coZara

4.3
232 reviews
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$31 to $50
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Japanese
coZara is a true Japanese Izakaya, Japanese word for Gastro pub , small plates tapas style restaurant located in University City.
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Sun 5:00PM - 9:00PM
Mon - Fri 5:00PM - 6:15PM 8:45PM - 10:00PM
Sat 5:00PM - 10:00PM

What 232 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.3based on recent ratings
4.3
food
4.4
service
4.4
ambience
4.1
value
Noise · Moderate
89% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
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RB
Central Coast
5 reviews
Dined on April 19, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

The restaurant and meal was fine for a forward approach to traditional meals. As for traditional touch it was a bit off in flavor and how it was put together. Presentation was good.

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H
Philadelphia
28 reviews
Dined on April 13, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 3ambience 2

The moment we walked in I was greeted with unwelcome statement “closing in 5 minutes”. I had chosen the 8:30 PM slot from open table, thinking it is Saturday night and it should be open at least till 10 PM.

I do not like sitting in those high chairs for dinner. But the waitress said that is all she can give me and walked away.

The potstickers were dry and totally tasteless.

Finally the sushi. Please don’t eat sushi here. The rice used to make the sushi was undercooked and dry. If the rice is not well cooked, regardless of what you do with the fish, the sushi will taste disgusting.

Me and my wife scored the sushi at “3”.

There was a young man, who was quite gracious. He sensed our unhappiness and offered some free mochi.

Never going there again.

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MK
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on April 12, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

The food was very good, although the presentation of the curry dish was not as inviting as I would have liked, however, the taste was good.

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DS
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on April 5, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 3ambience 3

Cool spot but the food was not very good.

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IT
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on March 30, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

The wings that I ordered tonight were probably the best wings I’ve ever had in my life. Order the wings! Overall, great first experience and will be back.

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T
Philadelphia
62 reviews
Dined on March 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The server was very attentive and the food was quite tasty!

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PF
Philadelphia
9 reviews
Dined on March 15, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

The food was the best part of CoZara. It is a casual place frequented by Penn students, but the fish is incredibly fresh and well presented. It’s a good option for dinner within walking distance to 30th Street Station

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JD
Philadelphia
6 reviews
Dined on March 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

a little pricy for lunch. very tasty.

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KO
Philadelphia
2 reviews
Dined on March 1, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 5ambience 4

Great service. The food was quite average though.

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OT
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on February 16, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 5

Food was delicious. Sushi chef was inundated with orders so food came out slowly. But the server was gracious and took a beer off our bill. Overall positive.

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LD
1 review
Dined on January 30, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

The food was very good and the staff friendly and attentive. Overall, good food for a good price in a nice, relaxed setting.

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MC
St. Louis
1 review
Dined on January 26, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

One of my favorite sushi places in the area. Had wonderful, friendly service from Claudia, and Andrew is the consummate manager and host. Truly a great place.

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TI
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on January 20, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 3

Great food, great ambiance, great service. we had a bit of trouble with strong air blowing out of a fan. The manager explained it could to be addressed because it is out of their control. He moved u to a better table. So, great service.

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k
1 review
Dined on January 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I liked how their ramen came in two sizes (small and regular). The broth for seafood ramen was good. Happy hour deals were great.

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g
Philadelphia
3 reviews
Dined on January 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

It's now my favorite restaurant! Went for my husband's birthday and had a marvelous time.

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OT
Philadelphia
5 reviews
Dined on December 1, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 3ambience 4

It was ok... Nothing special... Sushi is expensive for what they have...

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B
Miami
3 reviews
Dined on October 26, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great Sushi. Reasonably priced, excellent service. Will be back!

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P
Philadelphia
32 reviews
Dined on October 26, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing as always! Andrew the manager and servers Crystal and Claudia were wonderful!! The food is always incredible.

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E
1 review
Dined on October 21, 2018
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 1

Restaurant was no open when I put in a reservation. Open table is at fault for not notifying it’s customer, not CoZara.

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AK
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on October 21, 2018
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 1

They weren’t even open when I went to my reservation.

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G
Philadelphia
43 reviews
Dined on October 20, 2018
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 3

The sushi was quality and rolled very well. The specialty rolls were ok but not very inventive. Overall a good meal but not one I have to have again.

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OT
Philadelphia
3 reviews
Dined on September 6, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Loved it! The seafood ramen is amazing and so is the shrimp tempura roll!

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MA
Philadelphia
51 reviews
Dined on August 23, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

We loved CoZara when the head chef Phila was there. We haven’t been back since he has moved on, due to a busy summer. However, we were thrilled to go back and see how things were. We were slightly underwhelmed with the new head chef and the overall menu. Portions got smaller and the prices got higher. But the sushi is excellent! So all is not lost. They did get another sushi chef, Robin, who we knew from a previous sushi place. It was such a great surprise to see him at CoZara! He is a gem and we will be returning for the sushi! Overall, we will be back for the sushi and hopefully to see some more items on the hot menu.

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RJ
Philadelphia
2 reviews
Dined on July 31, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The chefs have proven themselves as true artists, from taste to delivery.

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p
Philadelphia
5 reviews
Dined on July 13, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 3

Went for restaurant week. Not crowded. Food was very good. Because schools were empty to do summer break, parking on the street - not free - was available.

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L
Philadelphia
3 reviews
Dined on June 30, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 4

We ordered the shashimi and spicy chirashi bowl. The shashimi was good for $29 and I would recommend getting that. The chirashi bowl was good as well; the rice was an interesting orange color and flavourable but not too spicy. However, the cuts of fish in the bowl were reminiscent of those found in a poke bowl. I felt that for the price, there should have been better cuts. Otherwise, we were content with the food and the service, and I would go back to try something else on their menu.

