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Bambu, Pan-Asian (Thai, Japanese, and Chinese) on MacArthur Blvd. in Palisades


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[posted on eGullet 2003-2004]

Tom's April, 2003 review is here.

I finally made it to Bambu for a light lunch, and while I found it edible, my meal was very ordinary. The sushi-sashimi lunch special ($8.50) included a pretty good miso soup, with finely cubed, custardy tofu, scallions and a fair amount of dark-green seaweed. The pickled ginger on the fish plank was distressingly pink, and the blandish, powdered wasabi had the texture of thick mashed potatoes. The sashimi consisted of six chunks of good, fresh medium-fatty tuna, presented atop a typically boring pile of seaweed (with sesame seeds/oil and hot pepper flakes); the sushi was one piece of flounder and two pieces of very thick-cut salmon, all fresh, but inexplicably served with no wasabi, and sitting atop poorly vinegared rice; and then there was the unfortunate California Roll, with the usual shreds of pollock, decent avocado and a bit of curiously cranberry-colored fish roe. Nothing was so terribly bad, but there's no reason to go here for sushi when Kotobuki and Makoto are just down the street unless you're driving by and want a quick, low-calorie carryout lunch. The menu also has an odd blend of Chinese and Thai dishes interspersed with the Japanese fare.

Cheers,

Rocks.

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I've eaten at Bambu three times in the last two months. It isn't bad, it isn't extraordinary but it is better than yick (at least lately :angry: ). To be fair, all I've ever eaten is a good miso soup, sushi and a great seafood salad. The seafood salad stands out for several reasons. The first time I ordered it it was because they no longer make the Squid salad I wanted, which was basically the same salad I wound up with minus the shrimp and scallops (and 3-4 dollar upcharge). But I ate it and am glad I did. Big Shrimp, Scallops and Squid in a fresh lime juice dressing laced with sweet chili sauce and lots of fresh veggies, it was really good. I haven't eaten anything else there so I can't comment on the rest of the menu but it fills my craving on the days I don't wanna bother with the crowds at Kotobuki and sides, it's literally four doors down and sometimes that's good enough B)

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Bambu serves food of little distinction but their HK style noodle soup can be of mild comfort in winter months. The funny thing is that it is owned by the hole-in-the-wall takeout joint 3 or 4 doors up MacArthur, Chen's Gourmet, which is much better (and cheaper), and whose hot and sour soup is worth trying. I also like their sliced pork appetizer and their garlic spinach. Bambu, in addition to bland pan-Asian dishes, offers uncomfortably rigid chairs and acoustical din. Despite all, they seem to do good business.

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We get Bambu delivery every now and then. I love sushi and my husband loves Chinese food, so it satisfies both of us. No, it is not spectacular but they are always friendly, efficient and the food arrives in under 40 minutes.

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