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Zella - 8 Reviews - 1983 N Clybourn Ave, Chicago, IL - Bars, Pubs & Clubs Reviews - Phone (773) 549-2910


1983 N Clybourn Ave (at Racine Avenue)
Chicago, IL 60614
(773) 549-2910
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Zella - Chicago, IL
Zella - Chicago, IL


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I visit Chicago regularly with my guy. On this particular evening, he was attending a formal work event so I decided to brave Chicago on my own before meeting up with him later fo...


Being from the area, I have been to this place many times and have thoroughly enjoyed it. Their outdoor patio always provides for a tremendous ambiance. I was there yesterday with...

Horrible Food, Horrible Atmosphere 9/14/2012

by wmb at Menuism Provided by Menuism
Went to Zella last week and had the strip steak sandwich. It was cold in the center and really fatty and... more

Editorial review from Citysearch 9/14/2012

I officially have had something happen here that has never happened to me anywhere else in the world. I used to love this place but tonight during the Bears game at around 8pm I yelled G dammit frustrated at a penalty. Let me also say there was plenty of yelling going throughout the bar. Some guy who was sitting with another guy and two kids said watch your mouth in a tough guy tone. I said, ""Hey you're the one bringing your kids to a bar for the game but I'll keep it down."" The guy gets up and as he does his friend says it's his bar and gets in my face and gets real tough. He said, ""I'm not asking you, I'm telling you or you can leave."" I said, ""No problem, I'll leave,"" because I don't want to spend money were the owner acts like that and I never will go there again. I got up, paid my bill and left. I'll make sure no one else I know goes there either. There are a thousand ways an owner of a bar could have handled that and this guy chose the worst one. If you're trying to protect your kids from supposed profanity and I would bet most people would say that G dammit is not profanity then you don't have kids in a bar during a Thursday night game. This situation could have gotten much worse than it did. If his friend didn't say it's his bar then the situation would have gotten real ugly, real fast and those kids would have heard and seen a lot worse than they did. I know how to handle myself when threatened but at the same time I use my head and won't escalate if there is a greater risk. If this supposed owner took this action against some hot head with a knife or worse what would happen then. Think it's ridiculous? Well factor this in, I wasn't carded and neither was anyone I was with, which was a total of four other people so someone would have no problem getting something dangerous in. The tough guy owner goes and talks to and stands next to his bouncer after he confronted me but again if his friend had not said what he said or if it was someone else those kids could have gotten hurt because of there proximity to the situation. Point is people get wrapped up in sports and say things in public places. It's not the right thing to do but having been a bouncer myself I can tell you that pulling someone aside and asking them in a reasonable manner to watch what they say because there are kids around will go a lot smoother. Obviously your security nor anyone else thought it was an issue because no one else got involved. Also, my friends who I told to stay because I didn't want them to have to leave because of me said that after I left people were using real profanity and yelling but nothing was done. Do not go here, it is dangerous, they apparently don't card and the owner physically threatens his customers. I also had their food for the first time and it was pretty bad. Buffalo chicken wrap was terrible and skirt steak sandwich was fatty and tough. If I was the owner I would respond to this post to settle the matter either way. more

Editorial review from Citysearch 9/14/2012

Bar owner(s) allows staff to smoke at front door entrance with doors open filling bar with smoke. I don't care if the staff are smokers. That's fine. Light one up, take a break but move away from the entrance, off to the side. The owner or manager was standing right next to them as they were smoking at the front door and the bar began to smell of smoke. Very unprofessional. more

Horrible Food, Horrible Atmosphere 9/14/2012

wmb Provided by Partner
Went to Zella last week and had the strip steak sandwich. It was cold in the center and really fatty and full of gristle. I didn't complain to the ... more


STAY AWAY UNLESS YOU WANT TO GET RIPPED OFF! I was there a few weeks ago and gave my credit card for a $50 tab and tipped $10 but left both (merchant + customer) copies on the table. I checked my credit card statement and instead of $60 being charged, they charged me $110. Visa is looking into retaining a copy of the receipt, but we assume they pitched the one I added $10 tip to and used the other one to write in their own tip. I called the manager and told him about this and he said, ""sorry, claim it with Visa and good luck honey"". We'll see how long this takes Visa to clear up, if then can more

