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Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.15mi
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  3. Distance: 0.20mi
  4. Distance: 0.23mi
  1. Distance: 0.15mi
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About Zen Box Izakaya

A Ramen-centric Izakaya owned by Chef & Wife in Downtown Minneapolis' Mill District.

We are devoted to the pleasures of Craft Ramen & Japanese comfort food.
Zen Box Izakaya is THE place for ‘Good Food, Good Drinks and Good Company’.
Established since 2011.

602 Washington Ave. S.
Minneapolis, MN 55415
View Larger Map

Dining Style:
Casual Dining

Cuisines:
Japanese, Tapas / Small Plates, Comfort Food

Hours of Operation:

Lunch: Monday - Friday: 11:30am - 2:00pm.
Dinner: Monday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 10:00pm, Friday - Saturday: 5:00pm - 12:00am.

Cross Street:
Portland Ave

Dress Code:
Casual Dress

Price Range:
$30 and under

Payment Options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(612) 332-3936

Website:
http://www.zenbox.com/

Parking Details:
Street Parking: You can find metered parking along Washington & Portland all of the meters are $1.00 per hour, payable with Credit Cards. Meters are free after 10:00pm daily. Let us know if you need change.

Ramp Parking: There are several parking ramps and surface parking lot nearby which range in price from $1.50 on evenings & weekends to $4/first hour on weekdays.

Public Transit:
Metro Transit Lightrail: Metrodome Station.
Metro Transit Bus No. 7 & 22

Executive Chef:
John Ng

Private Party Facilities:
Available for groups up to 25-50.

We can host sit-down dinners, buffet-style meals, or cocktail hour.

We have unique seating options, atmosphere and privacy levels, whether your event is birthday party, business meeting, holiday party or corporate functions.

The choice is up to you!

Private Party Contact:
General Manager: (612) 332-3936

Additional:
Banquet, Bar Dining, Beer, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Late Night, Outdoor dining, Private Room, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Zen Box Izakaya Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.6

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.6

service

4.5

ambience

4.3

value

4.4

noise

Moderate

98% would recommend it to a friend

Casual (40)
Fit for Foodies (40)
Fun (36)
See All
Good for a Date (36)
Creative Cuisine (34)
Authentic (34)
Happy Hour (31)
Neighborhood Gem (27)
Comfort Food (26)
Pre/post Theatre (25)
Great for Lunch (24)
Good Vegetarian Options (23)
Hot Spot (22)
Good for Groups (18)
Worth the Drive (17)
Bar Seating (17)
Good for Birthdays (16)
Business Meals (15)
Quick Bite (15)
Tapas (14)
Spicy (13)
Healthy (13)
Cozy (13)
Family Style (12)
Open Kitchen (12)
Late-night Find (11)
Modern Decor (11)
Special Occasion (10)
People Watching (10)
Kid-friendly (10)
Vibrant Bar Scene (9)
Handcrafted Cocktails (9)
Outstanding Value (9)
Great Beer (8)
Good for Anniversaries (8)
Gluten Free Options (7)
Romantic (6)
Vegan (6)
Sunday Lunch (6)
Private Room (6)
Great for Outdoor Dining (6)
Tasting Menu (5)
Local Ingredients (4)
Great for Brunch (4)
Organic (4)
Scenic View (4)
Afternoon Tea (3)
Disabled Access (2)
Paleo Friendly (2)
Notable Wine List (2)
Seasonal (2)
Quiet Conversation (2)
Afternoon Coffee (1)
Sort By:
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228 reviews
Loading Reviews ...

 
 (Minneapolis)·Dined 5 days ago

I love this place! Every time we go, the service is stellar, the food is amazing, and the owners are very kind.

Tags: Casual, Neighborhood Gem, Vegan, Creative Cuisine, Authentic, Good Vegetarian Options, Local Ingredients, Good for Groups, Fun, Handcrafted Cocktails, Fit for Foodies, Seasonal
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Minneapolis)·Dined 5 days ago

Fresh and delicious food very helpful and friendly staff. Wonderful atmosphere My husband and I had a wonderful date night.

