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Bambu - North Dallas / Richardson - Incredible New Thai Restaurant!

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My family tried a new Thai restaurant in our neighborhood the other night. It is at the corner of Coit and Campbell hidden behind a Starbucks and a Qdoba. I am so glad we found it. The food and service were both top notch. The menu and daily specials are not just your run of the mill Thai entries either. There are many authentic dishes and they are even off menu items that they will make if you ask. I was with my two young kids so we played it pretty safe so they would eat everything. We tried the dumplings, ribeye/mushroom and ribeye/scallion skewers, clams basil, grilled whole calamari, pad see eew, and the Bambu special (crab) fried rice. The dumplings were not my favorite but my family loved them. The ribeye was seasoned and cooked perfectly. Clams basil had great flavor and was a fun dish. The grilled calamari was a pleasant change from the fried version. It came with two dipping sauces. One sweet and one spicy. Both were very tasty. Pad See Eew was the best I've had in DFW. The tartness of the chinese broccoli really balanced well with the sweet but not too sweet sauce. The Bambu special fried rice, with lump crab meat in it, was awesome. I'd put it up there with Shinsei as the best fried rice I've had in town. BYOB is always a plus too. Definitely give this place a try and tell your friends about it. They are in a tough location and I would really like to see them to succeed.

You can see the menu here:

http://www.bambuasiancuisine.com/

You can see from the early yelp reviews that people are really enjoying it.

http://www.yelp.com/biz/bambu-asian-c...

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Bambu
1930 N Coit Rd #100, Richardson, TX 75080

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  1. Sounds great! I've forwarded your post to friends who live nearby and love anyplace that's BYOB. Especially, Thai.

    1 Reply
    1. re: twinwillow

      My friends went to Bambu tonight on my recommendation based on your review.
      They loved it! Said they had a lot of great fish dishes on the menu and everything was very tasty!
      Thanks for the tip, snatex.

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      Bambu
      1930 N Coit Rd #100, Richardson, TX 75080

    2. Thanks TW!

      I think LewisvilleHounder will really dig this place. Just like Jasmine and Bangkok Orchid they have some interesting authentic Thai dishes on the menu and will surprise with off menu stuff if you request it. LH - Please post your take if you get over there.

      4 Replies
      1. re: snatex

        Snatex,

        Good report I will try to hit it up, but first do you remember what the off menu items consisted of? I' m in the neighborhood all the time as my in-laws live close to there. I have passed by thinking that it was another chain with Americanized fusion fare. This also applied to Secret Recipe when I first saw it.

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        Secret Recipe
        1404 W Hebron Pkwy, Carrollton, TX 75010

        1. re: LewisvilleHounder

          I didn't ask what the off menu items were. It was basically a tasting menu invitation. The menu definitely has some fusion to it but Thai is the main influence. Some of the other specials included - Bamboo Shoot Soup, Whole Garlic Fish, and Grilled Yellowtail Cheekbone.

          1. re: snatex

            My friends had clams and octopus. They said, both were terrific! And, they're VERY picky.

            1. re: snatex

              I went last night based on your recommendation. Love fish and they had a lot of good choices. The Whole Garlic Fish was amazing - tender fish, rich sauce full of flavor. The Yen Ta Fo seafood soup was excellent.

        2. Had a late dinner here last night. Other than the table where everyone was speaking Thai, we had the restaurant all to ourselves. They do not have a Thai-language menu. My companion ordered chicken larb (level 3) and I got the crying tiger beef salad and asked for Thai spicy. The server asked if we would want sticky rice with these, but they had run out for the day (got there about half an hour before closing).

          Larb did a nice job balancing all of the flavors: the zest hits you first, and then the roasted chili and fish sauce flavor notes were apparent but not dominant. The server did not ask about how I want the beef on the crying tiger cooked, so keep that in mind if you order this dish. For my order, it came out lightly seared and rare inside. Dipping sauce had toasted rice which gave it a nutty flavor profile. I was fine with the spice level, but a little disappointed after finding out they would have been willing to go hotter if desired. Both dishes had fresh, crisp vegetables and they had a sharp, zesty citrus flavor that jabs at you, while the heat felt like it built up in layers.

          Now here is something none of the Yelp reviews address (as if that's a surprise...):
          I got a conversation going with the server about the menu and their cultural influence, and I know I am definitely coming to eat here again. I mentioned that the salads seemed different than some Thai restaurants and he said their chef is from Isan, which is the northeastern region of Thailand that has a significant Lao population. He said their foods are not as complex as other regions and their preparation of some central Thai staples can differ. Sticky rice is a staple dish and usually accompanies every meal.

          I asked him about some regional dishes and he said the salads are definitely done differently there because they have a more sour/spicier flavor profile than the Bangkok version. He mentioned a couple others that were on this post (bamboo shoot stew and nem kau).
          http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/3011...
          And we definitely have to convince that chef to make us khao soi - that is a Burmese influenced dish hailing from that area, correct?

          Bottom line, if you are one of those people that doesn't like your Thai food to have overtly sweet notes (as typically found in Central thai places), you'll really like this place. Makes sense why OP was impressed with the pad see ew's balance of flavors.

          And for anyone interested (especially Lewisvillehounder), if you want to research an authentic Isan Thai restaurant within the U.S., I suggest reading about Lotus of Siam in Las Vegas.

          One more useful link:
          http://www.templeofthai.com/cooking/i...

          1 Reply
          1. re: air

            Thanks, air. All good to know.

          2. Ate there tonight. The razor clams and yellowfin collar were both very good. Sally, who I assume is an owner, was a delight.

            Fortunately it is located right around the corner, so I hope to visit again soon.

            1. We ate there last Friday night. We loved the decor and the service was great. We sampled several things on the menu- started with the soft shell crab. Crispy and wonderful, also had the steamed dumpling which was terrific. Entree -table shared the crab fried rice. ( this was one of the best fried rice dishes I have ever had. Also,Pad Thai which was good nothing special, and the Sea Bass with Green Curry. The Sea Bass was outstanding, cooked perfect with a really nice mild green curry. It was priced at $15.00 which I think is really a good deal for Sea Bass. We can't wait to go back again. The only bad thing is it's on the back of the shopping center and hard to find.

              1. Stopped by here for lunch today. I had one of the lunch specials of Green Curry. i have to say, it was one of the better Green Curries that I've had in town. They used real Thai eggplant. I ordered it 4* which I usually do, wow was it spicy good. Much hotter in relative terms to many of the Dallas std. joints. I'll go back. Folks running the place were very hospitable.

                2 Replies
                1. re: J.R.

                  My boyfriend and I ate at Bambu a few weeks ago. Being long time fans of Sushi Rock, we knew Bambu was opened so we dropped in and had a bite.
                  We we're very please with everything we ordered and the service was great! I agree with all of the review above and I am looking forward to our next visit to see Shelly and all the folk at Bambu.
                  Gotta have a Tom Kha Gai fix!!

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                  Sushi Rock
                  1861 N Central Expy Ste 125, Plano, TX 75075

                  Bambu
                  1930 N Coit Rd #100, Richardson, TX 75080

                  1. re: tylataylor

                    I've eatin there twice for lunch. The larb beef was very good and the Green Curry was also very good, They do make it spicy, which is good, plus the curry was not overloaded with coconut milk. This is a nice little place with friendly service but it's not quite incredible but if they served home made stuffed chicken wings they would then be incredible.

                2. We ate here (to go) tonight. Really excellent. Great Pad Thai, and the only restaurant in Dallas that can make Me Krob! Nice folks, and great food.

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                  Bambu
                  1930 N Coit Rd #100, Richardson, TX 75080