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Award-winning lobster restaurant closing sole Columbus location; new concept moving in

Award-winning lobster restaurant closing sole Columbus location; new concept moving in

Sav McKee

First there was the food truck, then the storefront, and now…back to grabbing the nationwide famous lobster rolls from a food truck only.

Cousins Maine Lobster, which started in 2012 by Maine natives Sabin Lomac and Jim Tselikis, and is famously known for their stint on season 5 of Shark Tank (Baraba Corcoran invested $55,000 in the company) is officially closing their restaurant located inside of Budd Dairy Hall, effective Monday, May 20, according to their website.

Three years ago, Cousins partnered with Budd Dairy Hall, allowing Columbus to get their hands on fresh Maine lobster rolls almost every day instead of just when the food truck was around their vicinity.  “We are immensely grateful to Cousin’s Maine Lobster for their partnership since the opening of Budd Dairy three years ago,” said Jeremy Hughes, General Manager of Budd Dairy Food Hall. “Their presence has been instrumental in shaping the culinary landscape and identity of our food hall…”


Zaki Mediterranean Grill will take over Cousins Maine Lobster’s former space inside Budd Dairy Hall. Ahmed Qaraja, Zaki Mediterranean Grill’s owner and founder, moved to the U.S. from Palestine in 2006. Following stints at various Columbus restaurants, he ventured out to establish Zaki Mediterranean Grill, now operating three food trucks in addition to Budd Dairy Food Hall. Zaki, translating to “delicious” in Arabic, delivers authentic Mediterranean flavors, boasting a menu featuring chicken kebabs, gyros, bowls, shawarma, and an array of appetizers such as falafel, baba ghanoush, hummus, and marinated grape leaves.

“Our team has appreciated the opportunity to grow our restaurant business in Hatch and establish a loyal following of guests who enjoy our mouth-water Mediterranean creations,” says Qaraja. “We are dedicated to delivering exceptional, authentic Mediterranean food, and look forward to becoming a chef partner and further developing our relationship with the Columbus community.”

No photo description available.
Photo via Zaki’s Facebook

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