Zora Bila


Gault&Millau Croatia

Mediterranean
Sandra i Dane Tahirović
Price range:

Even though they had a visionary idea, everybody told them that, considering the location and the prevailing mind-set in Split, their chances of succeeding were slim. The duo who own Zora Bila and work there as chefs will soon be celebrating their sixth year since they opened their fantastic little tavern/pizzeria in a pretty run-down part of the city. As time went by they learned, improved, made daily changes to the menu. The result is the nice, polished and casual concept restaurant with its own unique expression we have the privilege to sit in today.

Zora Bila has about forty immaculately arranged seats, which is exactly how their dishes can be described. This is not a place to grab something to eat and then dash off. This is a place where people come to savour food as planned and served by Sandra and Dane. After all, the restaurant started off as a pizza place, so you can still choose from ten pizzas, as well as the widely known daily special pizzas.

The wine list is based on about twenty labels from all around Croatia encompassing Zagorje, Istria and predominantly Dalmatia (Komarna, Pelješac, Skradin, Korčula...). House wines include Karizma (Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot) and Petrač Welschriesling. You also have Croatian craft beers (Barba from Split, Medvedgrad and Fulir) and beers made by large industrial breweries.

Since day one the owners have been experimenting and making adjustments to the concept so the guests wouldn’t lose interest. Both the owners and guests take great joy in that so there’s no letting go and getting stuck in a rut. Soup, pasta and meat are culinary mainstays. Morning inspiration will take care of the rest. Street food Saturday is a special programme aimed at young people when the restaurant serves burgers, focaccia and pizza made using only the best ingredients. Hedo Wednesday is when you can try the four-course surprise menu. So this is creative cooking what we have at hand. That means that guests are familiar with the ingredients, but they have no idea as to how the ingredients will be combined. What a concept. Hats off to them!

The five-course slow food menu is available every day. We got the soup of the day (Ramen with pollen, coconut oil and algae), followed by a risotto with wild garlic pesto and prosciutto, asparagus and Hollandaise sauce, rump steak burger, beefsteak on cauliflower purée sprinkled with pistachios, boneless chicken... To reiterate, everything hinges on what they come up with on a given day, i.e. what ingredients they managed to get their hands on while roaming Split’s markets. They have their own meat suppliers, whereas they themselves age the meat used to prepare some of the dishes.

The owners of Zora Bila are the ones who’ll take your order during their breaks when they’re not busy cooking or taking phone calls. After you visit them for the second time, you’ll feel just like home. You definitely don’t want to miss out on Sadra’s desserts which range from pralines to rose pudding. The plates are arranged so tastefully you’ll have a hard time to dig in. Again the only problem is that they’re not always available...

Concept cooking, surprise dishes, programmes for all age groups, a pleasant atmosphere and people with whom you can talk just about anything. If you’re in Split, make a reservation at Zora Bila.

Author of photography: Miranda Cikotić/Pixsell

-- Your Gourmet 365

Contact number: + 385 21 782 711

E-mail: sandraidane@hotmail.com

Working hours: Tuesday - Sunday:11:00-23.00 h

Region: Dalmatia-Split

Address: Šetalište Petra Preradovića 2 21000, Split

Capacity: 80

Price range: 100-200kn

Restaurant description:

Even though they had a visionary idea, everybody told them that, considering the location and the prevailing mind-set in Split, their chances of succeeding were slim. The duo who own Zora Bila and work there as chefs will soon be celebrating their sixth year since they opened their fantastic little tavern/pizzeria in a pretty run-down part of the city. As time went by they learned, improved, made daily changes to the menu. The result is the nice, polished and casual concept restaurant with its own unique expression we have the privilege to sit in today. Zora Bila has about eighty immaculately arranged seats, which is exactly how their dishes can be described. This is not a place to grab something to eat and then dash off. This is a place where people come to savour food as planned and served by Sandra and Dane. After all, the restaurant started off as a pizza place, so you can still choose from ten pizzas, as well as the widely known daily special pizzas.

Awards and recognitions:

Gault&Millau: Delicious lunch in Split
Seasonal menu
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