At a recent visit to the surfer-themed Zim Zari California Coastal Grill in Massapequa Park, I found a killer white peach sangria. Pretty decent shrimp fajitas ($14.95,) too.
Other things, though, were more uneven.
A friend's filet mignon tacos with tomato garlic salsa ($7.95) tasted a bit off, so we informed the waitress — who immediately said she would get the chef. First thing the guy did was take a defensive tack. So uncomfortable. And unnecessary, since he ultimately did offer the choice of another item. Which is what our server should have been instructed to do from the outset, no questions asked.
The substituted “volcano” shrimp soft flour tacos ($7.50) turned out to be a lively number. Another good pick was a chicken “Napa” bowl ($7.95) with Asian noodles, vegetables and cubes of crisp poultry in a fragrant coconut peanut sauce. But tuna tacos ($7.65), with an Asian-Latin spin, were surprisingly flavorless.
Days later, I called the restaurant to ask who had taken over since starting chef Tom Gloster had departed. According to co-owner Keith Giannadeo, the place is still using Gloster’s recipes but has no head chef in the house. Perhaps the time has come to get one.
Zim Zari California Coastal Grill is at 4964 Merrick Rd., Massapequa Park, 516-809-6960.
Above: White peach sangria at Zim Zari in Massapequa Park