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Bamboo Creek Coming To Monterey Park

Chandavkl Mar 25, 2014 05:44 PM

In the space originally occupied by Bon Marche Bistro. Curious what style food they'll serve.

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  1. Chandavkl RE: Chandavkl May 2, 2014 01:24 PM

    Finally got a chance to stop by. As JThur01 points out, a tiny menu with 10 entrees, 9 appetizers, four tasty pots and a handful of noodles. Hardly enough to ascertain that this is Shanghai style. Had the Shanghai style sweet and sour fish and it was excellent. Vegetarian duck also pretty good. They do plan to expand their menu in the future with what looks like bento boxes and other dishes.

    9 Replies
    1. re: Chandavkl
      JThur01 RE: Chandavkl May 2, 2014 03:08 PM

      I noted honey smoked fish as one of the appetizers, which normally leans it to Shanghai or Wuxi-style, but you're right and that was my problem...it was difficult to ascertain.

      The honey smoked fish was quite good. Perhaps not on a par with Wang Xing Ji, but close and much easier to eat (Bamboo Creek used filets, so the bones easily came out).

      Thanks for the report. I'd like to visit again after they've expanded the menu.

      1. re: Chandavkl
        TonyC RE: Chandavkl May 2, 2014 03:23 PM

        They do Zhejiang. Owners formerly of Bamboo Express (USC) opened it: http://www.chihuo.org/zhuyuan-xiaoxi/

        The house special is the "grilled fish". Was once offered Chinese "omakase" here, which kinda scared the crap out of me.

        1. re: TonyC
          Chandavkl RE: TonyC May 2, 2014 03:29 PM

          Bamboo Express? Talk about going from the ridiculous to the sublime.

          1. re: TonyC
            JThur01 RE: TonyC May 2, 2014 05:19 PM

            Thanks Tony. You're right, Chihuo is killing it. I had missed that. Chinese "omakase" is a scary thought. What was it at the time you were offered that, erm, experience? Was it the restaurant prior to Dumpling 100?

            1. re: JThur01
              TonyC RE: JThur01 May 2, 2014 09:31 PM

              Bamboo Creek, 2 weeks ago.

              Good people, swindled on shit location.

              1. re: TonyC
                JThur01 RE: TonyC May 2, 2014 11:17 PM

                Easily one of the worst locations in the SGV. One has to practically stumble across it.

                How many have been in that space Chandavkl?

                1. re: JThur01
                  Chandavkl RE: JThur01 May 3, 2014 07:30 AM

                  This is #5 I know of. Bon Marche, Only You Dumplings, 100 Dumplings, and Peng Peng Xiang were prior tenants. But because of the obscure location who knows if somebody else snuck in for a while.

                2. re: TonyC
                  barryc RE: TonyC Jun 14, 2014 01:59 AM

                  looking at their new menu, i think that was their attempt to show off the versatility of the chef. if i got offered that at a reasonable price, i'd likely take them up on it, expecting an el bulli type of experience (though not necessarily at that level) of small plates.

                  they've got enlarged pics from the menu posted around the perimeter of the place (which has been spruced up quite a bit) above the windows. the servings in the pics aren't particularly large for the prices, which leads me to suspect that they're really going for quality over quantity in terms of their target clientele, i'd like to go back with a larger group and try a lot of those other dishes. i'm normally a pretty big eater, but we ended up taking home leftovers from lunch, (that 3rd person might have taken up the slack) so i'm thinking i might be fairly satisfied with an approach that doesn't feature volume, but has sufficient quality and diversity.

                  i didn't mention it, since you can see it in the menu, but i suspect that to accommodate the less sophisticated palates who may wander in (yeah i know) for lunch, they've included a couple of lunch specials including what looks like a bento box which was ordered by two non-asians seated at the next table who clearly had very little experience with chinese cuisine. .

              2. re: TonyC
                blimpbinge RE: TonyC May 2, 2014 11:27 PM

                is their menu similar? or less items?

                it looks good

            2. j
              jenny1028 RE: Chandavkl May 30, 2014 12:10 AM

              the owner was a national second grade chief in China since 1998, and he had two restaurants in China before coming to the States. He worked for Aegis Living as the culinary director before given an opportunity from relatives to take over Bamboo Express. Over the years, he's been learning new dishes in China from his former students who are mostly sucessful in Shanghai. So he definitely has what it takes to make it sucessful. He just need some more time and a better location.

              1 Reply
              1. re: jenny1028
                barryc RE: jenny1028 May 30, 2014 12:50 AM

                sounds promising. might try it for lunch tomorrow. if so, i will have a report.

              2. barryc RE: Chandavkl Jun 12, 2014 02:09 PM

                they just upgraded the menus yesterday - the waitress was still trying to get herself wrapped around all the new changes. since there were only two of us, we elected to split a 3 order $18 lunch special. three people could split this lunch special. NOTE: they charge an extra $1 per person for rice.

                we ordered the honey smoked fish (which was ok), the dry tofu & pork,.(which i liked mainly because the flavor of the soy tofu came out,, but my companion thought was underspiced and that the pork was not fresh), and the spicy fish/tofu. (again, my companion thought it underspiced, while i liked the fact that it didn't need to be because the fish was fresh and perfectly cooked. we both agreed that the pickled vegetable is what made the dish memorable.)

                as to the rest of the menu, the tasty pots seem reminiscent of the dry pots in wuhan cuisine. bullfrog is the main ingredient of 2-3 of their dishes. their special seems to be the fish.

                they're going to need word of mouth to work for them, because they're clearly not going to get much foot traffic.

                2 Replies
                1. re: barryc
                  JThur01 RE: barryc Jun 13, 2014 09:27 AM

                  Thanks for the report barry. Hopefully your dining companion wasn't expecting spicy at a Zhejiang-style place.

                  1. re: JThur01
                    barryc RE: JThur01 Jun 13, 2014 10:47 AM

                    that didn't occur to me until later.

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