coZara
coZara

coZara

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.cozaraphilly.com/
  • Phone: 267-233-7488x
  • Hours of Operation:
    Lunch: Monday Through Friday 11:30-4pm

    Dinner: Monday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 10:00pm

    Friday & Saturday: 5:00pm - 11:00pm

    Sunday: 2:00pm - 8:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Yakitori, Japanese, Tapas / Small Plates
  • Executive Chef: Zama Tanaka
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Chef's Table, Counter Seating, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, Takeout, View, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Getting there

  • Cross Street: 33rd
  • Parking: No
A word from coZara
coZara is a true Japanese Izakaya, Japanese word for Gastro pub , small plates tapas style restaurant located in University City.
Continued
Foodspotting photos
See all photos
Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerMost Booked 1000-Point Tables
coZara reviews from OpenTable diners
50 reviews since May 20, 2014
Overall Rating3.9
  • Food4
    Service4.2
  • Ambiance3.8
    Noise LevelModerate
79% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
fit for foodies (33)good for groups (24)great for lunch (16)neighborhood gem (15)great for outdoor dining (14)late-night find (9)hot spot (6)special occasion (5)scenic view (5)romantic (4)vibrant bar scene (4)kid-friendly (4)notable wine list (2)Show More
  • Delicious Japanese small plates
    goodmetabolism
    Dined on 9/6/2014
    Reminds me of izakaya places in the East Village in NY. Delicious! Had the grilled whole squid, salmon, soft shell shrimp,pork gyoza, mushroom mazemen, strip steak yakitori. Highlights were the seafood and the mazemen.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • great addition
    rpf27VIP
    Dined on 8/28/2014
    CoZara is a great addition to the U-City neighborhood. In my opinion, this is one of the best lunch deals around.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for lunch, kid-friendly, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Wonderful
    nadiam4
    Dined on 8/23/2014
    Different and 100percent delicious! Small plates perfectly prepared making not only for a wonderful meal but also affordable. Hope they become succesful and this will be my Must go to when in Philly.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, late-night find
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • PaigeVIP
    Dined on 8/15/2014
    This meal was for a special occasion and the server Isaac made us feel so welcome. There was an incredible amount of variety in terms flavors and dishes offered which I loved!! Definitely recommend this place.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, late-night find, scenic view, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Unusual, but not a good way
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008VIP
    Dined on 8/15/2014
    The menu here doesn't do it any favors. With a lot of non-japanese ingredients (chimichurri, parmesan, lots of bacon), we were expecting much more Japanese fusion in style as well as in flavor. The reality was classic Japanese style with some unusual ingredients. Unfortunately with that style your execution has to be perfect, and it wasn't. The takowasa (a challenging dish for Americans in the best of preparations) had the unpleasant sliminess of improperly prepared octopus. The Chicken Kara-age was flavorful but lacked the crispiness I would have like. And the Gyoza somehow managed to lack any pork flavor. The soba sesame salad was quite tasty. I thought this restaurant had a lot of promise, but it disappointed in execution.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Great New Restaurant
    GreatVIP
    Dined on 8/13/2014
    Loved it. This place specializes in Japanese small plates. Between two of us we tried about 8 different dishes. Everything came out hot and delicious. Even the edimame, which is usually not noteworthy at most places was hot, extra salty and cooked perfectly. The panco scallop was awesome and the ribs were incredibly tender and tasty. The wine list was reasonably priced. After all that food and a bottle of wine, the check was still only barely over $100, which is quite reasonable in my opinion. Worth a try.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Wonderful!
    AKAJAN
    Dined on 8/3/2014
    Fantastic food, amazing variety, artful presentation, great service, friendly staff.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • once only
    ModerateFoodie
    Dined on 7/31/2014
    Went with a few friends and ordered as many different things as possible. Do not come here if you are looking for traditional japanese. Prices are high (sap that college crowd) and plates a japanese inspired. Service was nice, but not engaging. Come here for a taste experience with your friends- but eat something first.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great Food and Inexpensive
    MarcA
    Dined on 7/27/2014