Tags: Good for Birthdays, Authentic, Quick Bite, Romantic, Handcrafted Cocktails, Great for Lunch, Tapas, Happy Hour, Good for Groups, Late-night Find, Special Occasion, Fun, Sunday Lunch, Neighborhood Gem, Good Vegetarian Options, Comfort Food, Great for Brunch, Kid-friendly, Afternoon Tea, Vibrant Bar Scene, Organic, Cozy, Hot Spot, Bar Seating, Worth the Drive, Gluten Free Options, Good for Anniversaries, Spicy, Casual, Vegan, Healthy, Great for Outdoor Dining, Disabled Access, Creative Cuisine, Pre/post Theatre
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Minneapolis)·Dined 6 days ago

My favorite place to grab some ramen on a rainy day

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5

 
 (Minneapolis)·Dined 6 days ago

The food was ok in my opinion. I eat a lot of authentic Asian cuisine both at home and outside. The ramen lacked broth and felt more like a stir fry, the highlight would be the squid balls, other than that I felt it catered more to Midwest taste than actual authentic Japanese taste. The ambiance was loud and packed tight so not best or most quiet date spot. The servers were wonderful. They were fast, polite, and attentive.

Tags: Tapas, Pre/post Theatre, Happy Hour
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience3
service5
value2

 
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on May 13, 2017

Excellent! Great variety of dishes.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5

 
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on May 6, 2017

Fun place to have a tasty and cozy dining experience.

Tags: Good for a Date, Casual, Fit for Foodies, Good for Groups, Creative Cuisine, Comfort Food, Cozy, Happy Hour, Neighborhood Gem
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service4
value5

 
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on May 4, 2017

My favorite place. The food is amazing, servers friendly and efficient and just a great experience every time. The owners are gracious and you can tell how much they care. Can't recommend more highly.

Tags: Great for Lunch, Good Vegetarian Options, Fit for Foodies
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on May 3, 2017

Awesome food. Bad service.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience3
service1

 
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on May 2, 2017

Local fave. I don't know that much about Japanese cooking, but this seems fairly authentic to me. Awesome for before the Guthrie. Great veggie sharable small plates: broccoli, sprouts, sweet potato, seaweed salad, tofu. Excellent fried gyoza. Also some decadent stuff like short ribs, pork belly, tempura avocado, fried chicken. Pretty good ramen. Very good udon noodles.

Tags: Good for a Date, Authentic, Hot Spot, Quiet Conversation, People Watching, Bar Seating, Vibrant Bar Scene, Good Vegetarian Options, Neighborhood Gem, Great for Lunch, Healthy, Paleo Friendly, Gluten Free Options, Casual, Private Room, Pre/post Theatre, Fun, Happy Hour, Spicy, Fit for Foodies
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service4
value5

vip
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on May 1, 2017

I don't get the rave reviews. Food is salty and bland. The wait staff all stand by the hot lights of the kitchen staring at the diners. Odd experience. Cocktails were expensive and watered down. Won't be back.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food2
ambience2
service2
value2

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on April 28, 2017

Excellent food...delicious sushi, awesome wings. Super friendly staff. Great location. We'll definitely be going back.

