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As a 3 year Angeleno, I try to defend our fine city and its restaurant patrons from the LA bashing that generalizes our town is all about style over substance....clique over community. And then I find a place which may prove them all right...that encapsulates all that can be improved in our fine ciudad....Buddha's Belly.

Miserable. And this is even after giving credit where credit is due....a nice ambience in a category dominated by dollar store decor and 'B' health ratings. Food that comes off as healthy, rather than oil soaked. However, at the end of the day, the food is horrific, I mean insulting. The 'Green Curry' is a sloppy soup of blandness, as equally disappointing as the 2 other dishes I've had there and forgotten or gone into denial. And yet both locations stay hopping by some mystery of voodoo, celebrity marketing, or Daily Candy bribery.

I don't mean to react so violently, but I feel like it's my responsibility to protect you from this, like a trusty watch dog loyally presiding over his homestead, or George Bush Sr. from having Wubya take his own SAT exams.

Chowhounders....We are Los Angeles' last hope! To speak the the truth where the morons on Citysearch and the naive on Yelp fail miserably. It's not just our passion, its our duty!

Friends of Chowhound....Please join me in blackballing Buddha's Belly!!

(I'm El Jefe, and I endorse this message)

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  1. El Jeffe has been temporarily been 'brain cramped' by atrocious chow.
    The locations and menu of this establishment can be viewed here: http://www.bbfood.com/

    I think it is more evidence that marketing degrees are granted by Satan. They seem to attract people who can be brainwashed into trying to sell ANYTHING and EVERYTHING to fellow morons between 18 to 35 years old. Just my opinion, mind you.

    TIA for further reports.

    1. Trust me, this place is no worse than Crustacean.

      Put side-by-side, Crustacean makes Buddha's Belly look like the French Laundry.

      3 Replies
      1. re: ipsedixit

        Hehehe y'all are hilarious. Second ipsedixit.

        1. re: ipsedixit

          ipse, as a regular poster here, I'm suprised you'd even been here. When would you ever have had occasion to go to this place if it's so mediocre? I live just a few blocks away (on the other side of Fairfax), but after all the things I've read about BB over the years I can't imagine ever wasting my time and money there.

          Mr Taster

          1. re: Mr Taster

            I have friends that work at the CBS Studio lot down the street.

            I go, I don't pay, I don't eat much, and I don't complain. Sometimes friendship is worth more than good chow. Rare, but it happens.

        2. Well, I don't think too many hounds have ever recommended this place. I find it acceptable if someone else wants to go there, but no better than acceptable. Even Mao's Kitchen is usually better. How about that new fancyish Thai place nearby on Beverly, is it any good? In general this area is a wasteland for anything Asian-influenced.

          1. I'd rather eat at Buddha's Belly than Mr. Chow anyday, for a quarter of the price.

            1. Who recommended this to you? The menu looks like an Asian mash-up nightmare. Unfortunately, this faux-Chinese junk is usually what happens when you go west of La Brea

              1. not to defend this place as i am in extreme close proximity to it and yet hardly ever go there, it is way better now than it was when it first opened. i used to get dragged there kicking and screaming until i saw much improvement. i do think their sake is the worst quality i've ever had. i do remember liking their miso eggplant, but i haven't had it in maybe 2 years. my favorite dish there- not sure if it's still on the menu but i hope so- is the terriyaki salmon. that was good for what it was.

                1. I've never been to Buddha's Belly but I'm not surprised at your shock considering Pink's is just up the street and I have yet to figure out why people wait in line to eat THAT junk. Thanks for the passionate warning about this place... I'll have to cross that off of my To-Do list.

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: mrshankly

                    Hi MrShankley: Pinks may be "junk" , but its thrived in the same location for 65 freakin' years. If and when Buddha's Belly celebrates that distinction six decades into the future, it can be dissed in the same sentence as Pinks ;-)

                    1. re: silence9

                      good point... my apologies for referring to it as junk. although I'm still perplexed as to why one would wait in those hellacious lines for a rather bland hot dog.

                      1. re: mrshankly

                        Hi again... No worries. I was a big Pinks supporter, till Fab's Dog's opened up in Reseda. Better quality dog and better quality toppings at Fabs, lots of selection and combos, yet more streamlined menu at Fabs. Quicker service at Fabs too, though waiting for their Ripper and Cremator will be the longest 6 minutes one ever clocks :-).

                        1. re: silence9

                          I'm with you on Fab's... that drive to Tampa Blvd is getting shorter and shorter with each trip. I wonder if you can order up the ripper on the phone before you arrive and forego the torturous 6 minutes when you get there:)

                  2. I think it speaks volumes that on any given weekend night, all up and down Beverly will be restaurants filled to the hilt.... and Buddha's Belly will be empty.

                    1. I tried it once. That was enough. Truly bad food. I remember thinking who ever ran the kitchen had no concept of what good flavor and texture are.

                      1. I understand your disappointment, but there are a few items worth getting. Thai beef salad, ginger fried rice, and the tom yum ( I get all without shrimp if they have it in the dish). In fact, I crave the ginger fried rice. So if you have to go, stick to that for sure. I find it beats bland Mao's Kitchen any day.. oh also, the SHAO BING!! please give it a try....

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: betamax

                          Do you just not like shrimp or is the shrimp horrid at Buddah's Belly?

                          1. re: ElsieDee

                            I just don't like shrimp. If there is chicken I don't usually get that either because they are big chunks. Big chunks are never seasoned enough.

                        2. It's located in a neighborhood where people land when they first move here to make it in Hollywood.

                          These people are from places across the U.S., many of which have even worse Asian food than that served up by BB.

                          They don't go in for "ethnic food" all that much, esp. "the spice".

                          Many are on strict diets to look thin so don't really go to restaurants for the food.

                          It's never crowded.

                          So, like Pink's, McDonald's, El Cholo, El Coyote, etc. it's consistent(ly blah or just bad) but fills a niche.

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: cant talk...eating

                            Right, ALL the restaurants in this neighborhood suck - Angelini Osteria, Hatfields, Grace, BLD, Ita-Cho, Terroni...

                            Right, like the people who eat at these places are a bunch of hayseeds who don't know their a$$ from their elbow!

                            Get real!

                            1. re: Slivery

                              Huh? I lived in that neighborhood for years, and am referring to the restaurant on this thread. Pink's and the late Eat-a-Pita are also in the neighborhood. This isn't to take anything away from those places you've mentioned, which are among my favorites, believe me! - I'm not saying people are hayseeds, dumb or anything else. People go to all sorts of places for all sorts of reasons, including to eat a bland, pseudo-Asian meal with easy parking...