Esquire Names Chef Doug Katz's Zhug One of 23 Best New Restaurants in America in 2020


  • Photo by Emanuel Wallace

Esquire isn't telling Clevelanders anything we didn't already know, but readers and diners across the country will now also know that Zhug, Doug Katz's inventive, fun Middle Eastern spot in Cleveland Heights, is one of the best restaurants going these days.

In fact, Esquire says it's one of the 23 best restaurants that opened in the entire country this year.

According to the mag, which put Zhug No. 7 on the list:

You’re going to have a problem if you go to Zhug, because you’re going to want to eat everything. The menu seems to have been written by a hypnotist. Hummus with curried lamb and apricots? Yes. Hummus with nigella seeds and burnt onions? Okay, that too. Smoked pastrami short rib? Yeah, throw that in as well. Skip lunch that day, gather friends, and clear space on the tabletop, because chef Douglas Katz’s vision of the food of the Middle East is the stuff that delirious feasts are made of. 

"I'm so proud of the Zhug team for getting this recognition, but even more importantly, that they have continued to put their all into their work each and every day," Katz told Scene. "We are all excited for the day when we can reopen and share this great reward with the community."

If there's a list of places Cleveland diners can't wait to get back to once the pandemic ends, it's hard to imagine Zhug doesn't top the list, so Katz and company will have plenty of folks to celebrate with.

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