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  • Lena

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Lena Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.lena-annarbor.com
  • Email: lena@mission86.com
  • Phone: (734) 994-2773
  • Hours of Operation:

    Lunch: Monday - Friday: 11:00am - 4:00pm

    Dinner: Monday - Thursday: 4:00pm - 11:00pm, Friday & Saturday: 4:00pm - 12:00am, Sunday: 4:00pm - 10:00pm
    Brunch: Saturday - Sunday: 10:00am - 4:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: Latin American, Contemporary American, Fusion / Eclectic
  • Executive Chef: Gabriel Vera
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Fireplace, Full Bar, Late Night, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Private Room, Wheelchair Access, Wine
  • Private Party Contact: Manager (734) 994-2773

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Liberty
  • Parking: Street Parking
A word from Lena
A uniquely modern culinary experience inspired by the foods and traditions of Latin America and influenced by the flavors and techniques of American contemporary cuisine.
Our guests are served by professional, attentive and knowledgeable staff.
Foodspotting photos
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerFit for Foodies
  • Diners' Choice WinnerGood for Groups
  • Diners' Choice WinnerHot Spot
Diner Reviews
  • "The food was great and so was the service. My only complaint is the noise level"
    Dined on 4/11/2014
  • "good food, service good also and whiskey prices were good. Good place for $22 entrees and good booze service"
    Dined on 4/5/2014
    Dined on 3/19/2014
  • "This was my 3rd time eating at Lena, first time for dinner. Among four of us, I had the only positive food experience...a very nice plantain and beef soup. My other dish was terrible, as were the meals of my three friends. Although the restaurant was far from full when we were there, service was very slow. The weather was cold, and every time the door opened we were hit with a blast of cold air....the outer door was left open and it took 3 requests to get someone to close that door. Then after departing customers left it open again, it just stayed that way. We won't go back. This was very disappointing as my previous meals there a year ago and when It first opened were very good."
    Dined on 3/16/2014
  • "My husband ordered the blue crab burrito; I ordered the braised short ribs. He didn't like his meal, and I didn't like mine, so we switched. My "beef" with the short ribs was that they were very, very dry. Braised short ribs should not be dry. Braising in itself helps meat retain it's moisture, and the veal reduction sauce should have added even more moisture. I don't really think that the cut of meat was a short rib. The polenta on which the meet was served was delicious, but personally, I was disappointed. My hustand scarfed the meat down. We brought his dinner home for later. Portions are generous."
    Dined on 3/14/2014
  • "I enjoy Cuban food, so I was disappointed that Lena is really just a trendy restaurant with some Latin influence. It's a little too precious for its own good."
    Dined on 3/13/2014
  • "Went there for my anniversary. The food was amazing and the restaurant had a great atmosphere. We would definitely go again."
    Dined on 2/28/2014
  • "Good food and a suitable place for dinner with ones spouse, or a business dinner."
    Dined on 2/19/2014
  • "Lena was sold as casual dining with an executive chef meal experience. What we got instead were plastic chairs, a server who only checked on us three times and a crowd of loud, cursing teenagers celebrating a birthday. When they finally left, most of the people in the dining room started looking around, and someone said, "Hey, do you hear that?" and someone else from the other side of the restaurant said, "What, the quiet?" and everyone laughed. The staff did nothing to support the dining experience of their other patrons and let one table ruin the dining experience for the rest of us."
    Dined on 2/16/2014
  • "I made a reservation here on the recommendation of a friend. It was the perfect choice for us! My boyfriend loved the variety of choices. Our waiter was very knowledgeable and had the perfect recommendation for our appetizer. Couldn't have mean more happy with this choice. Perfect for valentine's day or any day of the year! Can't wait to go back and try even more of there diverse and delicious menu!"
    Dined on 2/14/2014
  • "We dine out with friends often prior to shows at the Ark, an iconic music venue in Ann Arbor. Truthfully we've been to most all the restaurantsin the four to six block area around downtown and many near campus. Lena is a new one for us and it will definitely be one we go to often in the future. It was definitely great food at a great price so a fantastic value. Excellent place."
    Dined on 2/14/2014
  • "This was my third time going to Lena, and it was excellent yet again. I would recommend going on an empty stomach since the portions are very large and can sometimes be rich. The price is, in my opinion, a little low for the quality of food and service. I always have fun there. It's an interesting interior design, and there's always an energetic vibe inside. However, it's quite loud, and it was a mistake to go on a Valentine's date there!"
    Dined on 2/14/2014
  • "Lena always has delicious food and specials. I am partial to their fish tacos. Great place to go!!"