    I tried coZara since the menu seemed interesting and I'd never heard of Japanese tapas before. Not only did it meet my (admittedly modest) expectations, but it far exceeded them. All of the 11 different dishes we tried were good to excellent. particularly the various fish items. The service was attentive and friendly, the advice to get the full prie fixe dinner excellent. For three of us, the food bill was under $75, and we left food over as we were all full. I would especially recommend the Albacore Poke, Soba Noodles and Edamame. Only step outside the Japan theme are the house special drinks, which use shucho, a Korean drink, as their base, both ladies at the table loved them.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, late-night find, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Excellent food
    2son
    Dined on 7/26/2014
    The mushroom filled won-ton in truffle-scented gravy were the most tasty things I've eaten in a long time. Next visit I'm only ordering them (x2, maybe) and beer. Some excellent selections on draft including a "rotating craft."
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Small Plates at Drexel Campus
    MicKEVIP
    Dined on 7/22/2014
    Went there for Univ City Dinning Days. Very generous and delicious selections. Service very friendly and helpful (Natalie). We enjoyed this so much we returned the next day with my parents for their $2.00 drinks and snacks happy hour menu. Another great new addition in the Phantastic Philly Dinning Scene.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, late-night find, scenic view, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great spot for a small group
    EPMP
    Dined on 7/22/2014
    We went for University Dining Days. Great value with 4 small dishes and dessert for 25 dollars. Competent, efficient servers but: we were there for 45 minutes before a single dish had arrived. And, it was very warm upstairs (we were seated indoors) Loved the Tuna Poke, mushroom wantons, scallops, salad. Our brussel sprouts never arrived but I couldn't finish my dinner anyway so I guess that didn't matter. We felt very welcome and will likely return.
    Special Features:
    good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Authentic Japanese food
    Monami
    Dined on 7/19/2014
    Enjoyed the authentic Ezakaya food (pub food). So glad we can have tasty and reasonably priced authentic Japanese food in the Philadelphia area.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for lunch, late-night find
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great new spot from Zama
    PTPeteVIP
    Dined on 7/14/2014
    Great Japanese inspired tapas menu! Every dish we had i would order again. Octopus 2 ways, shrimp with heads on, and a truffle crema noodle dish!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Nice addition
    MB3121
    Dined on 7/3/2014
    CoZara is a nice new addition to the Philly Restaurant scene. So many interesting plates to try.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • I hope they make it
    StephenVIP
    Dined on 6/28/2014
    The food was quite unusual. None of it was bad, it was just difficult to call it, "good". I'm a big fan of Japanese food, but this was very different. The seaweed salad was quite tasty in a very "fishy" sort of way. There was a chicken roll that was also good. The place was nearly empty, primarily due to their location on the border of the Penn/Drexel campuses and the fact that both schools are on summer break. I think with some adjustments in the menu that this could be a truly great find! The staff was WONDERFUL, knowledgeable, efficient and friendly. I'll try them again.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • akuba
    Dined on 6/19/2014
    My favorite dishes were the scallops and the mushroom wontons those were pretty amazing. Chicken yakitori was also extremely flavorful. The dumplings (pan seared) were also quite good, as well as the pork dish I had (Don't remember the name- it was in the bites section). Just was very impressed in general. Just an FYI, everything is really a small bite, despite having titles of starters, small bites, and bites. Got one of each of these categories for each person and were satisfied.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Food great but restaurant too warm!
    HotAirVIP
    Dined on 6/17/2014
    We were seated in front of the open kitchen on a 90 dégrée day. We left the restaurant and it felt cooler outside. Our waiter had sweat beads on his face. Perhaps it's cooler upstairs. The salmon and flank steak bento boxes were quite good. I wouldn't return on a warm day.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Fast service, tasty food
    FoodiegalVIP
    Dined on 6/15/2014
    Small Japanese tapas dishes that you don't find in every restaurant, therefore it makes it an unique restaurant. Service was friendly and fast. They have also second floor outdoor seating which is nice - even though it only overlooks Chestnut street and most of Drexel campus.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great food!!!
    phillyfoodie
    Dined on 6/14/2014
    We went there or dinner last night. The restaurant was hauntingly vacant at 9:30 in a Saturday night: it made us a little worried a to what to expect! But good lord, we were in for a surprise,and that so a rather great one! The food was outstanding! Everything- from the octopus, to the duck, to the scallops, to the salmon, to the lamb chops had their own distinct flavor and still were exceptional in there own might! Only minus was the lack of variety in desserts, but when you are in the University City, that is probably the last thing you should worry about! Will revisit soon...
