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Texas Tasty

"If you’re unfamiliar with Moroccan food, I’d definitely suggest you go with one of these options the first time you go to ZOA; after you try the food, it definitely won’t be your last time there, so you can always build your own the next time!"


22 Best Halal Restaurants in Houston

Inspired by chef Youssef Nafaa's upbringing in Morocco, Zoa celebrates street foods with an array of buildable sandwiches, salads, and bread from Morocco. Though diners can customize their experience, favorites include the Marrakech. Named after the vacation-hot spot, a sandwich or salad is loaded with beef tagine, and topped with confit onions, greens, sweet potato, pickled red onion cabbage, cinnamon raisin onion, and a spicy green sauce.


Houston Food Finder

The dishes echo the street foods that Naffa grew up with. “I started with ZOA Moroccan because it is the food of my childhood— the food my grandmother and mother cooked and what my brothers and I ate on the streets on my way from our farm to school every day.”


Culture Map Houston

"Zoa’s proteins, which include beef, chicken, and lamb, are all halal. They’re paired with a wide array of vegetables, including roasted root vegetables, confit onions, feta cheese, and cucumber-tomato salad. To finish, diners may opt for any of seven sauces such as harissa, mint-avocado yogurt, or garlic aioli."


Community Impact

“The best things in life, starting with the food we eat, are the simple things,” Nafaa said in the news release. “I have been fortunate to travel to many fascinating places around the world and have enjoyed the most exotic foods prepared and served at the finest restaurants. But in my travels, I get as much pleasure from eating what the locals eat every day—perhaps even more pleasure from these experiences, I would say.”


The Leader

Approaching and entering Zoa Moroccan Kitchen is a surreal experience, almost like being whisked away to market in Fez or Rabat, Morocco. A patio with flower pots hanging overhead and a mix of modern wooden accents, brightly-colored murals, and a corner table next to the window with iconic blue tiles give off both contemporary and classic vibes.

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