    Dined on 2/12/2014
  • "Good food and service but overpriced. It's a good restaurant but not a spot to which I would eagerly return."
    Dined on 1/31/2014
  • "Lena provides a diverse menu with the highest quality food. The drinks are above average as well."
    Dined on 1/31/2014
  • "Another great meal at Lena! A varied menu with lots of good choices, all reasonably priced and nicely presented. Our server was competent and professional and made sure we were served in a timely manner as we had to be at Hill at 8:00. We'll be be back."
    Dined on 1/25/2014
  • "Had a reservation but was put into a table near the door even though there were booths open, we were super cold throughout dinner :( The house special appetizer, Ecuadorian Humitas, were absolutely fantastic - should have just eaten those for dinner!!! The house special entree, Beef Churrasco, left a lot to be desired. The chimichurri took a lot away from the dish and made the meat taste worse, not better. The rice was undercooked. Overall, I'd go here again, just stick to the wonderful Ecuadorian Humitas and the Braised Short Ribs - don't be fooled into thinking a house specialty will be prepared/taste wonderfully."
    Dined on 1/23/2014
  • "I ordered the beef and plantain soup and the Humitas. Both were amazing. I would definitely recommend Lena's to anybody that is a fan of innovative food."
    Dined on 1/23/2014
  • "Cool ambience and great location, but the food was just okay. I had the lobster roll which was 99% mayonnaise."
    Dined on 1/21/2014
  • "Messed up our order, food took very long to arrive. We were offered free drinks (coffee, tea, etc.) as compensation. Food was okay, not worth normal price (we went during restaurant week). It was much emptier in the restaurant than we would have expected."
    Dined on 1/14/2014
  • "The hostess maintained her cool with a crowded entryway of hungry patrons eager to be seated for their delayed reservation. Our server, Angie, was pleasant, accommodating, quick to serve our needs, gave great recommendations, and notably a great waitress, even more so at the end of restaurant week on a Friday night. When the dinner hour was ending, the hostess came around to check on our meal. Cafe Zola gave a truly wonderful meal with a great friend."
    Dined on 1/16/2014
  • "I was there for restaurant week and had the Ecuadorian Humitas which were amazing. Who knew corn cakes could be so wonderful. Texturally reminiscent of lasagna but with a spicy cuban flare. The Braised Veal shank was great especially the cripy brussel sprouts and the amazingly cooked fatty veal. And the Crispy Flan was a delightful ending. I'd recommend this to people wanting to expire their unique version of Cuban Fusion Flare. The Gin Mojito which I normally like missed the mark but they asked and took care of the problem (the vanilla clove is wonderful albeit a bit on the sweet side.)"
    Dined on 1/15/2014
  • "Upon requesting a small change to one dish's preparation, he suggested another meal entirely and customized it to fit my (pregnant) needs. It was DELICIOUS ... what a great spot!!"
    Dined on 1/17/2014
  • "I went with a group of seven, I recommend the flan, is delicious! I also recommend the cauliflower salad. Our server was really good and after dinner they let us into The bar Habana right away even though they had a long waiting line outside."
    Dined on 1/17/2014
  • "Food are well done and fine. Excellent service overall. The only negative is the drinks barely have any tequila in it."
    Dined on 1/16/2014
  • "The food was fantastic!! South American but not foreign. Delicious use of familiar ingredients. We had the Restaurant Week menu and I want to go back for more. The chairs are terrible and cold, but I think they are suppose to be "cool". The hostess would not let us have a booth, she was holding them for larger parties, but all night I saw booths with just two diners."
    Dined on 1/16/2014
  • "I've always had good meals at Lena but the menu for restaurant week was so yummy. Hats off to the chef!"
    Dined on 1/15/2014
  • "A group of four tried all the items on the restaurant week menu. The specialty drinks were excellent. Appetizers and main entrees were very good to excellent. The desserts were ok but didn't compare to the appetizers or main entrees. Our server was cordial and attentive. Over all a very nice dinner. I gave it a four out of five just because of the desserts. I will suggest it to friends."
    Dined on 1/15/2014
  • "My wife and I ate here during restaurant week, so the atmosphere was understandably more energetic. That said, the server was a little slow to get started, but she offered a valid explanation as to what was going on and once our food orders were taken everything was delivered in a timely manner. The restaurant week offerings that were not present on the regular menu were what I ordered and everything was very tasty. The highlight of the meal had to be the cocktails. I tried the sweet hot mojito and the otono vero (brand new drink with fig infused rum and pear syrup), and both exceeded expectations. The ambiance lends for a great weekend atmosphere, and I would certainly recommend it for that."