Penny Pinchers 7/26/2011

Being from the area, I have been to this place many times and have thoroughly enjoyed it. Their outdoor patio always provides for a tremendous ambiance. I was there yesterday with some people, and we had a good time. A lot of the items were half price and out of the four of us we ended up spending 80 each. We split our bills, so we each got a bill of about 20. I though the server was great and left her a 25% tip. As we were leaving, the manager approaches up and says is everything okay? We said that everything was amazing. He said the server was kind of upset that you did not tip her well. We said we gave a 25% tip. He said she just just started working and it was her second stint. The manager literally told us to tip more as he said that out bill should have been like $150 if it wasn't for the special. Last time I checked, I wasn't suppose to tip to the price of the stuff that was the original price. I will repeat that he said that if you don't mind could you give more money. I ended up complying with his request very begrudgingly. At the end of the day I tipped $10 on a $19 bill. more

Dangerous and Rude 1/2/2010

DO NOT GO THERE! I attended a New Years Eve party there and the party itself was alright, mostly due to the people I was there with. The deal was $100 for heavy appetizers, top shelf drinks and a midnight champagne toast. The bartenders made weak drinks, as commented on by all in our group. There was no champagne available for our group at any point in the night, and the 'heavy appetizers' sat out all night getting stale and cold. Also, the promotion that was supposed to go until 1:30 ended at 1:00, turning to a cash bar. Then they kicked everyone out into the zero degree weather to find their own cabs as none came by instead of calling a few companies to alert them to the large amount of people leaving around 2. Worst of all is that when I called to speak to a manager and explain that after spending 45 minutes trying to find a cab, after an hour of being back at our hotel I still could not feel my toes, I WAS HUNG UP ON! TWICE!!!! That was the poorest and most inappropriate service I have ever experienced from any establishment. Pros: DJ Cons: Staff more

RATS...SICK...and RUDE 5/25/2009

I went there the other night and was sitting on the patio with a bunch of people when a R@T ran under our table and over 3 of our feet (all were wearing sandals). It was disgusting. That was followed by two smaller (probably babies) r@ts. We all almost threw up. We promptly told our waitress and how we wanted our check cause we were leaving and she gave us a hard time saying ""oh, its only a r@t, quit being babies...its not the last r@t you'll see out here."" And it wasn't the first I have seen on the Zella patio either. Needless to say, we left a tip, but not as generous as we could have left...and I, nor any of the people we were there with will NEVER go back. DISGUSTING and not friendly! Pros: NOTHING Cons: Pretty much everything more

Fabulous, all-encompassing bar/restaurant experience! The BEST!!! 7/18/2008

I visit Chicago regularly with my guy. On this particular evening, he was attending a formal work event so I decided to brave Chicago on my own before meeting up with him later for some clubbing. Least to say, I was innapropriately dressed! Funky and fabulous tiny dress! I came running in from the downpour and promptly found a seat a bar, the most desired location for a single gal, since the conversation is built in. The female bartender was prompt and sweet despite the crowds. I was a little self conscious about over dressing in this casual bar but no one seemed to mind. In fact guys and girls alike were friendly and conversational the entire evening. I ordered the crab cakes appetizer which was great and plated well. The cocktails were mixed to perfection. It was nice that the back patio was open to smokers, who were huddled around the big tree in back. A wonderful summer evening at an exceptionally friendly bar. Can't wait to go back and bring my guy to meet more Chicago friends! Pros: Slightly romantic ambience, friendly patrons and staff Cons: NONE!!! :) more

A nice place, but not THAT nice. The description pumps the blonde wood...keep that in mind. 5/23/2007

Outdoor area is very nice. Cute young crowd, nice location. Upscale American menu? grilled kabobs and fried calamari is not very upscale - guacamole is pretty good though. And $6 for a bottle of Corona? I'm not cheap, but not stupid either. Order a martini and the bartender gets a little flustered... Pros: ambience, outdoor patio Cons: value more
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Menu for Zella

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  • In Short
    Blond wood, high ceilings, exposed brick walls and a fireplace give this hangout a cozy vibe. Young professionals from the neighborhood toss back beers and dine at tables in the...

  • 3/7/2006 Provided by Citysearch

Additional information

  • Hours:

    Tue-Fri 5pm-2am Sat 5pm-3am
  • Payments:

    Master Card, Visa, American Express
  • Neighborhoods:

    DePaul, North Side