Permanently Closed - Saffron Restaurant & Lounge

4.5
1780 reviews
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$30 and under
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Mediterranean

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About

This restaurant is permanently closed. Permanently Closed - The critically-acclaimed and award-winning Saffron Restaurant & Lounge is the brain child of brothers Saed & Chef Sameh Wadi. Opened in February 2007 and now nationally recognized for their fresh interpretation of traditional Mediterranean cuisine, featuring a seasonal menu with a strong emphasis on the old world tradition of sharing a meal, from the delectable Mezze/Tapas to the unique selections of Tagine and Entrées, you are sure to find something to crave.

The bar at Saffron is an ideal location to sit and relax while enjoying unique, hand-crafted cocktails, craft beer or enjoy a glass of wine from the perfectly adapted wine list with selections from around the world.

The space itself boast a vibrant, warm and inviting atmosphere, while staying casual and fun, which makes it a perfect location for dinner with family and friends, business associates or an intimate night out.
Dining Style
Casual Dining
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Cuisines
Mediterranean, Tapas / Small Plates, Middle Eastern
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Hours of operation
Happy Hour: Monday - Friday: 4:00pm - 6:00pm
Dinner: Monday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 10:00pm
Dinner: Friday & Saturday: 5:00pm - 11:00pm
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Phone number
(612) 746-5533
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Payment options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Casual Dress
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Executive chef
Sameh Wadi
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Private party facilities
Saffron offers dining room buy-outs with a food and beverage minimum. Multi-Course menu and wine flights to suit the most discerning tastes are available upon request. Buffet Style private party are available to.
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Private party contact
Saed Wadi: (612) 746-5533
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Catering
Saffron is pleased to offer off-site catering in the convenience of your home or office.
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Cross street
1st Avenue & 3rd Street
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Parking details
There is metered parking on 3rd St & 2nd Ave $1 per hour (meters enforced until 11pm daily for 2 hours). A convenient secured & well lit parking ramp (Ramp C) is located on 2nd Ave between 3rd & 4th St (just across the street from our building).
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Public transit
If you are taking the light rail to downtown Minneapolis, we are only 2 blocks away from the last stop at first Ave.
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Entertainment
Chef's music selections.
Additional
Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, BYO Wine, Chef's Table, Corkage Fee, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking, Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine
What 1780 People Are SayingWrite a review
Overall ratings and reviews
4.5based on all time ratings
4.5
food
4.5
service
4.2
ambience
4.1
value
Noise · Moderate
95% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
4
3
2
1
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JA
Minneapolis
8 reviews
Dined on December 3, 2016
Overall 4food 4service 2ambience 4

Tagine was very good. ..owner friendly. .bar staff attentive to friends. .no one server thus poor service

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JB
Minneapolis
5 reviews
Dined on December 3, 2016
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fantastic restaurant and very sad it is closed now.

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OT
Minneapolis
2 reviews
Dined on December 2, 2016
Overall 5food 5service 3ambience 5

Too bad Saffron has closed!
It was a gem serving authentic Moroccan cuisine and amazing ingredients.
Hopefully Chef will open another version somewhere else in the future.

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OT
Minneapolis
2 reviews
Dined on December 2, 2016
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Sad to see such a fantastic place come to an end. Glad we got in one last meal. It was epic as always.

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OC
Minneapolis
3 reviews
Dined on December 1, 2016
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Food was fantastic. Service was friendly and efficient. Owner made us feel like lifetime friends. Too bad it'seems closing. Wish we had known about it sooner. We would have been regulars.

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OT
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on December 1, 2016
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Fabulous, creative ethnic cuisine. Sorry that it won't be available any longer (closing due to landlord issues), but we look forward the chef-owner's next venture. We bought his cookbook, so we can try some some of his recipes at home.

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J
Minneapolis
10 reviews
Dined on December 1, 2016
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We all agreed this was our favorite Saffron meal, we loved the Duck Meatball Tangine, and the Lamb Shank, tender and moist, also loved the rich hummus and slow cooked green beans perfect starters.... all with the Chef Wadi wonderful spicy, smoky touch. We will miss this restaurant and hope we don't have to wait too long before Saed and Sameh open a new place soon.

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R
Chicago
6 reviews
Dined on November 25, 2016
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Quite an awesome cocktail list and great food!

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BB
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on November 25, 2016
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

One of our favorite restaurants not just in Minnesota but in this country. We were frequent guests, eating there about eight times per year, and are very sad the restaurant is closing on Dec. 3.

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m
Minneapolis
11 reviews
Dined on November 22, 2016
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Another amazing meal, start to finish. What a shame to lose such a gem of a restaurant. Sameh Wadi & co. you will be sorely missed in this space. :(

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R
Minneapolis
21 reviews
Dined on November 22, 2016
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great as usual! Saffron will be sorely missed.

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F
Minneapolis
2 reviews
Dined on November 17, 2016
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fabulous restaurant with an intelligent and helpful staff. So very sad they are losing their lease. Hope they relocate to an even better place soon.

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BS
Minneapolis
15 reviews
Dined on November 12, 2016
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Food was phenomenal! Especially the Fried Cauliflower with yogurt dipping sauce and the Lamb Bacon tomato sandwich. Best Middle-Eastern tapas anywhere!

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SF
Las Vegas
3 reviews
Dined on November 11, 2016
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 3

I have eaten here before and the food was as good as I remembered. The tangine dishes are great and come in a small and a large. Starters and sides are nicely different than the norm. Waiter was knowledgeable and helpful.

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MC
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on November 10, 2016
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

Food is tasty and we enjoyed very much. More of a "boutique" restaurant. I wanted more!! The croquette with crispy brussel sprouts was oh so good.

