- the queen Jan 14, 2008 04:50 PM
Located at 75 9th Ave New York, NY
I could eat here every night . When you check in for reservations--a half dozen young girls all dressed in black are behind a long counter. And one will escort you to their nice large bar area, where it’s going to cost you a small fortune for a few drinks...LOL.
The hardest part of a visit to Buddakan is deciding what to eat. The menu has so many good choices that we always seem to over-order by at least one dish. A group of four is perfect because you can taste a wider selection as most dishes are perfect to share. If you're dining as a couple you'll have to make some hard decisions. But you really can't go wrong in our experience. I have been lucky enough to have dined here 4-5 times and sampled probably 15 of their appetizers and entrees. I never had a disappointment. Admittedly, I like Chinese food a lot. I would say that even in Hong Kong Buddakan would be considered a top restaurant. On my most recent visit around Thanksgiving week our waiter advised us to try some kind of pumpkin dumpling special he said had been very popular ...wow was that great. The things that will keep me coming back is the food always seems to arrive hot, straight from the kitchen as Asian food should; the service is super, the atmosphere is beyond belief, and the restaurant really succeeds on the details: the jasmine tea is excellent, the rice is top quality (if you think all rice is the same, try a few chopsticks of plain white rice at Buddakan - it must be high grade Thai rice) I always seem to have one of the BEST meals ever. The edamame dumplings are to die for, as are the rock shrimp & the sliced beef .I highly recommended the Taro Puffs. Two entrees to share, sweet and crispy shrimp were great as well as the sizzling short rib. As were the chow fun noodles. I highly this wonderful restaurant and as i said before I recommend the edamame dumplings it will knock your socks off, and the sauce is heavenly. Their great food as well as their very courteous and attentive wait staff will make you want to return often.. Don’t forget your Credit card.
I'm glad to read such an enthusiastic review of this place. While some of your claims tend toward hyperbole (e.g., this would be a top restaurant in HK), I had a similar experience when I went--prompt seating, attentive staff, enjoyed the food. Totally agree about the edamame dumplings; I could eat an entire meal of them.
Aside from the obvious issues like cost and crowd, the only thing I'd caution against about Buddakan is that there are "traditional" Chinese dishes (like ma po tofu) on the menu that aren't any better than your neighborhood delivery place's, but cost $15. Skip them and order the more ambitious items exclusively.
i thought buddakon was decent. the edemame dumpings were the grossest things i had ever tasted. the aftertaste was pretty bad. I had the szechuan steak for dinenr which was OK. the highlight was the dessert -- the mille feuille was seriously the best dessert ever. layers of chocolate creme brulled bananas cake and chocolate mousse, with spiced chocolate ice cream on the side. I probably wouldnt come here again, I prefer Tao or Budda Bar.
Interesting. Looks like we're split here. I like Tao (admittedly because I never pay, though) but find Budda Bar a poor excuse for a restaurant. They were rolling tables through the dining room during dinner. The sushi was old--almost rancid. (This is Budda Bar I'm talking about.)
But I loved the edamame dumplings at Buddakan. Hmmm.
I have been to all three restaurants: Buddakhan, Buddah Bar and Tao. All three are "see and be seen" trendy places so the food is secondary to the trendy atmosphere. They all have good, strong drinks but when it comes to the food it is just okay. Each one has a few good dishes but overall, you go to these places more for the experience than for the actual food. If you go in with lower expectations, you won't be disappointed.