Executive chef Ian Winslade is once again partnering with Ryan and Jonathan Akly of Restaurant Consulting Group. The trio, known for Italian-influenced Tre Vele and West Coast-inspired Mission + Market, plan to open modern Lebanese restaurant Zakia in Buckhead this summer. Located in the Modera Prominence development, 3699 Lenox Road, Zakia will serve lunch and dinner seven days a week, as well as weekend brunch.
Named for the Aklys’ grandmother who had roots in Lebanon and the Middle East, Zakia will serve mezze, meats, and seafood made with family recipes—with a twist.
“We need to pay homage to the dishes, but we want to continue to push the envelope as well, to make it feel very modern,” Winslade says. “The trend in the U.S. is Mediterranean-style food right now. Look at how well Delbar and Rumi’s Kitchen have done.”
The menu is still in development, but Winslade says to expect hummus, babaganoush, vegetable and poultry skewers, fish, and Mediterranean pizza on flatbread so thin it’s almost a cracker. Though some dishes will overlap with those at other local Mediterranean restaurants, Winslade says his will have a French-Arabic (Lebanese) interpretation as opposed to Persian.
“I was classically French trained with a lot of Mediterranean influence in that training. I spent a lot of time in my youth in the Mediterranean. I feel like I understand the spices of the region and what we are trying to portray and am familiar with the ingredients in the food,” Winslade says.
The beverage program will also lean Mediterranean with Lebanese and Greek wines, as well as cocktails and beer. The Aklys will work with a yet-unnamed beverage director to design the drink list.
The 6,000-square-foot space will seat more than 200 guests across the dining room, bar/lounge, and multiple private dining areas. An open kitchen will provide views of a pita oven, while the glass restaurant wall can open to bring the outside in.
“It’s really bright, open, and airy—it makes you feel like you’re being transported to the Mediterranean,” Winslade says.