I recently had the pleasure of a dinner meeting at Buddakan with Jessica, who is part of their PR team. We had fabulous service with an excellent server, but he knew ahead of time who we were, so I won’t focus on that. Let’s just talk about the food… and drink.
When I saw the FATE cocktail (on the left) on the menu, I had to have it. Prosecco, pineapple, and elderflower. Yeah, pretty much tailor made for me… and I loved it. Perfectly balanced without being cloyingly sweet. Delicious. Jessica had the DREAM, which tasted like guava juice and not much else, but I’m sure packed a punch! Excellent cocktails.
We’d both done our research beforehand, and the edamame dumplings came highly recommended. They were so cute! so delicate, and sitting in a mild broth of sorts. Interestingly, each dumpling was super tender, soft, and earthy… almost like there was a tiny bit of truffle to them. I’m pretty sensitive to truffle-earthiness, though I don’t recall seeing that on the menu description. While these were tasty, I’m a big fan of textures in food, and these were fairly uniform in texture – soft – so I would probably not order these again.
Jessica’s colleague had recommended a few more dishes for us to try. Shrimp toasts were next: shrimp paste crusted in sesame seeds, then deep fried. These reminded me of the deep fried shrimp balls you get at dim sum, and were pretty tasty dipped into the mustard on the right. I enjoyed my share very much, reminded of dim sum as a kid.
The other suggestion was Peking duck – $44.
Served with small rice crepes, I layered hoisin sauce, cucumber, scallion, and slices of duck with the crispy skin in them. I really enjoyed this – I’m actually not that familiar with Peking duck as a dish, having eaten it only a handful of times that I recall – but this was very tasty. There was no visible fat, though the meat was tender and juicy, and the skin was separated already and very crispy. Yum!
A blurry photo of the Dungeness crab sticky rice, which was topped with chunks of Dungeness crab meat. The rice itself was very flavorful, and I would swear to you that it was mixed with dried scallops, which have this intense flavor that I kill for. I’ve actually never even seen dried scallops used anywhere but real Chinese restaurants, so this was a pleasant surprise – the taste is meaty, ocean-y, and just really wonderful. Win.
Though by this time we were both rather full, dessert beckoned: almond bread pudding for Jessica, of which I tried only a few bites – good, but not my thing.
I went with the rock sugar donuts with three dipping sauces – egg custard, royal strawberry jelly and gianduja chocolate. The crunchy sugar on the outside of the donuts was great and the still-warm donuts were fab. Dipped into each sauce was great, but then all three at once – the waiter’s suggestion – so good! Love. I can’t say the best donuts I’ve ever had, but these were very good – and for a dessert donut served at a fancy restaurant, one of the best.
Since this meal was compliments of the PR firm, I can’t do a proper “Yvo says” – yes, service was great, but I didn’t look at any prices and we didn’t even get a bill. I can say, however, that the cocktails were fantastic, and the food was good enough – though a little pricey, I think – that I wonder why I’ve never visited. I would definitely not hesitate to go again with friends – the space is gorgeous, huge, and lovely!
Thank you again to Jessica for the fantastic meal – I had a blast just chatting about everything!
Please note that though this meal was courtesy of the PR firm, I was under no obligation to post about this meal, positively or negatively, nor did I receive compensation to do so. This is my opinion.