Our Story

Doris Metropolitan is a steakhouse, but not the kind you are envisioning. While old school charm and tradition have their place, especially in New Orleans, we are less conventional because we believe at its core, fine dining should be unpredictable and unprecedented.

When partners Itai Ben Eli, Dori Rebi Chia and Itamar Levy traveled to the Big Easy a few years ago, the city's unmistakable energy drew them in. New Orleans has an appetite for adventure and new culinary experiences that the group could not help but admire. In 2013, Doris Metropolitan opened its doors in the heart of the city's iconic French Quarter serving expertly prepared dry aged beef and the highest quality meats. Our founders' Middle Eastern heritage is underscored in the carefully designed menu, which also features vegetable-forward appetizers, local seafood, an innovative caviar menu, and seasonal sides.

The team also owns and operates Doris Metropolitan in Costa Rica which was founded in 2010. Similar to New Orleans inception, a vacation turned into a love affair with a city and it's culture, vibe, and people, and thus, a restaurant was born.

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Who We Are


Itai Ben Eli is a partner of Doris Metropolitan, with locations in New Orleans and Santa Ana, Costa Rica. Ben Eli was born in northern Israel, and first discovered his appreciation of cooking growing up surrounded by Israeli cuisine and an abundance of local ingredients.  Itai and his partner, Doris Rebi Chia, together pioneered the dry-aging process in Israel and opened a butcher shop before setting their eyes on the restaurant business.  In 2010, Itai and Doris, along with partner Itamar Levy, opened their first upscale restaurant, Doris Metropolitan, in Costa Rica. Doris Metropolitan quickly became a destination for locals and visitors alike, and a staple for fine dining enthusiasts.  In an effort to even further diversify their business, Itai and his partners set their sights on a new business venture in the United States, focusing on the South. What was initially intended to be a restaurant in Miami quickly changed into a New Orleans restaurant, after the trio fell in love with the Big Easy's people, architecture and soul. Doris Metropolitan New Orleans opened its doors in the heart of the city's French Quarter in 2013, serving expertly prepared dry aged beef and the highest quality meats, implementing the flavors and techniques of the Middle East along the way.  Ben Eli leads and oversees the restaurant ambiance, with his passion for music he curates the ever-evolving playlists at Doris. His expertise in hospitality and front-of-house sets the tone of the unique and warm service experience the restaurants are known for.  As a wine and spirits enthusiast, Ben Eli is very involved with the restaurant's acclaimed beverage program along with Buck Williams (Wine director).


Dori Rebi Chia is a partner of Doris Metropolitan, with locations in New Orleans and Santa Ana, Costa Rica. Rebi Chia was born in a kibbutz in the northern part of Israel. After finishing his three years of military service in the Israeli Defense Forces, he went to explore India. Shortly after arriving to India, Rebi Chia opened his first restaurant there where he served Western driven food.In 2005, Rebi Chai returned to Israel to open a restaurant with partner Itai Ben Eli where the two pioneered an inventive and compelling concept focused around dry-aged beef. Three years later, with one more location in Tel Aviv and an efficient dry-aging facility, the restaurants were successfully sold. Seeking new markets together, Rebi Chai and Ben Eli along with partner Itamar Levy founded Doris Metropolitan's first restaurant in Santa Ana, Costa Rica. The restaurant's quick success led the partners to explore expansion. The partners turned their attention to the United States, fell in love with the lifestyle, culture and people of New Orleans, and decided to bring the warm service, proprietary dry-aged beef techniques, and unique ambience of Doris Metropolitan to the Big Easy.


Shachar (Sash) Kurgan is the Chef at Doris Metropolitan. Chef Sash was born in Israel and grew up in the Jerusalem area. After serving in the IDF in his early 20's, he started his culinary career. He explored several different kitchens across Israel. His passion for food led him to the acclaimed Tel Aviv restaurant "Herbert Samuel." Chef Sash worked his way from cook to butcher to sous chef at this top culinary institution. In 2012 Chef Sash joined the Doris Metropolitan family, as they looked to expand into the US market. His first step was mastering the beef program. Today Chef Sash is the culinary master mind behind the restaurant. His style is all about balance ? combining fresh ingredients, new and classic cooking styles, and layering different textures and flavors. 


Melissa Rogers is the General Manager of Doris Metropolitan, joining the team May of 2015.  A  New Jersey native, she came to New Orleans to attend Tulane University.  While running, the host stand at the classic Creole destination Arnaud's in 2006 she realized an affinity for service.  Melissa eschewed a master's degree in accounting after discovering her passion for service.  After Tulane in 2010, Melissa was looking for new opportunities which she found in the Polo Lounge at the Windsor Court Hotel. After fostering a relationship with the Food and Beverage Director Skip Adams he encouraged her desire to curate an experience as a career. She began managing the floor of the Grill Room at the Windsor Court Hotel working closely with the Director of Outlets and Sommelier, Sara Kavanaugh who became her mentor.  She helped the team gain the Wine Spectator Best of Awards of Excellence. From there her passion for wine and spirits began to take shape.  In 2013 she was promoted to Assistant Sommelier. Through her pursuit of wine knowledge, she developed a love of educating others. She began her journey to Sommelier with the Court of Master Sommeliers.  A year after completing the Certified Sommelier Exam, she wanted to explore a new restaurant environment.  The perfect opportunity presented itself when she ran into the Doris Metropolitan Wine Director, Buck Williams at a portfolio tasting.


Buck Williams is the Wine Director at Doris Metropolitan in New Orleans, and has been in the wine industry for over 10 years. After graduating from Wake Forest University, where he attended with the prestigious Arnold Palmer Golf Scholarship, Buck enjoyed a brief career in professional golf. He began collecting wine at age 25, and became an avid student of all things wine, by studying reviews, tasting as much as possible, dining with collectors, and speaking with owners of wine shops. Buck moved to New Orleans in 2011 with the intention of getting into the wine industry on a professional level, and began working with a small fine wine wholesaler. In the fall of 2013, Buck knocked on the door of under-construction, soon-to-open Doris Metropolitan and met one of the restaurant's partners, Itai Ben Eli. Itai and Buck began working together shortly after, Buck was brought on to the Doris Metropolitan team to train the staff on its wine offerings and help expand its portfolio. Over the course of 3 years, Buck has helped Doris Metropolitan build an exceptional wine program, with over $200,000 in inventory and over 700 bottles to choose from, elevating the restaurant to become one of the top fine wine destinations in New Orleans.