Kona Grill - Sarasota

3.9
505 reviews
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$30 and under
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Contemporary American
Welcome to Kona Grill Sarasota at the Mall at University Town Center. Enjoy your local paradise after a day of shopping or family meal complete with kid’s bento boxes. Fresh, wild caught fish is flown in daily to craft award-winning sushi, while contemporary American entrees are prepared from scratch in-house. Relax on the shaded patio and enjoy one of the best happy hours in Sarasota. And don’t leave until you’ve tried one of the handcrafted cocktails, ice cold draft beer, or a glass of wine selected from the extensive drink menu. The restaurant’s diverse menu and contemporary ambience provide the perfect venue for special occasions like bridal showers, baby showers, birthday celebrations, business meetings, date night, or just any occasion really.
What 505 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
3.9based on recent ratings
4.0
food
3.8
service
3.8
ambience
3.8
value
Noise · Moderate
77% of people would recommend it to a friend
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BR
Tampa
7 reviews
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Awesome place for sushi !!!! We frequently visit Kona and the food and service is great!

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D
1 review
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

It was not horrible but prob would not return. Service slow waitress was very nice. Acknowledged us but was not able to take our drink order for about 10 mins. But she did walk by about 3 times and. Said she would be right with us.

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LK
1 review
Dined on May 10, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 1

Worst dining experience ever. Understaffed (and restaurant not full). I even requested in the comments when making the reservation to have a good server as the last 2 experiences were poor. Comments not acknowledged but we were blessed with sweet Zach as our server. Nothing was his fault. He was so professionally mature and tried to make it a good experience. After speaking to the manager twice about consistent poor service, and why they seem to frequently be understaffed, he encouraged us to give it another chance. I would have until the worst experience any diner with food restrictions could imagine ... meat in a salad when no meat was clearly requested. Been a strict vegetarian for 15 years, no fish. No meat. When I questioned a small little something, the manager told me it was the cabbage. It was very dark in there and he promised me over and over he watched it being made and there was absolutely no chicken, bacon, or egg. A few minutes later I found a chunk of chicken and almost immediately was sick just be the sight of it in my food. Called him over and he obviously couldn't deny it was chicken. We had to leave immediately. Will never go back to this location. Ever.

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HE
1 review
Dined on April 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent dining experience. Enjoyed the food. Server (Makala) was personable, courtious and
an excellent server.

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DF
Tampa
45 reviews
Dined on April 28, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 3

Service was slow for the number of tables. Seem to be understaffed
Food was good.

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M
Chicago
7 reviews
Dined on April 27, 2019
Overall 4food 2service 5ambience 4

Service was excellent!
Food left something to be desired. The salmon herb salad was very good and the dressing honey mustard was delicious. However the basil pesto linguine seasoning was hot, hot, Hot with red pepper flakes or jalapeño added it seemed. You could not taste the pesto at all. It was inedible and there was no warning in the menu whatsoever of the degree of heat in the seasoning. We had to send the dish back to the kitchen and order something else. To add- we like spicy tastes- but this was way over the top!

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JD
Miami
2 reviews
Dined on April 26, 2019
Overall 1food 2service 1ambience 3

Place is a total mess... haven’t seen that many uncomfortable violations in on place like that ever

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C
Naples
3 reviews
Dined on April 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Very good food, sushi, great ambiance and service, plus you get to sit outside during winter!

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AH
1 review
Dined on April 6, 2019
Overall 4food 2service 5ambience 2

Well it started well. Good appetizers.... Dinner left lots to be desired... And dessert was good. They need some work with the line cooks.

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DM
1 review
Dined on April 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Good menu, everyone in our party was happy with their food. Best salmon I have ever had! Friendly service

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PB
1 review
Dined on March 30, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We were pleasently greeted and sat immediately, Our server was quickly at our table, asking for beverage orders. Very persoanable and friendly. Our drinks were brought out in a timely fashion, as was our food. Everything was quite good. Could not have asked for a better server. Thank you so much for a great experience.

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KR
Tampa
4 reviews
Dined on March 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Family Get Together

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SD
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on March 29, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Happy hour menu is fabulous. Drinks are reasonably priced. Fun place. The shrimp flatbread is really great.

