Restaurant and nightclub hopes to bring dancing and date night to downtown Griffith

Zuchez Restaurant and Bar opened in downtown Griffith.

Downtown Griffith now has a restaurant/nightclub where people can dine on lobster tails, dance the night away to old school house music with 56-ounce apple margaritas or Godiva macchiato martinis, and return the following morning for some home-cooked biscuits and gravy.

Zuchez Restaurant and Bar at 211 N. Broad St. aims to "have a downtown feel with hometown prices" and "bring date night to town," owner Patty Zuniga said.

She, her brother Daniel Zuniga and their friend Jaime Sanchez Jr., partnered to open the 260-person establishment, which is a family restaurant by day and nightspot after hours.

"We really worked hard to create this and open up this business," Patty Zuniga said. "We love Griffith – it's a quiet cozy town with an old town feel. We love the festivals, the whole environment of Griffith, its character, its charm. It has a lot of breweries and sports bars. We wanted to offer something different, a place where people can let loose or have a romantic dinner."

Zuchez, which employs about 20 workers and is looking to hire a few more, serves as a family restaurant from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and is restricted to adults 21 and older after 7 p.m.

"We want it to have an adult lounge type feel," she said.

Zuchez has live entertainment every Wednesday, Friday and Saturday, including rock bands on Fridays and a Saturday night dance party with a wide array of musical genres including country, salsa, merengue and house music.

The bar serves a 64-ounce margarita, wine, craft beers, and cocktails like a pomegranate martini.

"All of our liquor is at least mid-level liquor," she said. "There's nothing bottom-shelf."

The restaurant side seats about 90 and offers breakfast staples like omelettes, sausage patties and steak and eggs. The lunch menu includes sausage, burgers, tacos, chicken tenders, a unique Italian beef that's less salty and more thickly sliced, and jumbo wings that are "almost like biting into a real drumstick," Zuniga said.

Dinner offerings include steak, lobster, crab legs, prawns and pork chops.

"We have a sophisticated simplicity," she said. "We have home-cooked meals with big portions using old family recipes. It's all made fresh. Nothing is frozen."

Zuchez plans to have events, such as wine and canvas paint nights, shows by local musicians, a youth jam and a Halloween bash.

"We're a happening new place," she said. "We're simple yet sophisticated. We try to have a comfortable vibe in this place. It's something different."

The restaurant is open from 6 a.m. to 3 a.m. Monday through Saturday, and from 10 a.m. to 12 a.m. Sunday.

For more information, call 219-595-0103 or find Zuchez on Facebook.

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Business reporter

Joseph S. Pete is a Lisagor Award-winning business reporter who covers steel, industry, unions, the ports, retail, banking and more. The Indiana University grad has been with The Times since 2013 and blogs about craft beer, culture and the military.