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Zafra Kitchen Incorporated
Ranked #97 of 316 Restaurants in Hoboken
Dining options: Dinner, Breakfast
Restaurant details
Dining options: Dinner, Breakfast
Reviewed 15 February 2015

The service was great, the food even better and the prices were reasonable.

It's a BYOB and we brought Merlot to make Sangria. A $10 charge to make the drink. Well worth the price!

Our server gave us three recommendations - shrimp, chicken and a steak dish. We ordered the three choices. Wow. Mouth watering for all of the dishes - so good we had no leftovers.

Strongly recommend.

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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8 - 12 of 38 reviews

Reviewed 20 December 2014 via mobile

This place is byob. Seriously? They have a cocktail menu but don't serve? They couldn't make any dish personalized to our kids' liking because everything is pre-prepared, meaning they just dump the stuff in the fryer ... They must have big freezers.

1  Thank Patrick M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 June 2014 via mobile

Had a wonderful evening at Zafra. Service was excellent food was delicious. Server gave us a few extras to try including a wonderful dipping sauce and marinated olives. I highly recommend that you share appetizers and entrees since you want to try an assortment and all the wonderful different flavors.

Relaxed casual outdoor dining was never rushed with just the right amount of attention from happy staff who were very helpful in food selections.

Thank IGS123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 June 2014

I've passed by Zafra's on several occasions, and am always amazed at how packed the outdoor area is. Seriously - it takes dedication for anyone to WILLINGLY sit outside on Willow Avenue for their food. My compadre happened to have a gift card to this place - not to mention she gave up chain restaurants for Lent - so I happily agreed to try it. And she prefaced that they'd make you sangria in exchange for your own bottle of wine. Sign me up.

I had a good experience at Zafra, but not amazing and unforgettable. I see some of these reviews on here that make Zafra out to be way more upscale and unique than it really is. If you're not originally from Hudson county, I can see why you would think this place is so. But if you're a true resident of Hudson County, don't be fooled. Really.

We were two, and our wait was originally 40 minutes. There was maybe two or three other parties waiting, and every single table was jam-packed. Fortunately, the wait wasn't that long at all. While walking to a local liquor store to pick up wine, we got the call that our table was ready. I realize now why our wait was much shorter, but I'll explain that later.

The place itself, as you may have read, is smaller than small. It's decorated with lush, colorful icons of Latino culture. It's like your Abuelita invited you and your entire family over, and now you're all cramped in her living room eating dinner (sans the soaps on TV).

We were seated at the bar, which I didn't mind.

I noticed we didn't get any bread, which annoyed me. The couple next to us and everyone else got bread. In fact, our service was shotty all night. Different waiters and waitresses took our order, brought us drinks, etc. It feels a little awkward when four people are serving you. But I guess that just goes along with the laid-back vibe of the place.

Scanning the menu, you'll notice lots of different Latino inspired dishes. At first, I thought the prices weren't too bad for Hoboken. 5 and 6 bucks for tapas is pretty standard, and 21 bucks for an entree is alright. But remember how I said the place was small? Fittingly, the portions are JUST AS SMALL. I was completely underwhelmed by the food placed in front of us. I get that 'empanadillas' mean that they'll be smaller, but they were completely miniscule. And you only got two of them. My friend's Ropa Vieja was served in a tiny cup - yes, a cup. You can easily go to Union City and get the same type of food, triple times the portions, all of the same quality and taste, for a fraction of the price. Abuelita would be ashamed.

I can get over the price for the taste - and I did leave full after making a meal of three tapas - but I'm still shocked over what I received for the amount of money I paid.

Then, after we ordered dessert, we were asked to leave. Yep, leave. Two sips into my Venezuelan hot chocolate (which was excellent), one of our many waiters came over and said, and I quote, "Ladies, could you please pay? There are lots of other parties waiting." She was polite about it, but come on, we weren't even there an hour. Now I KNOW you just want our money and then you want us to leave. (Now can you see why OUR wait time was a lot shorter?)

If you're gonna go there, be prepared to cough up all your cash for tiny, but tasty portions. Don't expect any sort of good service, and I'm sure they just don't care. It's nice that they make you sangria.

Try the yuca fries and the authentic quesidilla - both of which were memorably delicious.

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2  Thank Michcella T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 April 2014

This really is a good place to eat in a real Latin / Cuban atmosphere. The owners and staff are really friendly, the choice on the menu limited but not limiting, and the BYOB makes it not hard on the pocket.
I had the Cuban shredded beef as a main, which served with rice and tasty beans was excellent.
Next time in Hoboken I will be back!

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Thank crawfie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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