were going to a meeting in the 900 block and, for some reason, we both thought it would be a good idea to give Zawa a try. And we are both glad that we did.
Zawa is a big place that had only one or two tables in use. The size and the emptiness robs the place of any ambience and that can be off-putting. But the service was fast and friendly which put us more at our ease. Burgers, pastas and pub-like appetizers make up the bulk of the menu — and nothing wrong with that because that was the kind of food we were looking for.
We shared the beef tenderloin tips and the penne Toscana. The tips were great and came with a pungent dipping sauce that really zinged the palate. The penne was perfectly cooked and its sauce was gloriously redolent with garlic (I guess garlic non-lovers would have a different take.)
This is not fine dining, just good basic cooking that exactly fitted our needs last night. This was a happy chance for us and we will certainly return.