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“Happy Hour!”
Review of Zona 78 - CLOSED

Zona 78
Price range: $9 - $30
Cuisines: Italian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children
Dining options: Late Night, Outdoor Seating, Reservations
Description: Zona 78 is Tucson’s premiere destination for artisan pizza, Italian specialties, and an eclectic selection of wines, spirits, and beers. We offer a little of everything at Zona 78: wine tastings, Tucson’s best happy hour and service that goes the extra mile. It’s no wonder Zona 78 is one of Tucson’s favorite restaurants. We are proud to tell you that Zona 78 has been voted Tucson’s Best Casual Dining restaurant, Best Family Dining restaurant and Tucson’s Best Happy Hour. “Life is Good” at Zona 78!
Marina, California
Level Contributor
98 reviews
32 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 149 helpful votes
“Happy Hour!”
Reviewed April 14, 2008

I've never eaten off the regular men, but have been to the happy hour twice now, and it's absolutely the best happy hour in the city. Cheese plates, mini wood-fired pizzas and brushetta sandwiches for about $5 and heavily discounted drinks. Also, the happy hour runs Saturday as well.
The food is excellent, the service is excellent, they have a spectacular patio, and the interior atmosphere is wonderful. They also have good beer on draft and an excellent wine selection. The only downside is the location. Although they've recently opened another location on the northeast side of the city on Tanque Verde near Sabino Canyon Road, they're a little far out for those of us living in town, especially when trying to make the happy hour, which ends at 6. Still, this is one of my favorite restaurants in town.

Helpful?
Thank colinaz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

166 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    78
    55
    24
    7
    2
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Tucson, Arizona
Level Contributor
31 reviews
19 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 143 helpful votes
“Great Italian food, long wait, good service.”
Reviewed April 12, 2008

We just got back from our first visit to Zona78 on Tanque Verde and we are very happy with the experience. We are a family of 6 and called ahead to get on the "reserve" list, which really just buys you a few minutes when you get there. We were told it would be 15-20 minutes and it was 50 minutes! That was too bad as we had an elderly person with us who began to have vertigo from standing after about 1/2 hour and needed to sit down. The other patrons gave up their seats on the waiting bench so he could sit. The hostess offered to bring over a chair but we were fine and continued to wait. We were eventually seated at a corner, round table surrounded with bench seats. It was comfortable, private and quieter than the rest of the room and we were very happy.
We were visited immediately by our waitress, who seemed to always be there when we needed something but didn't hover, very nice.
The food was excellent. Four of us ordered pizzas, two soup, one a salad, and one appetizer as well as a pasta dish and the trout. There were no complaints, only exclamations of how delicious everything was. The Calamari appetizer was nice, different from the ordinary fried version. Sauteed with tasty tomatoes and a spicy, creamy tomato sauce that everyone dipped their bread into.
The Tomato-Basil soup lacked spice and seasoning and one of us ordered shredded cheese to put into it but it still needed salt.
The pizzas were great, they tasted brick-oven baked and toppings were generous. They are dinner-plate-sized and were too big for two of us.
The pasta came in a huge bowl and is at least two meals. Half was boxed up to take home.
I ate the trout and I ate it all, even though I got full about 3/4 of the way through. It was the best meal I've had at a restaurant in a very long time. They served it with greenbeans with bacon and asparagus, which was a substitute for fingerling potatoes. Being a carb-conscious consumer, I was happy for the easy substitution. The fish was perfectly cooked with crispy skin, sitting in a pool of olive oil and covered by the veggies and LOTS of bacon. A low carb eater can't be any happier to see that dish! Delicious!
Wine was affordable at $7 per glass.
Kids meals are $5 but few choices available (there are pizzas, though).
I would go back to this restaurant.
Be prepared to wait. Prices reasonable. Good Service. Great food.
The East Side needs more restaurants of this caliber.

Helpful?
Thank mikendomsmum
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tucson, Arizona
Level Contributor
28 reviews
19 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
“Tanque Verde Zona 78”
Reviewed March 21, 2008

Newly opened on Tanque Verde, and our first visit. The down side is very busy, and noisy.

Excellent food, the equal of any in Tucson, and the staff was professional. We will be back, but next time we'll try to time it when they aren't quite so busy.

But the food sure was good. The dinner salad, bread, entrees, all were excellent. This place is a winner, and we were impressed.

Helpful?
2 Thank TucsonRLS
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Arizona
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Real attention to food, great atmosphere”
Reviewed January 26, 2008

Zona is rare for a Tucson restaurant: they emphasize excellent ingredients (such as fresh locally grown vegetables!), yet they are not pretentious, they have low prices, and good service. And the River
road restaurant has a nice ambiance.

The cedar planked salmon is terrific as are pastas, salads, and pizzas.

The servers are young but they are well trained and enthusiastic, not too clingy but attentive. Obviously they have learned that the diners'
experience matters (which is not true at many Tucson restaurants, including some of the really high-end ones).

The wine selection is original and has numerous good choices, both domestic and foriegn.

The prices are great overall.

Most places in Tucson with this level of food are high-priced and located in resorts. Zona is informal: great for kids or larger parties
or for a quick stop after shopping or work but has enough atmosphere for a long meal with a good friend.

One expects this kind of restaurant in the Bay area where diners are all so discriminating. It's a rare gem in Tucson!

Helpful?
3 Thank DarwinArizona
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor reviewer on Facebook
“Had a great pizza the one time I visited”
Reviewed December 3, 2007

Had a great pizza the one time I visited

Helpful?
1 Thank A TripAdvisor reviewer on Facebook
This review is the subjective opinion of an individual contributor and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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