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“Best cheese steak in Philly? Here, and it's a sushi roll”
Review of Zama

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Ranked #204 of 4,691 Restaurants in Philadelphia
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$21 - US$30
Cuisines: Japanese, Bar
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Bar scene
Dining options: Reservations
Dining style: Casual Dining
Neighborhood: City Center West
Cross street: Moravian
Reviewed 4 April 2018


Highly recommended for all the slightly more conventional sushi items, but the chefs here definitely know how to play with their food.

The roll I speak of had hot, freshly cooked beef (you even get the famous choice of "wit or witout"--we went wit) and grilled onions embedded in rice and then wrapped in a beancurd wrapper flecked with red pepper flakes. What a daring, delicious homage to Philadelphia!

We were also especially taken with the Bron Sizzle roll. 'Bron' in this case is a misspelled reference to branzino, the fish, slices of which were the raw topping on a great roll that, IIRC, was finished with a tart ponzu sauce. Just loved it.

Everything delivered to the tables either side of us looked as droolworthy as the food we ate. Was just sorry we didn't have enough appetite to try more of this highly creative food.

Located right off Rittenhouse Square.

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Thank UnrepentantFoodie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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5 - 9 of 158 reviews

Reviewed 3 April 2018

I spent a week in Philadelphia and decided to thank my host by taking him for a meal to Zama where he had been previously. I went for the $55 taster menu.

The food was beautiful and well presented but I unfortunately came away feeling hungry after several small dishes. I even paid extra for another dessert but it made no difference.

The staff were lovely and we were served by a nice young Australian fellow.

I was 15 minutes early for my table and was asked to reamin standing at the door. I initially thought it was because my table still had people on it. When we got to the table, I discovered that there were only three tables occupied. It's not a nice experience standing at the door for 15 minutes!

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Thank 709,913
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 7 March 2018

While service was amicable and dishes were flavorful, value for money was atrocious and space design left a lot to be desired. Sushi rolls were deplorably small (albeit regularly fresh), and my boyfriend and I left hungry, with a $200+ bill burning a hole in our stomachs (2 appetizers, 2 rolls, 4 drinks total). We rolled straight to another restaurant thereafter. Being from NYC and dining out regularly, I'm not against paying for value, but this restaurant was a huge mistake for a special occasion. If you're here for a business lunch, go hard. But if you want a meaningful, filling meal for your money, go anywhere else. Maybe Zama had its good reviews years ago when it first opened, but it's game over for this restaurant in a modern city unless they make some legitimate upgrades to foodie deliverables.

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Thank lhy04001
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 18 February 2018 via mobile

We booked dinner at Zama based on a recommendation from one of our most discriminating foodie friends. We have never thought sushi as a food category could be as artisanal and creative as these people saying menus proved: we ordered one at $55 and one at $100 to sample tastes and bites at the two ends of the Zama dinner spectrum. Rob our server played starring role of sushi Sherpa, helping us along the 2.5 hour journey of identifying ingredients, nuances, and flavors. What a glorious meal and experience!

Thank BotticelliDiva
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 22 January 2018

I.love Restaurant Week! I get to hang out with friends and try new places at a reduced rate.
My friend and I met for lunch at Zama. I arrived first. The hostess checked my Open Table reservation and seated me immediately.
Our server was very attentive.
After a few minutes, my friend arrived and we began to look over the special Restaurant Week menu.
We started with a shared bowl of edamame. The warm pods were seasoned delicately.
My miso soup was delicious. Next, there was a refreshing salad of frisee and some other greens enhanced by a light dressing.
My main dish was a ribeye steak stir fry which included several juicy, tender strips of steak and a generous amount of sauteed onions and red and yellow peppers on a bed of rice. (Too bad it wasn't brown rice.)
Dessert was fantastic -- a small but nonetheless satisfying serving of apple crisp.
I would definitely go back to Zama, but I would not want to sit at the tiny table my friend and I had. There was no place to hand our coats and nowhere to place our handbags, and the seat cushions seemed a bit thinner than the cushions at the booths.

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Thank Lu F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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