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“Little gem”
Review of The Hungry Buddha - MOVED

The Hungry Buddha
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $5 - $20
Cuisines: Indian, Nepali
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Delivery, Private Dining, Reservations, Takeout
Description: The Hungry Buddha began its life in mid-2011 with two simple goals mind, too cook authentic Nepalese food, and serve our customers with a genuine and friendly hospitality. Two friends, Lachhu Thapa and Benjamin Richardson, have come together to turn this concept into a reality. Priding themselves on staying true to their original goals of traditional food and great service.Located in the centralised suburb of Curtin in south Canberra, The Hungry Buddha is tucked away down-stairs in the ever surprising Curtin shops. Hard to find...but once you do prepare to be greeted by the delicate spiced aroma of a traditional Nepalese kitchen, and the native Nepali influenced stylings of this atypical space. Just 10 minutes from Civic, much closer then Nepal.
Reviewed August 23, 2012

I didn't have high hopes to find a nice restaurant at Curtin shops when I was staying nearby but this place was an excellent surprise. Delicious food, attentive serivce and reasonable prices. You will find it down some stairs adjacent a big used bookshop that is open late sort of in the heart of Curtin shops.

1  Thank blindjoe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thapa8848, Owner at The Hungry Buddha, responded to this reviewResponded September 12, 2012

Thanks!!! I am sure we will see you again. We endeavour to provide the best service and food.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviews (147)
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138 - 142 of 147 reviews

Reviewed August 21, 2012

Location. The Curtin shops are easy to get to from anywhere in Canberra and over the past year there has been a surge of new businesses opening which has enhanced the vibe of a well-looked after and bustling suburban centre. The restaurant itself is underground and a little hard to spot next to the chemist. Parking is plentiful. The restaurant is not wheelchair-accessible but takeaway is available and the staff will bring food upstairs if you ask.

Décor. The restaurant has a smart modern décor which uses to excellent effect the chandeliers and mirror from the previous restaurant on the site. Particularly attractive are the grass-green and mountain-scree coloured feature walls which would remind those people who have been trekking in Nepal of the grassy meadows of the middle ranges, or the high-mountain scree slopes above Tengboche monastery in eastern Nepal. Tables and flooring are teak in colour and chairs are comfortable to sit on. Seating around the edges of the restaurants is on padded benches, as it is in the tea houses of the country. The music is soft and traditional, and this is fine if you like traditional instrumental Nepalese music but not so good if you’re after something from the 20th century or later.

Drinks. They offer the same hot-lemon drink that can be had when walking in the Himalaya to sustain fluid levels at altitude in the cold, but this can only be obtained on request and is not shown in the menu. Other than that there are decent wines and the normal beverages.

Mains. My favourite dish is the Nepalese Salmon. It is the most delicious piece of salmon, perfectly cooked to a light crust on the outside while remaining juicy inside, and with the lightest dusting of Nepalese spices … it should be savoured in small morsels to extend the pleasure of eating such a beautifully tasting dish. The fish is complemented by aside serving of an unusual mix of spinach and onions. This is a dish that one can dream of having again.

Of the remaining vegetarian mains, the two which standout as offering memories of trekking in Nepal are Maas Ko Daal, black lentils, from the dine in menu only, and Aloo Gobi, potato with cauliflower. They are served spicier than in the tea houses on the trekking routes, and the sauces are more watery. The Jhaneko Daal, lentils, and Aloo Tama, potatoes with bamboo shoots and black eyed beans, are welcome variations on the two trekking stalwarts. The taste of the food seems to be more influenced by the cooking of western Nepal than the east. The cook says that Nepalese food is different from Indian food becauseIndian food is about the taste of the spices, whereas Nepalese food retains the taste and texture of the ingredients and does not let the spice take over.

I normally have the food as takeaway, but the salmon should only be eaten in the restaurant.

Service. The staff and two owners are exceptionally friendly especially if you have some sort of connection with Nepal. The staff are also very attentive without being intrusive.

Anyone who eats here will know that they are getting the same honest food that they would get when walking into a local home in Nepal.

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2  Thank John M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thapa8848, Owner at The Hungry Buddha, responded to this reviewResponded September 12, 2012

Thanks!! I am glad that we bring you memories of Nepal here in Australia. We will do what we can to provide more variations on our Menu and the best service and serve Nepal right here in Curtin.

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Reviewed August 15, 2012

Went there last week with my wife. Had a really nice dinner which included entree, dinner and desert. For the entree we had the mixed platter, everthing served on it was briiilant, with the samosa(or dim sim thing??) being my personal favorite. Then mains we had the Nepalese dhicken dish and the black lentils dish, both were superb with my favorite being the lentils (almost sweet in flavour). Then was desert wher we got the rice pudding and a greek yoghurt with fruit, unfortunately niether of these took my fancy, not to say they were bad, just not great. Will deffinately be back.

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Thank Timeeh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 4, 2012

Attended this restaurant with a group of 10 for a family birthday. We had a fair mix-up following my mis-reading the fine print on a group of 'meal-deal' vouchers I had purchased for the restaurant. The restaurant staff (in particular Ben) could not have been more helpful sorting this out and arranging a very reasonably priced alternative banquet meal for our group. A great combination of flavours (although the Nepalese tea takes a bit of getting used to). Plenty to eat, without being too much. The wine list contains a good selection of reasonably priced wines. Will certainly go again on future visits to Canberra. (They are also adjacent to what would have to be one of the best second-hand bookshops in Australia, if you happen to be dining early enough to catch it open !)

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Thank gm256
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 28, 2012

I ate at the Hungry Buddha with a family group. We had varied dishes and we all found the food to be average and lacking taste. I ordered the fish pieces for an entree and rendang curry for a main. Although the fish itself was good quality and cooked well, it was bland and lacked taste. The same with the rendang, it came in a watery sauce and although very tender, it was tasteless. The restaurant's decore is neutral and the acoustics are good so you can easily have a conversation with your fellow diners. Although the waiters were pleasant, they were not really on the ball and one meal was not served. We had to wait for 5 mins for it to turn up but the owner was very appologetic.

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Thank Blu_Rock
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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