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“Good food, bad location, terrible restrooms”
Review of Saffron

Ranked #102 of 1,806 Restaurants in Minneapolis
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $10 - $40
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Dinner, Late Night, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Dining
Cross street: 1st Avenue & 3rd Street
Transit: If you are taking the light rail to downtown Minneapolis, we are only 2 blocks away from the last stop at first Ave.
Level Contributor
335 reviews
177 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 113 helpful votes
“Good food, bad location, terrible restrooms”
Reviewed March 4, 2014 via mobile

Saffron advertises itself both as a restaurant and a lounge. It's definitely more of a restaurant. The food menu is somewhat limited given the famous chef who runs the place but their food is very good and interesting. Cocktails are great but pricy and the lounge atmosphere is nowhere to be found. A nice detail that the place is not very loud, and the patrons are very polite, mostly young and very nice. Service is very good and quick. This is not a place where you will run into drunks who can't stand/talk/walk so you can actually really enjoy food. The location if this place is not good. It's tucked away in a part of downtown with very little pedestrian traffic next to a highway exit. The space they use simply doesn't suit them and it ruins the atmosphere to a degree. The restrooms are awful (at least the ones for men are) and that's a shame. Nothing can spoil a nice dinner as a nasty restroom.
They need to redo their image. Find a better and livelier location, expand the menu, sort out those nasty restrooms.

1 Thank stric75
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SaffronMinneapolis, Manager at Saffron, responded to this review, June 14, 2014
Thanks for the generous feedback! This is all great food for thought.

Thanks for dining with us and for taking the time to leave such a detailed review!
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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188 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • English first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
8 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Great place...great food”
Reviewed February 21, 2014

We had the best waitress ever - Clare sp?? The chef checked on our meal and we had a show to attend and they made sure we'd leave in time.

EVERYTHING was perfect, amazing flavors, just a celebration of good atmosphere and food to perfection.

Visited February 2014
1 Thank TimB087
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Columbus, Ohio
Level Contributor
50 reviews
34 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
“Rude and slow service; do not recommend”
Reviewed January 19, 2014 via mobile

We were visiting our friends in MN and they booked a special night out on the town for us. Upon arriving to Saffron, the decor and ambiance was nice. It wasn't overly crowded; not a lively place by any means. Our friends had made us Sat night reservations weeks in advance but we still had to wait 35 minutes for a table. Bad start.

We went to the bar to order a round of drinks and our first encounter with a bad attitude was the bartender. We asked him to recommend drinks off the menu and he looked like we insulted him. Big ego!! My husband made up his own simple to execute vodka-soda drink and had to ask for an extra shot of vodka (which we were fully charged for) because the bartender barely put any booze in the drink.

When we were finally seated, our waiter took forever to come around. I asked him what was the most popular item on the menu was (since I like to order what the locals like!) and he said "um everything".. Again as if my question was rude?? The rest of the night continued like this. SLOWEST & RUDEST SERVICE EVER!!!!

The appetizers were the best part of the meal.. And the beef and lamb dishes that the guys ordered were decent. The special dish (can't remember the name) was disgusting.

For the cost of this place, the service has to improve. I felt bad that my friends were embarrassed that we all were treated so poorly. Obviously it was bad enough for me to write this review five months after my visit!! Still remember how awful the entire experience was!!!

Save your money and go elsewhere. I'm sure there are plenty of better options in Minneapolis.

2 Thank Kenrina
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Broomfield, Colorado
Level Contributor
51 reviews
39 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
“An Event - very relaxing”
Reviewed December 23, 2013

Wide selection of tappas and entrees. Great food and never felt rushed. Very unusual selections and some standard fare. On a Saturday night we spent over 2 hours sampling a variety of tappa dishes. Very relaxing and enoyable evening. Waiter was very knowledgable of menu and bar offerings.

  • Visited December 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1 Thank uihwki
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Willmar, Minnesota
Level Contributor
15 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Go for the tagine, stay for the millefeuille!”
Reviewed December 23, 2013

My wife and I live in out-state Minnesota, so when we are in the mpls-st paul area we like to hit some of the top restaurants and Saffron did not disappoint. First, we had a wonderful and attentive server who answered any questions we had and made some great recommendations. For small plates we ordered the fried cauliflower, as well as the lamb brain. The cauliflower honestly reminded me of buffalo wings (which is a good thing) with a twist. The lamb brain (my choice) was more for curiosity than anything, and while i can say it wasn't bad, it wasn't our favorite either. If you are daring its worth a try! For an entree my wife had the gnocchi - expertly cooked with nice root vegetables and a very flavorful, but not overpowering sauce. I had the duck tagine - the meatballs (4 of them) were good size and just the right density - not too crumbly or dry. These came in a large bowl with a tomato sauce, chickpeas, egg yolk (which you mix in right when you get it) and preserved lemon. I loved how the flavors came together, especially the lemon. I don't believe i had had preserved lemon before which is, after a little research (thanks wikipedia), a common north african condiment. We were both pretty full at that point, but had to try a dessert. Our waiter recommended the millefeuille (mill-fwee), and it was outstanding. Probably one of my favorite desserts ever. It's not really big (so if you are looking for a big dessert, its not your choice). The entire dish stood out, but we especially loved the spicy, sea salt caramel ice cream. The millefeuille is a layered dessert with cake, phyllo, sour cherry, and caramel pudding. It hits all the senses - salty, crunchy, sweet, sour. A wonderful way to end the meal. Thanks for a great experience saffron!

  • Visited December 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1 Thank Marc0223
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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