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OT
Charlotte
4 reviews
Dined on November 9, 2016
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Very authentic and flavorful place, loved it!

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OT
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on October 29, 2016
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food was a unique and modern Mediterranean food. Best gnocchi dish I've ever had and the traditional dessert was amazing.

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OT
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on October 29, 2016
Overall 2food 1service 5ambience 3

The service was amazing and they were very attentive, that's the only reason they got 2 stars. The food was extremely over priced for the quality and amount received. The gnocchi was bland, extremely tiny, and had well over cooked food (almost burnt). Our dessert was a joke for the price ($10), it was essential 3 bite sized pieces of chocolate. I am totally fine throwing down money for a nice dinner out but paying $90 for two people who shared all their food for a 3 course meal is ridiculous for the quality we received.

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AM
Minneapolis
3 reviews
Dined on October 28, 2016
Overall 5food 5service 3ambience 3

The food at Saffron is perfectly prepared Mediterranean food. The roasted chicken is the best chicken I have ever had and the Turk hummus is lovely.
Our server was inattentive but the expo was very attentive.

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NG
Minneapolis
5 reviews
Dined on October 27, 2016
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Extraordinary. We have our next five trips planned around the seasonal menu. Chris was an excellent server and helped us find exactly what we wanted; including things we wouldn't had thought to order.

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F
Minneapolis
19 reviews
Dined on October 22, 2016
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent meal again! We introduced friends to the Saffron experience. I know they will return.

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OT
Minneapolis
2 reviews
Dined on October 22, 2016
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 4

Food is good but was not wowed - could be because I am from Mediterranean region and those felt limited in options and nothing too exotic. The staff is great and the service and drinks are awesome.

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OT
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on October 21, 2016
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Great experience... Service staff and food!!!!

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t
Minneapolis
14 reviews
Dined on October 20, 2016
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

Food was not as expected. Lamb with orzo has too much tomate and the intensity of the citric kills all the others flavors. Dessert with chocolate and baklava was also so intense dark chocolate and did my have the consistency of a custard it was more like a froZen mousse.

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OT
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on October 20, 2016
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food was very good. Good variety good service. Really enjoyed the andsangria.

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RS
Minneapolis
7 reviews
Dined on October 19, 2016
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Amazing and creative food. Always a good time. Just go and enjoy.

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EE
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on October 19, 2016
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 2

Attended for restaurant week. Both of us ordered the lamb, and they served us basically pot roast but offered no explanation.

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OT
Minneapolis
3 reviews
Dined on October 18, 2016
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My first time visiting and had a wonderful evening! It was a busy Tuesday night due to Restaurant Week so we sat at the bar for dinner. The bartenders were awesome and lively with personal recommendations that made our experience even better. LOVED the decor - the bar wall mural is super cool and there are interesting light fixtures throughout the place. Overall, delicious with a great vibe!

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B
Minneapolis
12 reviews
Dined on October 17, 2016
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

We returned to Saffron for Restaurant Week and were delighted with the results. My wife and I ordered different dishes for each course and were thus able to sample 2/3s of the offerings. We both enjoyed our respective orders and decided that there was not a loser among them.

The room remains charming and the noise levels seemed lower than in similarly sized and populated restaurants. We especially enjoyed being seated at the corner banquette table, lolling on the pillows.

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OT
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on October 17, 2016
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

The food was well prepared, healthy and used ingredients in an imaginative way. The service was very good. it was attentive without being intrusive.

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OT
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on October 15, 2016
Overall 1food 1service 3ambience 1

I will never go to this restaurant again. Service was ok took along to be greeted and to get our bill. Food was ok the cauliflower appetizer was so hard that when you tried to cut it flew off the plate.

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C
Chicago
9 reviews
Dined on October 15, 2016
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

We are from Chicago and in the area visiting with our son who attends U of M. The food was absolutely delicious, very creative and presented well. What a treat it was dining here as all of our food was extraordinary. We will be back.

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JA
New York Area
24 reviews
Dined on October 15, 2016
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Great place to share small plates of delicious Mediterranean food. Interesting cocktails. We have a tendency to over order here - pace yourself

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OT
Adelaide / SA
8 reviews
Dined on October 14, 2016
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

A great find for a night out with girlfriends! No pressure to end the night quickly and a wonderfully patient server make this a great spot.

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OT
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on October 12, 2016
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food. Great flavors. One of our favorites for vegan dining. It's a must stop!

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CC
Des Moines
27 reviews
Dined on October 8, 2016
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing food. Warm atmosphere. Excellent service. We will be back!!

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m
Atlanta
41 reviews
Dined on October 7, 2016
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Fun place to go for tapas. Didn't get to try the whole menu (obviously), but what we had was pretty good and there were other things we had wished we'd gotten as well.

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R
Minneapolis
21 reviews
Dined on October 4, 2016
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Creative cocktails, wonderful food and exceptional service. A gem.

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JJ
Minneapolis
6 reviews
Dined on October 1, 2016
Overall 2food 3service 2ambience 2

Good menu but very small portions. Service slow in all respects. Loud environment.

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P
Minneapolis
29 reviews
Dined on October 1, 2016
Overall 3food 3service 5ambience 2

The food was good, and the service was excellent (Molly's one of the better servers we've ever encountered in a restaurant), but the items were very overpriced. My tagine had one small boneless lamb shank, floating in a thin broth, with a few very small potatoes. For $32?! Give me a break. Thankfully, they served plenty of pita to dip into the broth, but not the best tagine I've had. Faces Mears Park serves a much better dish.

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