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Chelsea Market, 75 Ninth Ave., nr. W. 16th St. (Chelsea)
New York, NY
(1) 212-989-6699 | www.buddakannyc.com
HOURSSun.-Mon.: 5:30pm-11:00pm; Tue.-Wed.: 5:30pm-12:00am; Thurs.-Sat.: 5:30pm-1:00am
PRICE (APPETIZER; ENTRÉE)USD 11-15; USD 24-44
FAMOUS PLATESJade shrimp dumplings; Dungeness crab sticky rice; crying chocolate
DRINKS AND WINECocktails; wine; beer; full bar
# OF SEATS275
PRIVATE ROOM AVAILABLE?Yes
SUBWAY14th St.-8th Ave. (A, C, E, L); 14th St.-7th Ave. (1, 2, 3)
Restaurateur Stephen Starr aims to amaze, and his aspirations don't fall short at this cavernous 16,000-square-foot establishment. Buddakan is a maze-like fortress of massive, dimly lit rooms and towering ceilings. Each banquet-hall-like space is ornamented with porcelain vases, Buddha icons, dripping wax candles, and hordes of pretty young things eager for delicious fun. The smaller dining rooms host wall paintings depicting ancient scenes from China’s past. Throughout, the mood is hyped and happening, as diners pour over the yummy Asian-inspired fare.
An animated group of sexy singles, power suits, and tourists eager to see it for themselves.
WHAT WE WOULD WEAR
Anything that fits downtown chic: try a clingy dark cocktail dress with tights, high heels or boots, and a glittery clutch.
GO HERE WITH
Friends; significant other
WHY WE LIKE IT
The design—impeccable. The décor—incredible. And while the food may not be up to those standards, it’s still a fun time to be had by all.
WHAT WE WOULD CHANGE
The scene is exciting enough, but then again, we could just settle with a night of authentic Chinatown fare topped off by clubbing in the Lower East Side. Buddakan attempts both but fails to truly perfect either.
GOOD TO KNOW
The restaurant was the concept of French designer Christian Liaigre, who transformed the former cookie factory space into the extravagant vision it is today. Apart from its dining rooms, Buddakan also hosts a front lounge and bar for walk-ins and those waiting for reservations (it can take up to 30 minutes to be seated), offering up drinks such as their popular bright-colored martinis to idlers and barflies alike. Apart from the popular main dining room, the library-like space below boasts walls of ancient volumes and might be the second best room in the house. Rumors are that if you ask politely, the kitchen can construct traditional Chinese plates otherwise left off the fusion-focused menu. This restaurant is convenient to Meatpacking District nightlife for post-dinner fun.
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