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“You can't know what to expect . . . except to be delighted” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Chakara

Chakara
Ranked #2 of 96 Restaurants in Fairport
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: Chinese, Sushi, Thai
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children, Business meetings
Dining options: Dinner, Lunch, Accepts American Express, Accepts Discover, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Digital Payments, Free Off-Street Parking, Free Wifi, Full Bar, Highchairs Available, Parking Available, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Takeout, Television, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible
Essex, Connecticut
Level Contributor
58 reviews
36 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
“You can't know what to expect . . . except to be delighted”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 26, 2014

Of the three people who took care of us variously over the course of the evening. one was mainland Chinese, one was Taiwanese and one Korean. When the menu refers to the fare as "Pan-Asian," they're serious about it. We started with Crispy Rolls" filled with fresh ingredients well prepared—and actually crispy—while we enjoyed the evening's delightful Argentine Malbec and the casual atmosphere and sort of hipster diners seated around in 2s and 4s.

We ordered the Lemongrass Pepper Shrimp and both enjoyed its unique blend of Asian flavors that reminded us a bit of south Asian dishes but had a tangy, rich flavor all its own. With that we enjoyed even more Taipei Pepper Beef, the oyster sauce winning our greatest admiration for the evening. Someone in that kitchen is very skilled and really creative. We'll be going back.

  • Visited March 2014
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank jcwareham
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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112 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    80
    25
    5
    2
    0
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Rochester, New York
Level Contributor
2,860 reviews
1,880 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 857 helpful votes
“OK food, but disappointing for the price”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 21, 2014

This is going to be a tough review to write, because I entered this restaurant expecting to write a '5' review, especially reading everyone else's report of the place. It was even tougher since our waitress is a favorite "food person" of mine, (Britanny, of local bagel restaurant). But the truth is that I was underwhelmed by our meal, so please let me explain.

This restaurant is consistently rated in the top few restaurants in the town of Fairport. Also, I try to rate restaurants according to the price that we pay for a meal, so it is much easier for me to rate a really nice diner (where dinner costs $10.00) as a '5' than a restaurant where I spend well over $100. That is what I encountered tonight.

First of all, this is a very pretty place inside, and we did love our server, Brittany, who I consider almost as a friend. But our dinners were, well...ordinary for the amount of money spent. My wife and I both had the shrimp spring rolls, or whatever they are called here. They were OK...but really had very little taste compared with most of the spring rolls served around Rochester. The predominant taste was lettuce...plain lettuce with a shrimp inside. It badly needs some aromatic herb such as basil, which is rolled into the better shrimps rolls. Without something to give it flavor, it is pretty tasteless (although the peanut dipping sauce did help).

We also ordered the same main course, which was the triple-seafood entrée. It came with a bunch of scallops, shrimp, and a small lobster tail, all served with Chinese vegetables in a light white sauce. There was a lot of seafood in the mix, but the sauce really added nothing to the overall taste of the dish. It was very plain...not up to the standards of several other local Thai (or Chinese) restaurants. I hesitate to use the word "boring," but it was.

The good news is that both of our daughters enjoyed their dishes, which were a beef and noodle soup, and a Vegan tofu with vegetable dish. I'm glad they like their selections, as my wife and I both agreed that our dinners were not worthy of the recommendations we'd received in the past about this place.

In summary, we loved having our waitress, as we knew her from other places. But the food was simply not up to the recommendations we'd read, and certainly not up to the $100+ price tag (not including tip) for our meal. I doubt that we will return.

  • Visited March 2014
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
2 Thank Larry W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rochester, NY
Level Contributor
57 reviews
41 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
“Consistently delicious and fresh.”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 1, 2014

We've been to Chakara many times before, and they never disappoint. Staying consistently good is often a challenge for a restaurant.
Started dinner with pork belly sliders and fiery wontons. Great flavors, spicy but not too hot.
I try something different every time we go. Which is a tough choice, with cuisines from Korean to Indian to Thai. Tonight's entree was the Kurabota honey pig- thin sliced pork with fresh veggies and citrus in a tangy slightly sweet sauce. The food is just incredibly fresh.
We had Mango sake margaritas with the meal- sweeter than a standard margarita, with less of a bite from the sour mix. They make a great compliment to the food.
Nice job!

  • Visited February 2014
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank jilliam3224
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rochester NY
Level Contributor
52 reviews
25 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
“Very good”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 26, 2014 via mobile

Stopped here for first time and was impressed. Very friendly staff, and our dinners were delicious...basil tofu had wonderfully large fresh basil leaves. Also had a half price flight of warm saki.

Helpful?
Thank RochesterSicilian
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rochester, New York
Level Contributor
17 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Great restaurant and a surprise!”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 8, 2014

I had never been to Chakara although have passed it by many times. It's in a strip mall and it's hard to tell what it might be like on the inside. Although the decor is nothing much to speak of, the menu options for both food and drink are unique and the quality is excellent. I started with the miso soup and my dinner partner had the rice paper wraps. Then on to the Butter Chicken and the Chakara Chicken. Everything was scrumptious. We even splurged on the fried ice cream (vanilla, as they were out of the green tea).

Except for mixing up one of the appetizers with that of someone else's table, the service was great.

I've been to many Asian restaurants in Rochester, and this now is one of my top!

  • Visited January 2014
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank WNewyorker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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