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RB
1 review
Dined on March 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food was good, the waitperson exceptional, the restaurant location ideal, parking close and a available, the pricing was reasonable.

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R
New England
6 reviews
Dined on March 20, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Had only been to lunch at Kona Grill twice. Dinner with friends was just as good as lunch. Service was amazing. We weren’t rushed at all. Our Server was friendly and efficient.

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SH
1 review
Dined on March 18, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 3ambience 1

Sticky table, sticky menus, my tea-bag ripped off onto the table because it was so sticky/dirty. The water for my tea wasn't hot. The restaurant had tons of gnats, one of them fell into my teacup and we killed about 3 of them ourselves.

Potstickers came out burnt, inedible. Main meals came out at different times for different people. I got half of my meal before the other half, left without soysauce and half of my dinner. The sushi wasn't as good as it had been previous years. Coleslaw was just salad- nothing on it.

Wait time was longer than any time I've ever been there. Understaffed, throwing inexperienced staff onto the floor to deal with the messes they didn't know how to handle yet. We were at dinner for almost 3 hours. We took dessert to go because we were sick of waiting.

The toilet in the women's room was also broken- a pool of water surrounded one of the toilets.

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OT
Tampa
1 review
Dined on March 16, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 1ambience 3

the last 2 times we've visited this restaurant it took over 45 minutes to get our meals served because of delays in the kitchen or sushi bar.

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DW
Tampa
2 reviews
Dined on March 15, 2019
Overall 2food 1service 3ambience 2

Steak stir-fry super spicy for no reason love spicy food... The Miso salmon was okay portion size wasn't. Flatbread with the lamb very weird tasting probably would never do that again. Ordered lemon drop martini drink came out after the appetizers so what do you think about that speed? Place is kind of dark customer service is average at best. For the amount of money spent not worth the value.

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S
Orlando
4 reviews
Dined on March 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

In Sarasota for an event and KG was the only restaurant that would accommodate our simple dietary request. Awesome food and service! Thank you!!

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OT
Naples
101 reviews
Dined on March 9, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 4

Love Kona Grill but this visit wasn't as good as usual. We were there after lunch rush on a Saturday so service should have been much faster. Usually we never wait as long as we did on this day. I had Pad Thai which was great. My girlfriend and friend both had chicken avocado sandwiches. His was good but my girlfriends chicken was burnt to a crisp. Unfortunately we did not have time to wait for new sandwich so she just didn't eat it. We will try again another day and hopefully things will be better.

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EG
Orlando
3 reviews
Dined on March 1, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 3ambience 4

We had not been to this Kona in a while, probably 3 months, and wow were we disappointed. We ordered their Churrasco which we use to love and it was terrible. It was salty, over cooked and much smaller portions which not worth the money. We ended up returning both plates and ordering something else. Well that was also not great. The pad their also salty and the macadamia chicken was strange. Not what we have been use too before. The quality overall seemed to have deteriorated. Overall very disappointed.
Thank you

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CF
1 review
Dined on March 1, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 4

Went to happy hour on a Saturday. Great deal with $5 meals. Was very busy and they seemed like they were a bit short staffed as the wait was longer than expected. Altogether a good experience though and great value.

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BP
Atlantic Canada
3 reviews
Dined on March 1, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 2

Ate outside. Inside was absolutely freezing with A/C on bust. Our meal took 45 mins to arrive which was longer than we would have liked. Service was so-so with us having to find our server to get our bill. He just kind of disappeared. We likely won’t return.

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J
Naples
1 review
Dined on February 24, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 4

The service here is not great at all. We were asked if we wanted to sit in the dining room or the lounge & we chose dining room because the bar/lounge area was full of families with children and we were out for a moms night out and a birthday. Our server had zero personality. When we asked about the drink specials he said they had happy hour but we had to sit at the bar for that. Idk why the hostess would not tell us that. So if we didn’t want to pay double for our alcoholic beverages, the 6 of us would have to get up and move to where all the kids were. The whole time we were there, the server had the personality of a wet rag. Not exactly the way I wanted to spend my birthday dinner. I won’t be back anytime soon.

