With great ambiance and terrific food, Buddha Taco (3628 Broadway on 149th and Broadway) offers everything you want in a great taco joint. Opened by serial restauranteur and “Chopped” contestant, James Lee, this is now one of my favorite NY spots. Buddha Taco serves a culinary mash-up of Mexican and Korean bar food that is simply delectable. The pairing of great food with a wide variety of craft beers and specialty cocktails, makes this a wonderful date spot. I will definitely be making a regular trek up to Hamilton Heights to get their fish tacos and the incredibly delicious Korean BBQ wings. They also make the best brussell sprouts I have ever had in my entire life!
Of his new venture, which is his second in the neighborhood, Lee states, “For over a decade, I’ve been lucky to be part of the Uptown community. I’m proud of the reputation we’ve established and am eager for Buddha Taco Bar to contribute to this scene, offering a creative touch on Mexican classics in a fun and casual atmosphere. I’m excited to share this vision with locals and visitors alike, in a neighborhood I love.”
The atmosphere is casual and the crowd is a mix of the people that make NY such a diverse place to live. The night I was there there were hipsters, older Hispanic folks, young African-Americans on dates and an older Jewish couple also on a date. I love that this little joint attracts such a cool crowd. Five tv screens feature sports and 70’s/80’s tv shows, like Wonder Woman and Seinfield. The staff are as gorgeous as they are kind.
My favorite things on the menu include:
Korean Wings – These chicken wings in a Korean BBQ sauce dipped in sesame seeds are awesome.
Fish Tacos – Cod fish lightly marinated in lime juice with pico de Gallo. I paired this with the yummy green hot sauce.
Shrimp Tacos – Shrimp marinated in lime juice with pico de Gallo and pickled onion. These are also yummy with the green hot sauce.
Chicken Tacos – Tinga chicken with chipotle peppers topped with onions and cilantro.
Brussel Sprouts – Get these instead of the chips and salsa. They are the yummiest sprouts you will ever have.
Veggie Taco – I had this one on a bed of lettuce. Made of mushroom and tofu, these are so ridiculously tasty you do not miss the meat.
Seems like I went to review a week too early, as Buddha Tacos rolled out their new menu this week. There are now rice bowls, tostadas, taquitos, watermelon salad and a chicken pineapple salad on the menu. I can’t wait to have the time to go again and try out these newer items.