Cafe Zola

4.3
412 reviews
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$30 and under
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Contemporary American
Top tags:
  • Brunch
  • Creative Cuisine
  • Neighbourhood Gem
Café Zola is an independently owned and operated restaurant serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner in downtown Ann Arbor. Our menus are inspired by flavors and recipes borrowed from European and Mediterranean cultures and cuisine, including some Turkish recipes. We are committed to sourcing the freshest and highest quality ingredients available and supporting local businesses, farms, and suppliers. Café Zola’s seasonal menus emphasize organic and local produce, dairy, eggs, poultry, meat and seafood. Our full service bar features artisanal cocktails, happy hour specials, and a rotating wine selection chosen from various small production vineyards throughout the world. We accept reservations for parties of six or more for brunch on Saturday and Sunday. We accept reservations for groups of two or more for dinner and weekday brunch. We are also glad to accommodate large groups and special occasions. If you need a reservation for a large group or special event, please contact us directly.
What 412 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
4.4
Food
4.2
Service
4.2
Ambience
3.8
Value
Noise · Moderate
92% of people would recommend it to a friend
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J
Detroit
12 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 4Food 4Service 5Ambience 4

A unique and creative menu. Tasty too! Food-adventurers will enjoy, priced for the adventure too :)
All in all, a nice special-breakfast or special-lunch venue. Fresh! Fresh! Fresh! Wonderful people.

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e
San Diego
32 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 4Food 4Service 4Ambience 5

We visited the restaurant during restaurant week. The selection of shared dishes and entrees is extensive. The food was very good, but not up to its usual excellent standards.

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AF
Detroit
29 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 4Food 5Service 4Ambience 4

A friend and I were there for AA Restaurant Week. Lunch selections were numerous, many involving egg dishes. Food was very flavorful and very nicely presented. Our server was very friendly and responsive. There were a few mistakes which could have been avoided by informing us or asking questions beforehand. Nothing huge, just a little unnecessary confusion.

Generally, an enjoyable dining experience..

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AA
Detroit
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 4Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Looking to try something different, I made a reservation on a weeknight. We were seated immediately. The service was attentive, the food arrived in a timely manner, and everything tasted delicious. It was a little pricey but other than that, we enjoyed everything. I recommend Cafe Zola and we will definitely return.

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J
Detroit
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Cozy environment, large restaurant week menu. friendly staff!

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CP
Detroit
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 3Food 5Service 3Ambience 3

The food was delicious but the service was poor - our server was competent but she had too many tables and didn't get back to us when we needed something. We had to wait a long time to get water refills, to order dessert, and to get our checks. She also made assumptions about our checks and divided the 4 of us into "couples" - just giving us 2 bills. And while the food and drinks were very tasty, they were way overpriced. My small-ish glass of wine was $12 (the larger one was $18) and the food portions were small for the price (e.g. 2 crab cakes for $14). I would not go back.

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MH
Detroit
1 review
Dined on January 13, 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 4

Five Stars! The food was fantastic--so many delicious options that it was hard to pick! Our server was superb, and she kept us happy with additional drinks and refilled coffee cups. Perhaps a bit on the pricey side, but you can have your omelette made with any ingredients you want.

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OT
1 review
Dined on January 1, 2019
Overall 1Food 1Service 1Ambience 3

We were there for New Years Eve with friends. We have done this before 4 or 5 times and had a wonderful time. They did a 2nd seating - reservation was for 9:45. They sat us at 10. Service was very slow although not extremely crowded since the 1st seating people had finished up. When we ordered they were out of many things on the special menu, By the time we finished eating we were told they had no way to serve dessert or coffee. All upset, we didn’t even stay to toast New Years. They had a dj set up and were preparing tables for the following day shifting furniture and moving tables - it’s as if we weren’t there! Seems the owners were out of town. Great place when someone responsible is taking care of the paying customers. We won’t be back for a long time - well over $300 for dinner and customer service was horrible.

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JJ
1 review
Dined on January 1, 2019
Overall 4Food 4Service 3Ambience 4

Overall good service and very good food. Definitely would go back.

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CP
1 review
Dined on December 31, 2018
Overall 3Food 4Service 3Ambience 3

Our dinner was excellent but the price are crazy... What's happening to A.A.?

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DS
1 review
Dined on December 31, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 3

We were disappointed that there were no white table-clothes for New Years as in the past. Just something a little special. Would like to have a wider price selection on wines. Most by the bottle were a bit pricey.

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n
Las Vegas
28 reviews
Dined on December 31, 2018
Overall 4Food 3Service 5Ambience 4

My food was not real warm and the biscuits were hard. It was tasty. I could’ve sent it back but they were crowded and didn’t want to wait. Our server was spectacular.

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m
New Mexico
2 reviews
Dined on December 30, 2018
Overall 3Food 5Service 1Ambience 4

Service here is notoriously bad. We waited forever to get water, had to ask for bread and were interrupted in the middle of a conversation by someone asking if they could take away a plate.
The scallops, oysters, and lamb were very good.

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k
Milwaukee
4 reviews
Dined on December 24, 2018
Overall 3Food 5Service 1Ambience 3

We waited over a half hour for a server and they were not very busy! Everything else was great, but service needs an improvement.

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OT
Detroit
23 reviews
Dined on December 24, 2018
Overall 4Food 4Service 4Ambience 3

Food always great. There was a big party next to us which was very loud. It didn’t ruin our evening but definitely detracted from it. We understand about holiday celebrations but it would have been nice if the party could have been in the back.it was hard to hear each other speak.

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HW
Atlanta
29 reviews
Dined on December 21, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Although we have not lived in AA in 20 years, every time we make a trip back, Cafe Zola is our # 1 spot for great food, relaxed atmosphere, and tasty drinks. The meal has something for everyone and you can easily make a meal from sharing a few of the starters too. Many times, places change over the years, but Cafe Zola has retained its super-high standard and continues to improve. Thank you for another wonderful experience!!

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AT
1 review
Dined on December 16, 2018
Overall 4Food 5Service 5Ambience 2

The restaurant is extremely crowded. There was a large party at the table behind us and they kept bumping into us. As you could imagine this make drinking anything difficult. Food and service was great and the menu was very very accommodating to all.

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SH
Detroit
4 reviews
Dined on December 16, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

I have only ever been here for breakfast, but the food is always well prepared, fresh and great tasting, with some unusual takeoffs from standard breakfast fare. The lines out the door speak to it’s popularity, although the wait never seems to be very long. Any place with a variety of coffee selections and fresh squeezed OJ is tops in my book.

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M
Detroit
4 reviews
Dined on December 11, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Perfect for work breakfast meetings. Really appreciate the 8 am opening.

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OT
Western NC
1 review
Dined on December 8, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Food and service was very good. Would go back for sure.

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AB
Chicago
1 review
Dined on December 2, 2018
Overall 4Food 4Service 4Ambience 4

The food and service were great! I really appreciated that we could make a reservation because usually I have to wait for at least 45 minutes to eat brunch at other places. It was a bit pricey but I would visit again.

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OT
Kansas City
1 review
Dined on December 2, 2018
Overall 3Food 3Service 2Ambience 3

The pickle was good. The goat cheese was good,

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S
Detroit
1 review
Dined on December 1, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Great food and service! We both can’t wait to go back!

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TJ
Detroit
17 reviews
Dined on December 1, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Another great evening all around.

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m
Charleston
2 reviews
Dined on December 1, 2018
Overall 5Food 4Service 4Ambience 5

Busy night... waitress greeted us promptly when we were seated but cocktails took more than 40 minutes to make it to our table after we ordered. Several items on the menu were not available (assume because of the busy night). Still had a great time.