Tags: Casual, Healthy, Neighborhood Gem
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on April 28, 2017

Good food healthy yet yummy.
Noisy but fun.
All servers were smiling and very helpful

Tags: Good for a Date, Organic, Creative Cuisine, Scenic View, Afternoon Coffee, Vegan, Casual
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience3
service5
value3

 
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on April 25, 2017

Been here many times. Consistently great all around.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Comfort Food, Creative Cuisine, Vibrant Bar Scene
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on April 23, 2017

Amazing! Sharing restaurants are fun and sharing Japanese food is double fun! Go!
There were about 10 more things we wanted to try but we were only 3 people, so I guess we will just have to go back!:)

Tags: Good for a Date, Authentic, Tasting Menu, Fit for Foodies, Family Style, Comfort Food, Creative Cuisine, Fun
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on April 21, 2017

Zenbox is perfect for a taste of Japanese food that you grew up with but are too lazy to make for yourself. The food is prepared nicely, service is great, good location near the Guthrie and just yummy in general. I pretty much stick to the same stuff every time - pickles, seaweed said and kimchi ramen - other people have ordered other items and it all tastes good. Nice beer selection.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Fun, Happy Hour, Casual, Comfort Food, Creative Cuisine, Great for Lunch, Pre/post Theatre, Business Meals, Great Beer
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on April 19, 2017

The food was pretty good here but overall was very expensive. A single bowl of ramen was $14 yet you felt very empty after consuming the bowl. My bill ended up being $60 yet me and my colleague both felt like we needed about twice as much food. The table next to us had a similar complaint. The bar is pretty good but wouldn't recommend eating here unless it is just for a small bite. Lunch would probably be a better value but dinner was less than satisfactory

Tags: Happy Hour, Tapas
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience3
service2
value2

 
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on April 19, 2017

Great lunch!

Tags: Bar Seating, Business Meals, Casual
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on April 17, 2017

Perfection.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Las Vegas)·Dined on April 16, 2017

Great niche place serving up a variety of traditional and creative dishes self branded as Japanese comfort food. Apparently was a skyway hot spot for a long time and then moved to street level about four years back and has enjoyed a lot of success. Great place for people to share plates and experience both known and new food. Service and eats were excellent. Ambience was lively. Location was good. Definitely recommend! Looking forward to returning very soon.

Tags: Creative Cuisine, People Watching, Modern Decor, Worth the Drive, Hot Spot, Good for Birthdays, Fit for Foodies, Authentic, Comfort Food, Casual, Good for a Date, Fun
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on April 15, 2017

Best place to get Udon and Ramen in Twin Cities. I love their selection of small dishes you can enjoy with either cold beer or hot sake. Happy hour is nice. Make sure you try those that are labeled "Must Try" I have not been disappointed so far. Ensure to make a reservation for weekend dinner time. Bar seating fills up fast.

Tags: Authentic, Open Kitchen, Neighborhood Gem, Quick Bite, Happy Hour, Spicy
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service4
value5

 
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on April 13, 2017

We loved the place! Great menu and staff! It was a great people-watching place...

Tags: Local Ingredients, Open Kitchen, Authentic, People Watching, Creative Cuisine
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on April 13, 2017

Read many good things about this restaurant and it lived up to expectations. I would certainly return!

Tags: Great for Lunch, Good for a Date, Business Meals, Open Kitchen
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience3
service3
value4

 
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on April 8, 2017

Wait staff gave us excellent recommendations. We shared three appetizers (4 people) and each had our own tonkotsu. food was absolutely delicious. We left feeling stuffed because the portions were huge. I am glad we had reservations because it was crowded!

Tags: Casual, Neighborhood Gem, Fit for Foodies, Authentic, Healthy
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on April 8, 2017

Every time we go, our experience is as good or better than the last. Thanks again!

Tags: Scenic View, Good for Anniversaries, Fun, Fit for Foodies, Bar Seating, Good for a Date, Comfort Food
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service4
value5

 
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on April 7, 2017

Absolutely delightful, it has improved almost in every way since the last time I was there, Its a new favorite for me, love the quirky japanes decoration and their cuisine.

Noteworthy is the mochi and their hitachino.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on April 5, 2017

Great food. I can't get there enough. You can't go wrong with the ramen, and the bento boxes are excellent.