    Dined on 1/14/2014
  • "Lena is definitely a good restaurant. Their sweet potato gnocchi was so sweet and rich (in a good way) and their braised veal shank from the Restaurant Week menu was tender and flavorful. The desserts are also not bad. I can't say I was blown away, but I did enjoy my experiences there. On a marginal note: the layout of the restaurant and their utensils and plates and cups are all uniquely designed, and it was a nice touch to the feel of the place."
    Dined on 1/13/2014
  • "My experience at Lena was great! It was my first time and I went for restaurant week. Great food and the server was knowledgeable. My only complaint, and it is so minor that it is hardly a complaint, is that we were near the door and it was quite chilly all night."
    Dined on 1/14/2014
  • "The food is always a surprise to the taste. I love going here because I never know what to expect with their food pairing. It's definitely a good place to eat. Terrible for talking though. So bloody noisy. The hard surfaces bounces and magnifies people talking. The music is good though."
    Dined on 1/14/2014
  • "My friend and I had lunch at Lena during Restaurant Week, January 2014. The lunch offering was 2 sandwiches for $15, which was a good price. The pulled pork BBQ sandwich was tasty, but had very little meat. The frilled veggie sandwich (portabella, cheese, greens) was also tasty, but too greasy for me. I ordered a side salad, which was $7 and was really quite small. When we were there - Monday 11:30am-1:00pm - it was less than 1/3 filled and was relatively quiet. Booths were comfortable and service was fine."
    Dined on 1/13/2014
  • "Went here for lunch during restaurant week (2 for $25 - any sandwich). The food was delicious (I had the Cuban sandwich) and the waiter was attentive and friendly. The music in the restaurant was a little loud but did not interfere with conversation. We had a large group (11) and they accompanied us very nicely. Will definitely return to try other items on the menu!"
    Dined on 1/15/2014
  • "very creative menu with unusual but excellent handling of exotic vegetable dishes, such as the roasted cauliflower salad. The fish was done perfectly as was an eggplant entre. The Cuban sandwich was a gem, stuffed with pulled port, ham and vegetables, all for $14, and it was almost too big to eat in one sitting. We highly recommend Lena. This was our first time there, and we expect to go back to hit many of the other menu items that look fantastic."
    Dined on 1/13/2014
  • "We met friends for our first time at Lena.Our server was terrific, just the right amount of sincere attention.The chimichurri flatbread was my greatly anticipated appetizer, yet it came out barely warm...I didn't say anything. I ordered the turkey burger,which turned out to be unavailable due to a large crowd (it was 7:30 on a Saturday!) I was mystified why the kitchen would be out of such a simple ingredient - turkey shortage after the Holidays?Short Rib Mejado A+!At any rate, we really enjoyed our dinner there, we will return.It's so GREAT to have a creative menu, with fresh ingredients...and Very Polite front desk attendants? How terrific is that (& sadly unusual around Ann Arbor). The manager is paying attention - and we appreciate it!"
    Dined on 1/11/2014
  • "Lena was great - great addition to Main Street, Ann Arbor. The food was interesting and flavorful. The drink list was inventive and also very good. Service was lacking, our server seemed quite apathetic about our experience. However, the food came out promptly and as ordered. I would definitely recommend Lena - they also take reservation for less than six people which someone has become a stipulation at quite a few restaurants in Ann Arbor."
    Dined on 1/3/2014
  • "Our family group of five had pretty high expectations going in, and none of us were disappointed. Drinks and appetizers were great, and all of us loved our entree's. We had a variety of flavors, from three different types of tacos to a crab burrito to carne asada. They emphasize the quality of their ingredients here and it sure seemed to hold true. And the mixture of the supporting flavors was very good without being overpowering. Chef Gabriel stopped by and was fine with us taking our desserts (great flan!) downstairs to Cafe Habana so we could check it out (on a quiet Monday night). Lena is a real gem and we are looking forward to going back."
    Dined on 12/23/2013
  • "Our party of four had a lovely dinner, served by a waiter who was eager to answer all our questions, from "what is chimichurri?" to "what's gluten-free on this menu?" We got a bit of history and four beautiful plates of inventive, delicious food. Matteo was perfectly attentive, giving us space without hovering or interrupting but being quick to tend to us when we needed it."
    Dined on 12/7/2013
  • "We sampled a few of the appetizers and the Spanish Yapingacho was the winner! Calamari and tostones were very delicious as well. My friend enjoyed the Crab burrito special that night. Tip: The beef churrasco is a skirt steak that can be very tough and chewy...best is to order it rare to medium rare. The Seared Corvina is a fish filet that is like a swordfish, so it can be a little dry, but still was okay. This was a better experience than the last time I was there for dinner. Definitely going back!"
    Dined on 12/6/2013