Zen Box Izakaya

4.6
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502 Reviews
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$30 and under
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Japanese
A Ramen-centric Izakaya owned by Chef & Wife in Downtown Minneapolis' Mill District.

We are devoted to the pleasures of Craft Ramen & Japanese comfort food.
Zen Box Izakaya is THE place for ‘Good Food, Good Drinks and Good Company’.
Established since 2011.
What 502 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.6based on recent ratings
4.6
food
4.5
service
4.3
ambience
4.4
value
Noise · Moderate
98% of people would recommend it to a friend
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LC
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent food as always! Ramen is the best in town!

SP
Denver
6 reviews
Dined on October 12, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

Zen Box Izakaya has great food and service, my only complaint is that the tables are too close together; I felt like I was sitting with the table next to me. I guess it just made it more Japanese!

OT
Minneapolis
4 reviews
Dined on October 12, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 3

Kimchi Ramen was good. Teriyaki chicken rice bowl had no flavor.

VM
Minneapolis
20 reviews
Dined on October 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Japanese comfort food of the very best quality! We started with a fun cocktail and went on to small plates including veggie dumplings and a tasty salad. We had veggie noodles that were flavorful and amazing. The check was surprisingly moderate.

My daughter suggested the restaurant but I will certainly be back!

OT
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on October 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 3

This is Japanese comfort food at its finest. It's NOT a sushi bar, so bring an open mind and a sense of adventure and you'll have an outstanding dining experience.

OT
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on September 28, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 3ambience 3

Ramen broth is rather thick. Noodles are too thin for my liking. Fun experience though.

m
Minneapolis
2 reviews
Dined on September 26, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

There's a reason this place keeps getting rated best ramen in town. Just delightful. Also, the 'wild card' sake option was fun and the sake I got was great.

OT
Minneapolis
7 reviews
Dined on September 25, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Amazing kimchi ramen!

Report
DC
Minneapolis
2 reviews
Dined on September 20, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This is an amazing restaurant. Wonderful food. Excellent wait staff and service.

RL
1 review
Dined on September 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food and their house cocktails were excellent. Very attentive waitstaff, and food and drinks came out quickly.

OT
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on August 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food was great and the server was kind! I would highly recommend the Yuzu Chuhai!

FW
Minneapolis
12 reviews
Dined on August 17, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Felt like I was back in Tokyo. Excellent all around. Plus great cocktails

OT
Chicago
6 reviews
Dined on August 17, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

Food was good but service was better!

o
Milwaukee
17 reviews
Dined on August 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We go here every time we are up in Minnie (live in Madison, visit Minnie a couple times a year) and it never disappoints, always amazes and pleases. Great menu, great service, great noodles and ramen, great apps, great, great, great! Love this place!

M
Minneapolis
10 reviews
Dined on August 3, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 2

Second visit to Zenbox. Food was average, whereas last time I was blown away by the flavors. Cold beef tataki tasted like cardboard and my cocktail was not flavorful. I would have sent them back but our server did not stop by once during our meal to offer more drinks/water or ask how the food was. Bummed out because I really liked this place the first time I tried it. Maybe it was just an off night for food and service. I’ll try again.

MA
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on August 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Our group of four really enjoyed our meal at the Zen Box. As always, the servers were cheerful and helpful. We had a selection from the appetizers and small plate menus and everything we chose was absolutely delicious and attractively presented. This was our third or fourth time at the Zen Box and our impression is always the same--amazing food, great service and that everyone--those being served and the staff serving are all having a pleasurable time. Thanks so much!

OT
1 review
Dined on July 31, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

I placed a reservation but they couldn't find a table for us but they offered us a seat the the bar area.

C
1 review
Dined on July 31, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

Very yummy food. Service was a little flaky at times, but not too bad.

E
1 review
Dined on July 10, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Love this place! I've had their takeout many times but this was the first time I was able to dine in. I am disappointed that some of the things that were on their menu when I first started going are no longer on it, but the options are still delicious and interesting.

LA
Los Angeles
10 reviews
Dined on July 6, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Good food and excellent drinks - cute casual dining for out of town visitors like us craving Asian food.

SE
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on July 5, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

The ramen was very good and the service was excellent.

S
Minneapolis
6 reviews
Dined on June 17, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I always have great time at Zen Box!

LS
Minneapolis
9 reviews
Dined on June 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great service and food is always good! Ramen and tempura avocado are my favorites

SC
1 review
Dined on June 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always a great place to and hang out; the food is great! As usual my friends and I got the ramen, delicious, and their small sharing plates are awesome to try something new!

OT
Minneapolis
11 reviews
Dined on May 31, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

First time to ZenBix and will definitely be back. The server’s explanations and suggestions were extremely helpful and made our first experience a delight!

OT
Chicago
2 reviews
Dined on May 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing food, service, everything! My go to Ramen spot in the city!! Kimchi Ramen is the best!!

BB
1 review
Dined on May 29, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 2

I wasn’t the biggest fan on how close the tables are, I feel like I can’t have a conversation without hearing what the person next to me is talking about

OT
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on May 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Awesome. We always come here and never disappointed

OT
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on May 22, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing!! Great food and service!

BG
1 review
Dined on May 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It was our first visit and the staff was extremely helpful and friendly. It was fun to order many things and have the whole family try everything.

N
Minneapolis
44 reviews
Dined on May 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food was fantastic and was a great dinner to celebrate Garth Brooks! The apps we delicious!!!

SK
Minneapolis
3 reviews
Dined on May 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Love the Salmon Zen box

B
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on May 1, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 1

Our waiter was wonderful, but the restaurant was so loud we could hardly hear each other. The food lacked the flavor I would have expected. It was overly salty and did not have a lot of spice. Overall, rather bland.

P
Minneapolis
17 reviews
Dined on April 26, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Never disappointed with Zenbox! The most authentic Japanese experience I've found in the Twin Cities. They even greet you in the same fashion as many restaurants in Japan do when you walk through the door (irasshaimasei!). My only quarrel is that this place gets loud. Otherwise the food is delicious and the service is good.

JM
New York Area
7 reviews
Dined on April 19, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great staff, fantastic food. The atsuage tofu was life changingly good, as was the buta no kakuni. Equally good for vegetarians and pork lovers!

CB
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on April 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

First vist. Delicious and great service--friendly, helpful, prompt. Casual, relaxed setting. Great food. The shishito appetizer was so tasty and the "broth-less ramen" was fabulous. Already craving it again.

MK
Minneapolis
8 reviews
Dined on April 13, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

Zen Box food and drink menus have changed significantly from perhaps 6 months ago. Although quality and service are still good, the variety is more limited. Unfortunately not a welcome change.

OT
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on April 6, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 2

Very inattentive service. Lots of waitstaff were just standing around talking to each other and didn’t clean up messes, refill water or ask about the food.

RT
Minneapolis
10 reviews
Dined on March 27, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Our first visit to Zen Box Izakaya preceded a play at the Guthrie, so we opted not to have ramen . . . Sacrilege, but also a great call. Our custom drinks were very good, and we got to sample a variety of snacks and small plates. The avocado tempura and the gyoza were our favorites, but all were wonderful. We’ll be back for ramen next time.

JC
Indiana
10 reviews
Dined on March 22, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 5ambience 5

We used to love Zen Box. New menu is smaller. No more shrimp shumai. Beers are weird. Gyoza overly crispy. It remains very busy so best to make reservations.

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