Tags: Pre/post Theatre, Creative Cuisine, Great for Lunch, Casual, Business Meals, Fun, Open Kitchen, Great Beer, Authentic, Happy Hour, Spicy, Worth the Drive, Good for a Date, Bar Seating
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on April 2, 2017

Enjoyed a fun dinner with friends at Zen Box. The Hamachi special was fabulous. Loved the two kinds of ramen we ordered - Kimchee and Tantanmen? Lots of delicious flavors. Also enjoyed the black sesame and mango mochi to finish the meal. Thanks!

Tags: Comfort Food
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service4
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on March 28, 2017

Service was a bit slow to start with to take our drink oder and then our food order.

Tags: Pre/post Theatre, Authentic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service3
value4

vip
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on March 23, 2017

Food is excellent. Service is always friendly and generally fast. This is one of our go to restaurants in the neighborhood. Lots of veggie choices.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience3
service5

vip
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on March 22, 2017

The salad dressing was spicy and the menu didn't say spicy. I ate because I didn't want to waste food.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food1
ambience3
service2
value3

 
 (Seattle)·Dined on March 18, 2017

Had a great meal of shared plates with wonderful friends. The service was excellent.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5

 
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on March 18, 2017

Great traditional Japanese cuisine. I got the ramen bowl while my sister-in-laws got lots of little plates and shared. Everything was super tasty. This was my second time and I will go back again. Love Zen Box. The only thing that could have made it better was a "cheat sheet" with translations of what everything means on the menu. They had descriptions but it would have been nice to know what all the menu items meant.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Happy Hour, Private Room
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience3
service4
value3

 
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on March 17, 2017

Great spot! Hard not to get the ramen when here, but they've also got good gyoza, seaweed salad, poke, sashimi, etc. Fun and vibrant, welcoming and modern. We enjoyed truly great service, and will keep going back!

Tags: Kid-friendly, Fun, Pre/post Theatre, Casual, Creative Cuisine
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience3
service5
value3

 
 (Las Vegas)·Dined on March 12, 2017

Awesome place. Great food and service was amazing. Friendly.

Tags: Good for Groups, Family Style, Fun, Quick Bite, Kid-friendly, Comfort Food, Neighborhood Gem, Hot Spot, Business Meals, Happy Hour, Worth the Drive, Great Beer, Outstanding Value, Great for Lunch, Late-night Find, Casual, Open Kitchen, Authentic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on March 11, 2017

We really enjoyed the ramen here and the service was excellent. We look forward to returning!

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Happy Hour, Bar Seating, Fun, Late-night Find, Kid-friendly, Casual, People Watching, Open Kitchen, Outstanding Value, Modern Decor, Hot Spot, Good Vegetarian Options, Healthy, Vibrant Bar Scene, Handcrafted Cocktails
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (New Orleans)·Dined on March 11, 2017

We were tucked away in a back room without windows or decor. There were other patrons but the ambiance in the main dining room looked better. Food was great and staff friendly.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience3
service3
value4

vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on March 11, 2017

Fabulous! Really great food and service

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on March 10, 2017

Food tastes good, good recommendations by staff for what to try according to your taste preferences, good atmosphere and lightning, clean, enjoyed it very much!

Tags: Quick Bite, Tasting Menu, Fun, Family Style, Kid-friendly, Casual, Good for Birthdays, Healthy, Good for Anniversaries, Fit for Foodies, Good for Groups, Cozy, Great for Lunch, Worth the Drive, Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service4
value4

 
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on March 6, 2017

Delicious ramen noodles and broth. Warm and cozy place; ideal for a cold and wet day. One of my favorite places.

Tags: Comfort Food, Great for Lunch, Authentic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on March 2, 2017

We are frequent visitors to Zen Box Izakaya and fave always find it to be a friendly.
Zen Box is a great establishment and we Highly recommend you stop in for a tasty bite.

Tags: Quick Bite, Organic, Good for a Date, Late-night Find, Good for Groups, Fit for Foodies, Great for Lunch, Happy Hour
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

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