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“Am out-of-the-way Gem”

Bamboo House Restaurant
Ranked #319 of 540 Restaurants in Charlottesville
Cuisines: Asian, Korean
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children
Dining options: Lunch, Dinner, Reservations, Seating, Waitstaff
Columbia, South Carolina
Level Contributor
112 reviews
76 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
“Am out-of-the-way Gem”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 2, 2014

I live half the year in northeast Columbia, SC. By coincidence, my immediate neighborhood has numerous Korean restaurants and shops. Most of them are very good and my wife, friends and I eat in them regularly. The point is that I'm very familiar with Korean cuisine. This place, which is 34 miles from my house in the mountains and about 12 miles from downtown Charlottesville, is truly excellent. The owner/waitress is exceptionally polite and efficient, the food is outstanding and so is the service. It has a karaoke set-up but that is only used for parties. I have eaten in this restaurant three times, and the food has been exceptional. I heartily recommend this.

  • Visited March 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank hbs74
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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16 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    11
    4
    0
    0
    1
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Pigeon Forge, Tennessee
Level Contributor
68 reviews
58 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
“Good Food! Good Service! Unique! Not Your Normal Charlottesville "fusion" or chain restaurant experience!”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 11, 2014

Do not be fooled by the bland exterior! Not what you'd expect from C'ville. This place has a personality. Waitress was very nice. Food was very tasty. Place was clean. Interior decor is a little weird and dated, and there is no winery inside. Good place to eat!

  • Visited January 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank PotsieWeber
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Northern Virginia
Level Contributor
22 reviews
12 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
“Satisfied Craving for Korean Food”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 17, 2013

I visited this place in November while on a business trip. A smart phone search yielded few choices for Korean food in the area. Despite the reviews about the 'interesting/wierd' interior ambience, I decided to take a chance and take the 10 mile drive north on 29. It was lunch time on a Thursday and the place was completely empty. A very nice old lady who is the owner took my order and put on some unexpectedly good smooth jazz music. Other reviews about the wildlife taxidermy displays in the dining room were spot on but I didn't feel uncomfortable. My order of galbitong was generous in portion and very delicious. It came with a good variety of kimchi and vegitable side dishes. The old lady made several passes near my table to ensure I didn't need anything. Then she went to a backroom where I could hear her speak to an older lady who appears to be her mother. Since it was lunchtime and I was the only patron in the restaurant, I didn't mind the casualness of her demeanor.

I would likely make the trip again when in Charlottesville.

  • Visited November 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
2 Thank atsy_travels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
7 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Just like Mom used to make”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 7, 2013

If you are into authentic, homestyle Korean cooking, this is the place for you. Service can be a bit slow when there's a crowd, but it's because the proprietor is an army of one, serving double duty in the kitchen and front of house.

The cooking style here reminds me of how my mother cooked when I was growing up. The banchan (side dishes) consist primarily of cabbage kimchee, bean sprouts, spinach, and shredded radish kimchee. Bulgogi, kalbi, bibimbap, friend mandu, scallion pancakes (pajeon) were all great. Occasionally, she makes ggakdugi (cubed radish kimchee) which is my favorite kind of kimchee.

The ambiance is a hit or miss with some folks I know. I personally enjoy the taxidermy on display (foxes, deer, and other woodlandish critters), but it freaks some people out.

  • Visited April 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank mikeyadvises
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MidAtlantic
Level Contributor
47 reviews
40 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“4* for the food 5* for the ambiance”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 25, 2012

This is one of those places you either love or your wife makes you get up and leave. They have a large menu that is sure to please. I had a tasty Korean noodle soup. Pretty sure that was spaghetti in there, but it was still great. Taxidermy and other funky decor, priceless. Bamboo house should be on one of those annoying foodtv shows : one of the most unique places I have ever eaten.

  • Visited February 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank PhiloFarnsworth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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