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Terrific addition
    rpf27VIP
    Dined on 6/11/2014
    CoZara is a simply terrific addition to the neighborhood. I will be coming here often.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, scenic view
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • CoZara ----open for lunch!
    beskolnick
    Dined on 6/11/2014
    Excellent...met all of my expectations having been at the Testing kitchen (Audrey Claire's COOK---Philadelphia's Collaborative Kitchen) Tasting a while back. Will definitely go back for lunch and can not wait to try it out for a dinner in UCity.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, late-night find
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Positives & Negatives
    seeljrunVIP
    Dined on 6/1/2014
    When we arrived at 6:15, we were literally the first people in the place, which did not seem like a great sign. We sat on an upper deck that was outside, which was very nice as it was a beautiful day. Service was prompt and our food was delivered quickly - a positive or a negative depending upon the type of meal you want to have. As for the food, some of the tapas we ordered were very good, comparable to zama quality. Others were just okay. Also, the categories on the menu were misleading: some of the appetizers were bigger than the half-entree portions which we thought was a bit strange. Overall, I would say the meal was good; we would go back, as it is convenient to where we live.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Great new addition to Univ. city
    OpenTable Diner Since 2009VIP
    Dined on 5/28/2014
    Go to this restaurant for unique and different Japanese cuisine. Do not go here if you're expecting to eat sushi. Go to zama for that. Excellent food, great service and a wonderful atmosphere.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Good idea that needs seasoning
    ucityfacultymemberVIP
    Dined on 5/22/2014
    Nice to have a "small plates" style Japanese restaurant in the cheap/fast-food and bar-food oriented U. City area. Good lunch menu with attractive bento boxes at reasonable prices, in a pleasant and airy setting. Staff was friendly and prompt. However, the main ingredient, the food, was oversalted and undercooked -- both chicken and beef dishes we tried. Unless that is addressed, all the ambience won't bring us back soon.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Ratings-Only Reviews
    Based on 25 ratings-only reviews submitted since May 20, 2014
    • Overall Rating3.8
    • Food4
    • Ambiance3.7
    • Service3.9
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The following 4 reviews are from the coZara reviews archive.
  • Something about it..
    deekayVIP
    Dined on 5/17/2014
    Something about it coZara doesn't click. The food is good, but nothing was memorable. It's an izakaya themed restaurant, and the menu offers traditional Japanese izakaya dishes, as well as a few dishes with a western twist. At $7-8 a dish, I think it's a bit on the pricier side. The ambiance doesn't feel like an izakaya. It feels cold and without character. Maybe the second floor is different. Overall I give it 3.5 stars. I may try it again. I just wonder if the target demographics will work for coZara. I hope it does. I would love to see a couple of reasonably priced izakayas in Philly.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Outstanding Japanese Tapas!
    Nelson
    Dined on 4/30/2014
    Perfect rasberry, thyme cocktail Mushroom gyozas were great, perfect texture and savory sauce with a generous amount of mushrooms inside, so no flavor was lost. The salad was a very shareable size and the fresh, citrus notes in the dressing, from the yuzu, got better and better. We had 7 or 8 more dishes, and for the sake of readability, I'll limit it to our absolute favorites. The brussel sprouts...szechuan style...so much flavor...some perfect moments were enjoyed with this dish. ZFC...is crazy good...get it. We had one of their pork dishes, they have a few, I'm slightly embarrassed that I cannot remember the name of the dish, but it was as good as any pork dish I have ever had, anywhere. Overall, a great expereince. So, so good!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Mainly Izakaya
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011VIP
    Dined on 4/26/2014
    We first tried this place for its food only. We were definitely not disappointed with the quality, but they came out in such small portions at somewhat high prices. I understand that it's an izakaya, so it's primarily for drinking, but it's still a little pricier than I would have wanted. To be fair, I do want to give it a second chance now that I can get their drinks.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Finally
    LucyB
    Dined on 4/26/2014
    Great Japanese without the stereotypical stuff. Love this place
    Special Features:
    Fit For Foodies, Good for Groups, Great for Lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic