Zeno Cafe

★★★☆☆
3.2857 21
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meh

1
★★★☆☆

meh

Pros: $10 gets you pretty drunk

Cons: meh

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I went to Zeno Cafe with a couple of friends after dinner on a Sunday. We looked at the desserts in the rotating display and took a seat. The waiter at first was a little chilly but quickly warmed up. I ordered lava cake, my friends ordered the red velvet cake and a turtle cake.

As I dug into my cake, I realized it was dry and a little tough. It tasted like unsweetened cocoa powder dusty and flavoless. The "lava" tasted like overly sweet dark cocoa syrup, the kind you pour onto ice cream. A weird combo of bland and shockingly sweet. The others tasted bad as well, a lot of the refrigerated/freezer taste to them. We asked the waiter if the desserts were made in house or bought in and of course they were bought in twice a week.

I think it's weird for a cafe that bills itself as a place to get dessert to not make the desserts either in house or at the very least get well made desserts, esp for charging around $8 per giant serving of dessert. The lava cake at Chino Latino is superior to Zeno's.

1
★★☆☆☆

I went to Zeno Cafe with a couple of friends after dinner on a Sunday. We looked at the desserts in the rotating display and took a seat. The waiter at first was a little chilly but quickly warmed up. I ordered lava cake, my friends ordered the red velvet cake and a turtle cake.

As I dug into my cake, I realized it was dry and a little tough. It tasted like unsweetened cocoa powder dusty and flavoless. The "lava" tasted like overly sweet dark cocoa syrup, the kind you pour onto ice cream. A weird combo of bland and shockingly sweet. The others tasted bad as well, a lot of the refrigerated/freezer taste to them. We asked the waiter if the desserts were made in house or bought in and of course they were bought in twice a week.

I think it's weird for a cafe that bills itself as a place to get dessert to not make the desserts either in house or at the very least get well made desserts, esp for charging around $8 per giant serving of dessert. The lava cake at Chino Latino is superior to Zeno's.

Pros: honest server

Cons: desserts

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Wow. WTF Zeno? My sisters, Mom and myself wandered in here after a movie for some birthday cake. We're pretty quiet and friendly people. The host was nice, but our server was quite possibly insane or on something. He was particularly mean to my Mom. It was very, very strange. We were able to find the humor in the experience, but I don't think I'll be going back there unless I want to feel like I'm in the Twilight Zone or have a communicable disease. I attempted to reach the manager via phone and email with no repsonse at all. Not impressed.

1
★★☆☆☆

Wow. WTF Zeno? My sisters, Mom and myself wandered in here after a movie for some birthday cake. We're pretty quiet and friendly people. The host was nice, but our server was quite possibly insane or on something. He was particularly mean to my Mom. It was very, very strange. We were able to find the humor in the experience, but I don't think I'll be going back there unless I want to feel like I'm in the Twilight Zone or have a communicable disease. I attempted to reach the manager via phone and email with no repsonse at all. Not impressed.

Pros: great desserts

Cons: attitude of waitstaff, felt humiliated!

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I went to Zeno for the first time this weekend, and was pleasantly surprised. Appetizers and entrees were tasty and filling. I had expected only lame-o appetizers, but they had options that were plenty filling. My friend and I both had a variation of mac & cheese which was quite good. (You might be saying 'how difficult is that to screw up?' Well, I've had lots of tasteless mac & cheese at places where you'd think it would be fab.) Menu was a bit limited, but expected that. Happy hour specials included bottomless wine and $4 martinis, which I wasn't able to indulge in, but everyone else around us was! And, happy hour didn't end at 5:30pm like so many places.

1
★★★☆☆

I went to Zeno for the first time this weekend, and was pleasantly surprised. Appetizers and entrees were tasty and filling. I had expected only lame-o appetizers, but they had options that were plenty filling. My friend and I both had a variation of mac & cheese which was quite good. (You might be saying 'how difficult is that to screw up?' Well, I've had lots of tasteless mac & cheese at places where you'd think it would be fab.) Menu was a bit limited, but expected that. Happy hour specials included bottomless wine and $4 martinis, which I wasn't able to indulge in, but everyone else around us was! And, happy hour didn't end at 5:30pm like so many places.

Pros: tasty food, more than appetizers, good happy hr specials

Cons: parking/logistics, acoustics

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My friend and I decided to check out their happy hour, and ordered a couple apps and martinis. My martini was mediocre, and our were tasty enough but not amazing. The thing that really irked me was that we ordered two dip type apps and got about enough bread to use up maybe 1/4 of each dip, so I asked for more bread (she brought enough to eat another 1/4 of dip) and they charged us for the "extra" bread (w/o mentioning that it would be extra of course)! I just thought that was completely ridiculous. Service was slow also, overall a mediocre time, the specials were decent but could have gotten better food/drinks elsewhere in Uptown.

1
★★★☆☆

My friend and I decided to check out their happy hour, and ordered a couple apps and martinis. My martini was mediocre, and our were tasty enough but not amazing. The thing that really irked me was that we ordered two dip type apps and got about enough bread to use up maybe 1/4 of each dip, so I asked for more bread (she brought enough to eat another 1/4 of dip) and they charged us for the "extra" bread (w/o mentioning that it would be extra of course)! I just thought that was completely ridiculous. Service was slow also, overall a mediocre time, the specials were decent but could have gotten better food/drinks elsewhere in Uptown.

Pros: decent happy hour

Cons: slow service, food and drinks mediocre

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I went Zeno Cafe on a friday night just for a late night treat. I should have just went to the Dairy Queen down the block and saved myself the drive and the money. The service was just ok. I got ice cream with a brownie and I am telling you if it came from Cub Foods it would have tasted just as good!! My boyfriend got a coffee and it was terrible and cold. I would never go back or recommend it to anyone.

0
★☆☆☆☆

I went Zeno Cafe on a friday night just for a late night treat. I should have just went to the Dairy Queen down the block and saved myself the drive and the money. The service was just ok. I got ice cream with a brownie and I am telling you if it came from Cub Foods it would have tasted just as good!! My boyfriend got a coffee and it was terrible and cold. I would never go back or recommend it to anyone.

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Zeno is just steps from the heart of Uptown and offers a fun place to enjoy drinks and FANTASTIC desserts. Unbelieveable wine menu with a Happy Hour festuring a bottomless glass! Desserts are fun, flavorsful and very satisfying! Service is great, knowledgeable and friendly!

2
★★★★★

Zeno is just steps from the heart of Uptown and offers a fun place to enjoy drinks and FANTASTIC desserts. Unbelieveable wine menu with a Happy Hour festuring a bottomless glass! Desserts are fun, flavorsful and very satisfying! Service is great, knowledgeable and friendly!

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My girlfriends and I went here for a girls evening out for their happy hour- (3-7) on their website it says 3 dollar martinis, but the prices raised to 4 dollars for happy hour, and 8 dollars during regular hours. We got there late, with only about a half hour before happy hour ended, and quickly ordered our first martinis. They were kind of slow in coming, as we hoped to order another before happy hour ended, and our waitress didn't tell us when the last call for happy hour was (at 6:45) but luckily we asked and they let us all order a second martini even though we'd just gotten our first. And they were AMAZING! My favorites were the white mint kiss and the coast 2 coast. The food was also delicious, and if you take advantage of their daily deals you get a great value. I'm definitely going back.

2
★★★★★

My girlfriends and I went here for a girls evening out for their happy hour- (3-7) on their website it says 3 dollar martinis, but the prices raised to 4 dollars for happy hour, and 8 dollars during regular hours. We got there late, with only about a half hour before happy hour ended, and quickly ordered our first martinis. They were kind of slow in coming, as we hoped to order another before happy hour ended, and our waitress didn't tell us when the last call for happy hour was (at 6:45) but luckily we asked and they let us all order a second martini even though we'd just gotten our first. And they were AMAZING! My favorites were the white mint kiss and the coast 2 coast. The food was also delicious, and if you take advantage of their daily deals you get a great value. I'm definitely going back.

Pros: Happy hour!

Cons: kind of slow service

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Dear Reader,

This was easily the most memorable night of my life to date! After a recent engagement announcement, my finace and I wanted to host an engagement party for our college friends in a less "stuffy environment". We wanted to throw a party for a very large group and our first choice venue was, hands down, Zeno Cafe. I have never heard or used the F-word (FABULOUS) so many times in one night! The food was absolutely amazing! The service was friendly, helpful and very personable. We even had little pre-cut desserts served to each of our guests. Definitely the best large-group restaurant experience I have ever had. A very intimate and trendy space for any type of meal for any size group.

I am in LOVE with the Gentlemen's Cosmo, but the Sangri-tini is also delicious!

2
★★★★★

Dear Reader,

This was easily the most memorable night of my life to date! After a recent engagement announcement, my finace and I wanted to host an engagement party for our college friends in a less "stuffy environment". We wanted to throw a party for a very large group and our first choice venue was, hands down, Zeno Cafe. I have never heard or used the F-word (FABULOUS) so many times in one night! The food was absolutely amazing! The service was friendly, helpful and very personable. We even had little pre-cut desserts served to each of our guests. Definitely the best large-group restaurant experience I have ever had. A very intimate and trendy space for any type of meal for any size group.

I am in LOVE with the Gentlemen's Cosmo, but the Sangri-tini is also delicious!

Pros: Fast and friendly service, delicious culinary creations

Cons: Can get crowded if there are lots of people

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What a great time! We were actually recommended to go there by another restaurant. The staff was always on top of everything that we needed. The bartender and manager were extremly friendly and easy to talk to. It was nice to be able to carry on a conversation with your friend and still enjoy the happening atmosphere. The drinks were phenomenal, and the Creme Brulee was to die for!

2
★★★★☆

What a great time! We were actually recommended to go there by another restaurant. The staff was always on top of everything that we needed. The bartender and manager were extremly friendly and easy to talk to. It was nice to be able to carry on a conversation with your friend and still enjoy the happening atmosphere. The drinks were phenomenal, and the Creme Brulee was to die for!

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Zeno has the best desserts and great coffee drinks! Our party tried 4 different desserts and all were phenomenal. I recommend this to anyone who has a sweet tooth.

2
★★★★☆

Zeno has the best desserts and great coffee drinks! Our party tried 4 different desserts and all were phenomenal. I recommend this to anyone who has a sweet tooth.

Pros: Desserts and Coffee

Cons: Small seating area

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By far the WORST wait service I've had in the Twin Cities metro area. Our waiter had two tables of three persons on a non-busy Tuesday eve, so he was not time-challenged. Our main course selections did not arrive together (two of our party had finished their main course when my main course was finally served); a request for a soft drink was forgotten; a request for a side of sour cream was forgotten; the waiter did not clear the table of dirty dishes (appetizer and main course plates sat there through dessert and coffee); desserts did not arrive together (I could see my dessert sitting on the counter waiting to be delivered, and I had to ask for it to be brought to the table); and we had to ask for coffee three times. And as a finale, he forgot to charge us for items, so we were undercharged about $12. Zeno advertises its desserts as a specialty, but the Lava Cake and Cheesecake were ordinary. I did enjoy my white Cosmo martinis, and could be talked into going back for the $3 martini happy hours.

0
★☆☆☆☆

By far the WORST wait service I've had in the Twin Cities metro area. Our waiter had two tables of three persons on a non-busy Tuesday eve, so he was not time-challenged. Our main course selections did not arrive together (two of our party had finished their main course when my main course was finally served); a request for a soft drink was forgotten; a request for a side of sour cream was forgotten; the waiter did not clear the table of dirty dishes (appetizer and main course plates sat there through dessert and coffee); desserts did not arrive together (I could see my dessert sitting on the counter waiting to be delivered, and I had to ask for it to be brought to the table); and we had to ask for coffee three times. And as a finale, he forgot to charge us for items, so we were undercharged about $12. Zeno advertises its desserts as a specialty, but the Lava Cake and Cheesecake were ordinary. I did enjoy my white Cosmo martinis, and could be talked into going back for the $3 martini happy hours.

Pros: $3 martini happy hour

Cons: Too many to list

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Usually when I go to a place that considers themselves a wine bar, they should have a good wine list or at least offer the wines on their list. Everyone understands that wine is where the money is and a 3 or 4 times markup isn't out of the ordinary for restaurants, but 6 times markup is insane. Realize that people do know how much YOU pay for wine and tell sell a $12 bottle of wine for $60 is a bit obsurd. Then when your server opens the wine you should maybe consider training them in on correct wine service. Give the person that ordered the cork, then give a taste, at the very least pour for the lady first. The little things people do notice. Take five minutes with your staff and train them in. The concept is great and their should be more places like Zeno.Justnot Zeno

1
★★☆☆☆

Usually when I go to a place that considers themselves a wine bar, they should have a good wine list or at least offer the wines on their list. Everyone understands that wine is where the money is and a 3 or 4 times markup isn't out of the ordinary for restaurants, but 6 times markup is insane. Realize that people do know how much YOU pay for wine and tell sell a $12 bottle of wine for $60 is a bit obsurd. Then when your server opens the wine you should maybe consider training them in on correct wine service. Give the person that ordered the cork, then give a taste, at the very least pour for the lady first. The little things people do notice. Take five minutes with your staff and train them in. The concept is great and their should be more places like Zeno.Justnot Zeno

Pros: Location, Concept

Cons: Wine List, Server Knowledge, Price

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My first visit to the Zeno in LaSalle Plaza was surprisingly good. Had a grilled panini sandwich that was one of the best I've had downtown. Service was prompt and pleasant, and the food was ready in about 10 minutes. The lunch prices were also very reasonable. I would definitely recommend Zeno for lunch.

2
★★★★☆

My first visit to the Zeno in LaSalle Plaza was surprisingly good. Had a grilled panini sandwich that was one of the best I've had downtown. Service was prompt and pleasant, and the food was ready in about 10 minutes. The lunch prices were also very reasonable. I would definitely recommend Zeno for lunch.

Pros: Food, Service, Price

Cons: Tables too close

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For the stacks of wine they like to display they didn't have what I wanted ... just reisling, nothing out of the ordinary. The bartender offered something similar, I said ok ... he replaced a $7 or $8 glass with a $15 one! I had no idea until I got the bill. The food was average. Nothing to rave about. Tried the dessert on another occasion ...the chocolate caramel something... tasted like a plain brownie. Overpriced for average food. Watch out for the tricky bartender.

1
★★★☆☆

For the stacks of wine they like to display they didn't have what I wanted ... just reisling, nothing out of the ordinary. The bartender offered something similar, I said ok ... he replaced a $7 or $8 glass with a $15 one! I had no idea until I got the bill. The food was average. Nothing to rave about. Tried the dessert on another occasion ...the chocolate caramel something... tasted like a plain brownie. Overpriced for average food. Watch out for the tricky bartender.

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On 11/12/04, my GF and I finally made it over to Zeno and enjoyed the experience. We were seated at the longer "cafeteria-style" tables after a short wait during a busy Friday evening. At first, I was turned off to the tables with which you sit typically sit next to your companion in order to share deserts and conversation; however, it proved to be a fun experience being at the same "table" with other couples as dessert comments were passed around. Service was prompt and we received our drinks and dessert very quickly. The truffle cake was excellent complete with a sampling of different chocolate ingredients. The creme-brulee was even blowtorched right in front of the table -- a surprising feat considering the busy hour and proximity of other tables. The coffee drinks were great. I recommend this for a cozy evening finish.

2
★★★★☆

On 11/12/04, my GF and I finally made it over to Zeno and enjoyed the experience. We were seated at the longer "cafeteria-style" tables after a short wait during a busy Friday evening. At first, I was turned off to the tables with which you sit typically sit next to your companion in order to share deserts and conversation; however, it proved to be a fun experience being at the same "table" with other couples as dessert comments were passed around. Service was prompt and we received our drinks and dessert very quickly. The truffle cake was excellent complete with a sampling of different chocolate ingredients. The creme-brulee was even blowtorched right in front of the table -- a surprising feat considering the busy hour and proximity of other tables. The coffee drinks were great. I recommend this for a cozy evening finish.

Pros: Service, Ambience, Dessert / Drinks

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My friends and I had lunch on a Sunday after seeing a film. The food was hard to choose from, it all looked good. We tried the roasted veggie quesadilla, the apricot chicken salad, the chicken salad sandwhich. The quesadilla was hearty and flavorful, had good sauce. The salad was huge and the apricot dressing was unique and sweet. The chicken salad was ok, nothing too special as far as tase or style goes. The sourdough bread it was served on was dry, but still tasty. For dessert we got the carmel chocolate truffle cake, very rich , creamy and tasy. I needed to order a glass of milk to help savor it.

The service was slow, especially considering the staff to customer ration (numerous people standing behind the counter chatting). The meal prices were reasonable, the desserts are spendy but well worth it.

1
★★★☆☆

My friends and I had lunch on a Sunday after seeing a film. The food was hard to choose from, it all looked good. We tried the roasted veggie quesadilla, the apricot chicken salad, the chicken salad sandwhich. The quesadilla was hearty and flavorful, had good sauce. The salad was huge and the apricot dressing was unique and sweet. The chicken salad was ok, nothing too special as far as tase or style goes. The sourdough bread it was served on was dry, but still tasty. For dessert we got the carmel chocolate truffle cake, very rich , creamy and tasy. I needed to order a glass of milk to help savor it.

The service was slow, especially considering the staff to customer ration (numerous people standing behind the counter chatting). The meal prices were reasonable, the desserts are spendy but well worth it.

Pros: rich dessert, good selection

Cons: , big wine list

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I had an awesome brunch at Zeno this weekend. We went in before a movie to have dessert (raspberry almond dessert was the best thing that I've ever put in my mouth) and decided to have brunch. The food was terrific. The french toast was terrific, but the granola really was "famous". The champagne brunch was worth it!

2
★★★★★

I had an awesome brunch at Zeno this weekend. We went in before a movie to have dessert (raspberry almond dessert was the best thing that I've ever put in my mouth) and decided to have brunch. The food was terrific. The french toast was terrific, but the granola really was "famous". The champagne brunch was worth it!

Pros: environment, service, desserts

Cons: , crowded

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Went to Zeno on a Saturday night for a friends birthday. We expected the seating to be a long wait but it was only about 20 minutes. Our waitress was very friendly and the manager joked around with us as well. Service was prompt for a busy night. We ordered four different desserts, all were good but the chocolate pecan dessert was amazing. Atmosphere was very fun. Great place for the end of a night out.

2
★★★★☆

Went to Zeno on a Saturday night for a friends birthday. We expected the seating to be a long wait but it was only about 20 minutes. Our waitress was very friendly and the manager joked around with us as well. Service was prompt for a busy night. We ordered four different desserts, all were good but the chocolate pecan dessert was amazing. Atmosphere was very fun. Great place for the end of a night out.

Pros: good parking

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I had a wonderful time at this romantic little place. It's perfect for anyone with refined taste in coffee, chocolate, and/or wine. Your server will help you if your a little uncertain what to try, and they'll even bring a french press right to your table--the BEST way to drink coffee! The desserts were to die for. You'll have to go more than once to give them all a try. Next time you're in Uptown, make this joint a part of your night.

2
★★★★★

I had a wonderful time at this romantic little place. It's perfect for anyone with refined taste in coffee, chocolate, and/or wine. Your server will help you if your a little uncertain what to try, and they'll even bring a french press right to your table--the BEST way to drink coffee! The desserts were to die for. You'll have to go more than once to give them all a try. Next time you're in Uptown, make this joint a part of your night.

Pros: Ambience, Quality, Location

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I visited Zeno a few weeks ago on a Saturday night around 8 pm. The layout is extremely confusing and the hostess had no idea where to seat us. That was the first thing. Secondly, the waitress came by and told us what she recommended on her menu, only to find out that when we ordered her recommended items, they were out of not only both of them, but two other things on their menu (for those of you who have not been, they only have approximately 7 desserts TOTAL). The couple next to us arrived after us, were also told their desserts were not available, and when the woman ordered a chai tea latte, was told, albeit politely by the waitress that they didn't have the ingredients for chai and would she mind if they made it with EARL GREY? I will never go back.

0
★☆☆☆☆

I visited Zeno a few weeks ago on a Saturday night around 8 pm. The layout is extremely confusing and the hostess had no idea where to seat us. That was the first thing. Secondly, the waitress came by and told us what she recommended on her menu, only to find out that when we ordered her recommended items, they were out of not only both of them, but two other things on their menu (for those of you who have not been, they only have approximately 7 desserts TOTAL). The couple next to us arrived after us, were also told their desserts were not available, and when the woman ordered a chai tea latte, was told, albeit politely by the waitress that they didn't have the ingredients for chai and would she mind if they made it with EARL GREY? I will never go back.

 

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