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OT
Toronto
1 review
Dined on February 17, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 3

Host and servers (all polite) didn’t alert us that kitchen was backed up and it would be a long wait for our dinner, about which we inquired several times.

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SD
Tampa
17 reviews
Dined on February 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

There were 10 in my party and all the food was served at once, and all freshly prepared. Service and food were superb. Everyone was impressed

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MM
Tampa
35 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 5ambience 3

Kona is one of our regular stops. We usually love it there. Went on Valentine’s Day with another couple. The place was busy for sure but Kona was apparently way understaffed that night. We had a waitress we’ve had before and she was great but the kitchen could not keep up. Dinner arrived before all the appetizers were served. Food that did arrive at the table was OK but just too much chaos that night to give a high rating. Manager stopped by to apologize. That was appreciated. Doesn’t mean we won’t go back because we will. They just had an off night. Sorry.

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OT
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2019
Overall 1food 3service 1ambience 3

Family dinner with three kids. We went early and were seated right away. Great kids meal options at great price. We ordered three appetizers and then three kids meals and two adult meals. Waited 40 minutes and all the food came out at the same time. Not ideal for children to wait 40 minutes. Terrible that the appetizers came out with the dinners. Extremely disappointed in service at this restaurant which is a shame because it has great potential.

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DB
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 3ambience 3

Staff are friendly and the service was good. But we came to eat and to be honest the food was not great. Reminds me of food court dinning in better surroundings with a decent drinks menu.

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MN
Minneapolis
3 reviews
Dined on February 11, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 1ambience 1

We had a reservation at 7. We arrived at 710. the hostess acted like the restaurant was closing and they were having to go above and beyond to seat and serve us dinner.

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JA
Orlando
1 review
Dined on February 8, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 2

service was bad, waited 45min for apps. and 1.5 hrs for main course. drinks only refilled once. never aging.

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LV
1 review
Dined on February 3, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 5

We were seated immediately and our server stopped by a few minutes later to get our drink order. Nice guy but not very enthusiastic. We did happy hour which was awesome ! Had a little mishap with some food but it was taken care of quickly. We had been given gift cards for Christmas to use for our meal only to be told when paying our bill that the computer was down and they couldn’t accept them:-/.
Not the best visit but we’ll return and try again because the food was delicious.

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DJ
San Diego
7 reviews
Dined on February 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Great service and really good food

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k
Chicago
4 reviews
Dined on January 30, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Good !! Food was great sea bass excellent!

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OT
Tampa
3 reviews
Dined on January 26, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 3

Wonderful , always I asked for Elsa , she it’s the best waiters , food on time .
Great food , good happy hour

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OT
Tampa
1 review
Dined on January 25, 2019
Overall 1food 2service 1ambience 4

The waiter was horrible. The meals came out about ten minutes apart... With no apology. We watched him cleaning off the side of a dish with a dirty cloth and delivering the food to a table.

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M
Tampa
115 reviews
Dined on January 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Our party of 7 thoroughly enjoyed ourselves at Kona Grill on Sunday night! Every item we ordered was exquisitely prepared, delicious and abundant! Drinks and food arrived in a timely fashion and our server, Kevin, was excellent!!! Kudos to Kona Grill!

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BS
Naples
1 review
Dined on January 1, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 5

The miso sea bass is my absolute favorite!

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J
E. Tennessee
5 reviews
Dined on December 31, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 2

Decided to try for the first time on New Years Eve with family. We were happy to get seated sooner that our reservation time, but were disappointed with the seat we were given. It was a corner booth by the kitchen, and while we all had adequate space the seating surface showed excessive wear. The restaurant was not very busy, so we should have asked for another option immediately. We also noticed an unpleasant smell nearby. Overall we did have a good waiter, who was very attentive and helpful. We just were not impressed with the look and feel of the dining area. Doubtful we will return for another visit.

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CV
Minneapolis
3 reviews
Dined on December 31, 2018
Overall 1food 5service 1ambience 3

Service was sooo slow! So many mistakes. Our food was delicious but other then that horrible experience.

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