I have rated this restaurant extremely highly in the past based on two prior experiences. My most recent experience was not good. My rabbit entree was barely warm on the outside and literally cold to the touch when I cut into it. When the wine guy (I can't say he was a sommelier) brought the bottle to the table, I asked him whether it should be decanted and he assured me that that was not necessary. Perhaps it was not necessary for him because he was not drinking it, but for those of us who were, we had sediment in our glasses. When a fine dining establishment like this serves food that has to be sent back or wine that's defective for some reason, it kills the good feeling that the guests have since now they have to deal with a bad and embarrassing situation. My two dinner guests certainly were not expecting to have to put up with the awkwardness created by these situations and neither was I. There was no offer of a complimentary drink or desert or anything else that restaurants sometimes offer as a gesture of hospitality when they make a serious gaffe (although I'd much rather pay for my drinks, desert and everything else and get good food rather than have to send something back and get a free scoop of ice cream). I found a better fine dining place in State College, the restaurant at the Carnegie Inn and Spa, where all the food and service were excellent.
As always really good and creative food with excellent service in a attractive room and exhibition kitchen.
Our friends were seated AFTER us but served BEFORE us. The table beside us was offered bread but we were NEVER offered bread. Not one of the meals ordered by our party of four was good, including the Cesar Salad. Location in town is great but would rather travel a bit further for better food.
Delicious and sophisticated beyond what you’d expect in a college town. Nice waiter but spotty service — had to ask for bread, had to ask for salt and pepper, had to ask for more water, had to flag him down to take our credit card. Also some serious ventilation issues which shouldn’t be present in a restaurant of this caliber. I shouldn’t be cold and uncomfortable when I’m paying $80+ per person. Didn’t ruin the experience but made it far less memorable than it should have been.
the service and the food were both disappointing.... the service and the food were both disappointing
The best cocktails and terrific service. Though the food is expensive, the flavors and freshness are truly exceptional.
Creative menu with interesting flavor combinations. Great gluten free options. Notable wine list.
Overall a nice atmosphere. A duo was playing guitar and singing-they were really good.
Hostess was very nice, telling us about parking which was a weird set up. I would imagine the lot they use is full on a busy night.
Our waitress was very nice and attentive.
The food was good & creative but portions are smaller so the value isn't there. The food was good & creative but portions are smaller so the value isn't there.We found oddly funny that Rabbit stew was a special for the day-luckily our children were older ; )
Downfall was when we went to bathroom both the women and men's and they were not clean.
This was my 4th visit to Zola's and I have to say I was somewhat disappointed. We arrived for our reservation and had to wait about 10 minutes while the table was slowly reset for us. This was done by the hostess who had to seat other people while doing this. I have had their crab cake every time I have been there and loved it but this time it was not very flavorful. I do not like to be rushed but waiting for our drink order was unbearably long. We both ordered the Saffron Cioppino and even though it was only 7 our waiter told us we were getting the last two orders. While we were happy about that there were no clams and maybe 2 or 3 shrimp. The bulk of the order was mussels which I do not even like that much. I feel they should have let us know that. I also think they should expand their menu just a bit. There were not very many options. I know I will go back again since out all the restaurants in State College this one does have the nicest atmosphere but they need to step it up a bit.
We came in from out of town to take our daughter out for her birthday since she goes to Penn State. The ambiance was nice however the food fell much too short of our expectations. I ordered the seafood cioppino dish and the shrimps were very small, previously frozen and fishy. The crab legs were freezer burned and dry and the the muscles were by far awful. My birthday daughter ordered the fish special and it was burned and dried. No fish just a crusted piece of skin. My younger daughter ordered the fillet mignon cooked medium but I think they missed understood because the cow was still alive. In short, we wasted $370.00.
An Ok restaurant with unfriendly waiter! Looks like he didnt want to be there, we have allergies & even before finishing our question he would say NO to any changes- seem ignorant about ingredients on each dish. Wouldnt go again, the place has no ambiance- as I was walking towards the restroom, another waiter who was picking up empty plates from a table , spilled all the remaining vinagrette on the floor.... Hire better waiters please!!!
Best wait staff and delicious gelato. The. Food was fresh and a good portion size.
There was only 1 server for the entire restaurant. There was s table of 10, a table of 8 and about 8 other tables with 2-4 people each. I sat for 30 minutes watching him take orders and check on other tables while I waited. At least I had wine to drink. Finally moved snd sat in the bar to get served dinner.
A great place for a nice dinner date! Service was excellent. The entrees were very good, though our appetizer ("Fluke") ceviche was mediocre at best. Great cocktails, extensive wine list, and nice ambience. The prices are a little high for what you get. I recommend calling ahead to ensure a table.
We have been here several times and enjoy the food and atmosphere.
The food and service were wonderful. It was a great date night. It's pretty expensive...we had a gift card which is what brought us there for the first time. Loved it but possibly the most expensive restaurant in State College!
Great Galentine’s dinner experience!
Wonderful ambiance and the best crab cake I’ve ever had! Servers were fast and attentive and all the food (filet & cioppino) was excellent!
Great! only wish they served a little later for post theatre dining etc.
Unfortunately, State College does not have very many fine dining restaurants which, is good for Zola but bad for you as a customer. Zola is one of the better restaurants in town but it is one of the most expensive one also. A filet is $45.00 al-la-carte, which beats most top steak house in price but not flavor. An average entre is $32-$45 and dinner salads are $12. Add in drinks and you meal is about $85/person which is ok for a "great meal" but at Zola it good but not great. It should have been a telling sign when I went onto Open Table for a reservation on Feb. 10th, the Saturday before Valentine's Day and Zola was the only restaurant that came up with many open time slots. And the restaurant was about half full at 7:00 pm. I would put Zola on my foodie list but at the bottom for State College.
