Zebra, the long-standing French restaurant in the SouthPark area, has closed as of Monday, an employee confirmed by phone.
The restaurant, launched in 2001 by Jim Alexander and Pete Pappas, had been bought by Kim Salahie and renovated about a year ago; he planned a “refresh” of its French-American menu and atmosphere, including a revamped patio area and a menu that kept standards but added some more contemporary offerings. Salahie was not immediately available for comment.
Alexander, who served as chef and bought out partner Pappas about three years after opening, had come to the business after years as a club chef. He retired and with his wife, Lisa, planned to spend more time with family.
Monday afternoon, he said, “We’re definitely heartbroken. … I don’t know what’s going to happen. There’s a slim possibility I could come back in and operate. I may tweak the concept and do something more hip and fun – being in Asheville kind of rubbed off on me.
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“We didn’t feel the reality of it until Saturday (apparently their last day). We had our hopes that something good was going to happen and it would stay open.”