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OT
Philadelphia
7 reviews
Dined on June 29, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 3ambience 3

I had the $35 tasting menu, which consisted for four courses. I personally think it is extremely overpriced, because the ramen was lackluster. The first course consisted of the seaweed salad that was too acidic, three pieces of sashimi (the fish was good), and salmon skin tacos that were okay (could use more salmon roe/jalapenos). For the second course I had yakitori (fried scallops, chicken thighs, and NY strip). The NY strip and the chicken thighs were great, but the fried scallops weren't exactly what I would consider yakitori, since it was deep fried. The third course was a choice of ramen. I had the seafood ramen, which was extremely disappointing. The both lacked flavor, and I could barely eat it. Moreover, the egg was not soft boiled (it needed atleast 2 more minutes), and wasn't flavorful. The final course was a choice of mochi, that I think was store-bough/imported and was good. The service was okay. I don't think I'd be returning here again, because this place isn't as good as Dana, even though it is affiliated to it.

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C
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on June 22, 2018
Overall 1food 2service 1ambience 1

I have no idea how CoZara has gotten good reviews; it is a college bar with a sushi counter attached. The staff was more interested in flirting with eachother than with doing their jobs.

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JS
San Francisco
24 reviews
Dined on June 19, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Nice fresh sushi

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JB
1 review
Dined on June 13, 2018
Overall 3food 4service 4ambience 3

I was looking for a nice restaurant for a business dinner that is convenient to the newish hotel Study, in University City. CoZara is right across the street and the reviews were good, so we gave it a try. We had mostly starters that we could share easily. Food was quite good, and service very friendly, but it was not really what I was looking for since it was a business dinner. This is more of a neighborhood joint. No real complaints, but I would not go there again for this purpose.

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MA
Philadelphia
51 reviews
Dined on June 8, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We went to celebrate my husbands birthday! The food, as usual, was awesome. And our service was also fantastic. Looking forward to going back!

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YE
Philadelphia
16 reviews
Dined on June 2, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

It was my husband’s birthday dinner. Unfortunately they have a very strict policy on outside desserts yet they do not have a small cake to serve a group. We were 8 people and would have had to pay 3.00 per person “cutting/plate” fee. This would have been 24.00 additional dollars which is more than the little cake I brought in. It was a nonnegotiable policy and unfortunate. The manager said they have their own desserts but nothing was a cake. At the end of our meal it took a while to get our server back to ask for one dessert just to sing happy birthday. We now were in a rush to get to the dance show.We got one of their most popular ice cream type desserts with a candle which sufficed but was disappointing. I brought this cake from the suburbs into the city to have at dinner before my daughter’s dance performance at Drexel. We never cut it that night. Everyone was a little disappointed we couldn’t enjoy it at the restaurant. The service was overall good, as was the food and ambiance but we left feeling disappointed.

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AL
Birmingham
7 reviews
Dined on May 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This is my "go to" for really good Japanese food at a reasonable price. They have an extensive menu. It's a fun casual atmosphere with friendly service!

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TL
Philadelphia
5 reviews
Dined on May 24, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 5ambience 4

Our sushi was very nice--but the salmon teriyaki used fish that was not fresh.

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J
Philadelphia
12 reviews
Dined on May 13, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 3

We celebrated Mother’s Day at CoZara. The food was really good! Fish was very fresh, the edamame was extremely good, the truffle roasted brussel sprouts were outstanding!!! Really good meal and fun time!!!

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MM
Philadelphia
9 reviews
Dined on May 8, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Excellent special rolls, good sushi, nice atmosphere- ate upstairs and it was a little less noisy. Would definitely come again!

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on May 7, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 5ambience 2

Mediocre sushi

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M
Philadelphia
4 reviews
Dined on April 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fantastic variety of outstanding dishes. Great service and high quality.

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TB
Philadelphia
4 reviews
Dined on April 21, 2018
Overall 1food 1service 2ambience 5

One of our friends is gluten free. The server went through what menu items she could have. We ordered, and a few minutes went by and the server came back upstairs to inform us that none of what my friend ordered was gluten free, even after she told us it was, and pretty much all she could eat was vegetable sides. (Note: I, as a vegetarian, ordered all sides since there wasn't a vegetarian main dish, but I didn't want to make a big deal out of it). Disappointed, we paid for our drinks and left.

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TS
Philadelphia
122 reviews
Dined on April 20, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 4

Downstairs, expect to sit at a high-top table. As that's not my preference, I was greatly relieved to be led upstairs (a fair number of stairs--good glute workout for those who work there, I'm sure!) and sat at a small two-top overlooking the fun artwork in the stairwell. If it had been a little warmer, we might've requested seating on the second-floor balcony, which is protected on three sides and overlooks Chestnut Street. I imagine it's a fun spot to people watch on nice days.

We did a mixture of smaller dishes with the Duck Bao Bun (1 to an order) coming out on top: full of duck, with a nice hoisin-based sauce (though I would have it a bit thicker). Our second favorite was the Red Dragon Roll, which was a spicy tuna avocado maki topped with tuna, crispy shallots, and sweet chili eel sauce--very nice flavors. The fried, Pork Gyoza were extra crispy and worked well with the dipping sauce. Both the Spider Roll and the Sukiyaki Spring Rolls were fine, but not exceptional--I appreciated that I could taste the sukiyaki in the roll, but am used to a fuller sukiyaki flavor.

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