Enjoyed our dinner immensely. Nice and quiet atmosphere
Good food, but disappointing service. Our waiter seemed distracted and in too much of a hurry.
Very disappointed. I have always loved Zola and go every time I am in st coll. No more. The ceviche was tiny and tasteless, beet salad had one beet and lits of lettuce, pasta was bland and small, sea bass tiny, cocktails and red snapper were the only good thing. An expensive, un satisfying dinner.
I had a terrible experience at Zola. The waitress and manager were incredibly rude, and the food definitely fell short. If you can’t execute ceviche well, you really shouldn’t have it on the menu. I lived in NYC for over ten years, and I’ve never been treated so poorly in a restaurant as I was treated at Zola.
The service could have been improved. My sense is that the wait staff were individually quite attentive but perhaps there were too few of them or perhaps the "team" wasn't playing all together. If it weren't for that, this place would be 4-5 stars across
Great food great music, and great fun!!! A bit Pricey.
Waiter was attentive. Food was inconsistent. We started with champagne, a crab cake and mushroom tacos. The men enjoyed the tacos, but the crab cake lacked flavor, was slightly dry even though it was full of crab. The sauce under the crab cake was cold and bland. My husbands filet was perfect. My son had the crispy redfish and really enjoyed
It. My salmon was served raw. My side dish was cold. I did
Send the salmon back. It retuned medium rare. It was a special occasion and I did not want to send it back again, so I ate the edges. If I find myself back at Penn State for a special occasion I don’t think I would return to Zola, even though overall it was positive.
The service is horrible , the menu is horrible, is over priced ! Food just ok .Everything took forever ! To get a beer,To get bread , one slice of cake was a 30 minute wait ! Will never go back !
If you're looking for a Manhattan style experience, this is the place to go. The food was excellent, the wine was great, and the service was fantastic. It is pricey however for State College.
This was my second visit to Zola’s and each time everything was exceptional. We had raw oysters grow east and west coast. Fresh and tasty
The entrees and appetizers were excellent. Brussels sprout gratin is tasty, especially with the bacon pieces. Our entrees have been scallops, salmon, pork tenderloin. Everything has been cooked perfectly. The only miss may have been the salmon skin. If it was supposed to be crisp, it was not. It was fresh and delicious nonetheless
The food is perfectly paced. Entrees followed appetizers at a perfect time.
Wine list is superb and beer list is very good
Service could be a tad faster but when enjoying a high end dinner, this is a minor issue.
Zola is one of the best restaurants in State College. It’s a little pricey for the area but a good value. The wine list is exceptional. Good for special occasions or important meetings.
We ordered the Oyster special, Crab Cake and cheese platter for appetizer. Oysters were fresh and delicious, crab cake was so good but was cool when it was served. The cheese platter was delicious. My husband had the filet which was cooked to perfection and we had the butternut squash ravioli. Both were very good. We ordered wine that was good as well
Have visited Zola's quite a few times over the years, prior and after new ownership. Sorry, but this place is a dispointment, dinners are average at best, although drinks are great. Too bad as State College really needs a high end restaurant scene, although Zola's tries, it falls quite short in filling the gap.
Excellent wine list. Delicious food with a beautiful presentation!
My daughter and I had a lovely dinner here on Saturday. Our waiter was very attentive and the food and wine was delicious. I do with there had been a few more choices on the menu though or a daily special. I had the scallops which were so delicious and my daughter was raving about how good her salmon was. Of course we did save room for dessert which was wonderful. We will be back.
In the past weeks I've visited Zola Kitchen and every time I have a different experiences.
The food is very inconsistent. I have order the same plate (Filet Mignon) and each time the term of the meat is different, every experience been less enjoyable.
The waiter on our last visit didn't listen at all to our requests (term of meat, side of plates, drinks, etc.) and would bring us our order the way he wanted, not how we ordered them.
Food was great, service was a major “opportunity”. Also, details such as bathroom cleanliness, clutter in the walkways, and tables that are unstable are low-hanging fruit for a restaurant of such potential. I’d go back but won’t go out of my way to do so.
Food very good but somewhat overpriced. Whole fried fish was overcooked. Overall very good. Over $500 for eight people with one bottle of wine ($43). Service was excellent and attentive without being overbearing.
We have eaten at Zola several times and the food is good but not worth the prices they charge. It's an a-la-carte menu where a dinner salad is $12.00, the salmon entrée was $38.00, cocktails start at $11.00 and with wine, the sky is the limit. Expect about $80.00/person average. I live in Pittsburgh but travel all over the country for my job and I get to try many of the new "farm-to-table" type restaurants with some very talented chefs. On a scale of 1-10, I'll give Zola a 7 but the service was only a 5. Not only was the service slow, they were slightly incompetent. They cleared the table after the salad (I guess they thought we were done with dinner) and forgot to give us forks with our entrée. We has to wait for extended times when we asked for bread, or salt, or water. The drinks took forever to show up yet the place was only 70% full as it was not a football weekend. There are only a few "up-scale" restaurants in State College since it is a college town and Zola is one of them but I would consider other options before selecting Zola. Unfortunately, Zola doesn't need to change since it is one of the few restaurants downtown that doesn't cater to the college crowd. The atmosphere is very bright and very loud since the bar is part of the restaurant with a simple, six foot room divider, separating the two areas. If there is entertainment in the bar, be prepared to scream during dinner.
Really Loved the food. I do feel that the service could be a bit better. We had people bringing plates to our table and not pre- busing the tables , which was a bit annoying. It took until the Wine Sommelier came around for him to notice the dishes on our table and Said" I will get someone to clear these.
Otherwise Very good.