What a place this turned out to be. Owned by Orzo Trattoria, ZaZa, located on Route 1 North in Saugus, MA. It's right in the same plaza as Jimmy's Steer House and IHOP. Please forgive the picture quality, I only had my camera phone with me that night. Then again, fuzzy pictures may help this place look a little better.
We enter ZaZa to be greeted cheerfully by a person asking how many was in our party, then proceeded to tell us that it will only take about 10-15 mins to seat us, and asked us to have a seat. Just a minute later, our waitress came over with the alcohol menu and took our orders.
I ordered the ZaZa Margarita, my friend ordered the same.
Looking around, I noticed this place had an atmosphere and crowd of mostly cougars and older men looking for a quick score.
About 20 mins later, we all heard this tremendous crash on the ground. One of us chuckled, "Watch that be our drinks." Funny thing is our waitress came over a minute after the Big Bang and apologized, stating that there were no more margarita glasses and it would take a little longer to wash some for us. We all laughed that uneasy and agitated laugh.
Finally, around 30 mins after entering the restaurant, we received our drinks. I was happy at this point since the place had started to fill rather quickly, and as long as I have a bench and some people to watch, I'm pretty happy.
The ZaZa Margarita was served in a tall curved glass with not much flavor other than waaaay too much alcohol, salt, whiskey sour mix and lime. It wasn't off to a good start in my book.
45 mins after arriving, we were finally seated at a table. It felt good to not stand anymore, and actually have a place to sit my drink down. We were again given the alcohol menus and now the food menus. The dishes and appetizers all appealed to me, and sounded good. I decided to start off with some fried calamari, supposedly with a little hint of hot spice, along with another drink.
To me, the calamari was actually delightful, very very spicy served with slices of jalapeno and chopped red and green bell peppers. The lettuce could have been fresher and the calamari could have been fried to a less oily and greasy texture.
The drinks took awfully long to get to our table and we were promised to be amazed, a promise they couldn't keep.
The Fruity Pebble Martini smelled exactly like Kool-Aid Cherry. Served with a slice of orange, it was still unable to achieve a nice balance in taste due to the overpowering taste of too much alcohol.
The Cookies N Cream Martini was rimmed with pieces of broken chocolate and smelled a little bit like coffee. It tasted like a bad chocolate shake made with waaay too much booze and very little taste of cookies or chocolate. A very dissapointing drink especially when the menu listing states Godiva chocolate was supposed to be used.
The Classic Margarita with chambord served with a slice of lime smelled like a Cherry Yankee Candle. It was very well balanced with a nice amount of sour mix and fruitiness. At least they can make custom drinks right.
The salad I was served smelled like it was taking a bath in vinegar, at least the veggies were fresh and the dressing was creamy.
The cheese ravioli were covered in sauce. The sauce was nice and sweet, and tasted of real tomatoes and basil. The ravioli were cooked to al dente and the stuffing was too salty with strong tastes of ricotta and parmesean cheese. With no sauce this dish would be too salty, no wonder they dumped so much of it over the ravioli.
The chicken parmesean was covered in the same, sweet tomato sauce, that being covered with parmesean cheese and served with a side of ziti. Even with the gallon of tomato sauce on this dish, the chicken remained terribly salty. The chicken had a lingering taste that can only be described as being fried in oil that was overused or should have been changed at least a week ago.
In total, with all of the drinks and food we ordered and couldn't finish, the bill came to roughly around 144.00 for 4 people.
I can say with a closing, that this place in particular is not one that you want to go to unless you are already drunk. The food is terrible, the alcohol is purposely filled with too much alcohol, the music is loud, and there are plenty of cougar drunks around to chat with.
If this was my restaurant, I wouldn't even call it that. Lets save some money during this economic crisis and fire all the food staff, and stop serving everything but bar food. Just call it a martini bar, because this is exactly what it is.
ZaZa, you havent even passed puberty yet. You still have a face as smooth as a baby's bottom. I would not send anyone here unless they wanted to get drunk and pick someone up.