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CF
1 review
Dined on December 1, 2018
Overall 3Food 3Service 4Ambience 3

I have been to Zola before so was disappointed this time. We were sat for over 20 minutes before someone greeted us. Our server was very attentive once we got a server but my salad was tasteless and the shrimp was tough and over cooked. My daughter ordered some pasta and got about 1/3 cup only.
Seems like the decor, bathrooms and overall atmosphere needs significant updating.

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S
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on November 29, 2018
Overall 3Food 5Service 3Ambience 4

Food was outstanding. Service was ok -- our waitress was new so it is probably not representative.

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DJ
Detroit
3 reviews
Dined on November 23, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Great food and service and energy. Highly recommend reservations on Saturday and Sunday for brunch or breakfast

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NM
New York Area
1 review
Dined on November 17, 2018
Overall 2Food 1Service 1Ambience 3

The service was terrible. My friend ordered her steak well done and it came rare. She returned it and it came back rare again. They didn't bring any ketchup after many times of asking. One person's meal was served 20 minutes after everyone else's. Terrible service and just average food. Also this is the second time I went because I wanted to give it another chance. First time I went service was terrible too and took almost an hour to get our food. Never going back.

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JC
San Diego
1 review
Dined on November 10, 2018
Overall 4Food 5Service 4Ambience 2

Terrific drinks, appetizers, and entrees. The only thing we didn't like was the seating arrangement. They have tables so close together you feel you're eating with the strangers at the next table, which creates a rather awkward, uncomfortable atmosphere.

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KM
Toronto
3 reviews
Dined on November 4, 2018
Overall 4Food 4Service 1Ambience 3

Food was good. Service was very poor. Food and beverages took a long time. Once seated it took the waitress a while to even come to our table

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OT
Miami
7 reviews
Dined on November 4, 2018
Overall 4Food 4Service 5Ambience 5

It was a busy Sunday brunch and they honored the time we had reserved. Our waitress always smiled. Just noisy.

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C
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined on November 3, 2018
Overall 1Food 3Service 1Ambience 3

Gave us terrible table in everyone’s route to bathroom so people had to keep shifting chairs. Food sat at a station not heated for a while and was Then cold. Server did not offer to make another. Fish portion for a special was ridiculously small.

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OT
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on November 3, 2018
Overall 1Food 1Service 1Ambience 1

We waited for an hour past our reservation and never got seated and left. It was completely over booked with a lot of angry people .

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on November 2, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Great food and ambiance

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VM
1 review
Dined on November 2, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

I love visiting Cafe Zola. They always have the best meals no matter what you're in the mood for.

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MR
Detroit
6 reviews
Dined on November 1, 2018
Overall 3Food 5Service 2Ambience 2

The food was great, but on a Thursday night (early) the noise level was through the roof. Hard to hold a conversation.

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SY
Detroit
13 reviews
Dined on November 1, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 4

Had late lunch. Best smoked salmon. Very fresh veggies and salad. Great soup. Very good espresso drinks. Great service.

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d
Detroit
37 reviews
Dined on October 26, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

We had Nicholas and he served all eight of us women and separate bills wonderfully.

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c
Detroit
7 reviews
Dined on October 19, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 3

Service was great. It’s rather cramped & noisy, but it was a Saturday evening & the place was packed. Food is imaginative. I’d call it more Mediterranean than French. I know owner is Turkish & I like experiencing the Turkish dishes. The lamb is always very good. We did small plates giving more of a chance to sample more dishes. We were very satisfied with quality & quantity - every but as much as a very reputable tapa place nearby (Adventura). We were plenty satisfied with 4 small plates for the 2 of us with one plate being a delicious kale salad. We had no room for the great sounding desserts. We always enjoy Cafe Zola as long as we don’t get stuck at the table right near the dining room entrance. They really should eliminate that table because it is so uncomfortable with people bumping into you & costs hanging right in your face. I always say to not sit at that table when I make a reservation. We should thinking about going there more often. It is so much better than their east side restaurant. Plus I’d rather be downtown.

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