Rick's Reviews: Rating the Asian Buffets

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As far as I’m concerned, Asian food must be shared; the bigger your party, the better the selection. That’s the great thing about an Asian buffet; you don’t have to have a big party to be able to sample a variety of dishes. I must not be the only one who thinks that way because South Florida has plenty of buffets serving a variety of Asian cuisines. You can sample Korean, Thai, Japanese and Chinese food at just about any Asian buffet in town.

But how do you choose?

Here are ten of the most popular Asian buffets in Broward County. Did we miss your favorite spot? Let us know in the comments section below.

Teppanyaki Buffet, 6795 Taft St., 754-703-4567, TeppanyakiBuffet.net

Not the swankiest place on the list, but certainly one of the most affordable. It is quite clean; the Chinese dishes are well-made and tasty (although they could be replenished more often). There are also American, Italian, and Mexican entrees and side dishes. The sushi is fresh, but may not feature sushi grade fish. The hibachi station is well-stocked, but can get backed up if it is very busy. Weekday lunch is $7.25, dinner and weekends are both $10.99. Kids’ meals are priced from $3.25 to $5.99, making it a great bargain if you’ve got a large family.

Shinju Buffet, 3305 S. University Dr., Davie, 954-472-3666, SJbuffet.com

(Locations in Boca Raton, Pembroke Pines, Coral Springs and Miami also)

This is sort of an Asian take on Old Country Buffet. Everything feels mass-produced. However, it is all very fresh and the quality of the seafood is impressive. Nearly 50 varieties of sushi and sashimi are offered, the hibachi is fast and fresh. Service is efficient and friendly. Chinese dishes may lack originality, but they are replenished often. Desserts feel like they came from Costco. Lunch $11.95 weekdays, $12.95 weekends. Dinner $19.95 Monday-Thursday, $21.95 Friday-Sunday.

China Buffet, 2091 N. University Dr., Sunrise, 954-572-9018, ChinaBuffetSunrise.com

One of the lowest priced buffets ($6.99 for lunch, $10.99 for dinner) and a true example of you get what you pay for. If you value quantity over quality this place is for you. The platters are piled high and the food, consequently, is not kept as hot as it should be. The bathrooms were disgusting, so I don’t even want to think about what the kitchen looks like. To be honest I can’t judge the food, because we didn’t stay.

Chow Time Grill & Buffet, 12375 Pembroke Rd., Pembroke Pines, 954-433-8898, ChowTimeFL.com

A number of places have failed in this location, but Chow Time seems to be doing just fine, judging by the crowds at lunch time. They could use a few more servers and an extra hibachi cook as the lines get backed up and plates aren’t cleared as quickly as they should be. The servers could also use a few lessons on customer relations, lots of yelling at people. One woman was told that she couldn’t take a picture of her food! The hibachi bar has lobster on weekends and there’s also a noodle bar. Lunch Monday-Friday, $8.49, dinner Monday-Thursday $12.99, Friday-Sunday $13.49, weekend brunch $11.49.

King’s Super Buffet, 7101 W. Oakland Park Blvd., Lauderhill, 954-747-6668

You’d think from the big crowds that this place would be great. Well, they’re no doubt drawn by the low prices because the food is among the worst I’ve ever tasted. Frozen Asian meals are better than what’s covering this buffet. King’s was recently cited by Broward Department of Health for six high-priority food violations. Lunch $5.95, dinner $11.99.

 

Golden City Buffet, 1700 E. Hallandale Beach Blvd., Hallandale, 954-457-8108,

GoldenCityFlorida.com

This is a family oriented place that tries to have something for everyone and ends up not doing anything particularly well. The staff is the Gestapo of servers chastising you if you don’t clean your plate (a piece of melon that wasn’t ripe) and removing your utensils when they feel you’ve had enough. The web site shows platters of seafood, including lobsters, king crab and oysters on the half shell, but don’t expect to find that on the buffet. However, you will find lackluster sushi, onion rings, French fries and garlic bread! Lunch $8.95, dinner $12.95, Monday-Thursday. Friday-Sunday, lunch $9.95, dinner $15.95.

Dragon Gourmet Buffet, 1091 S University Dr., Plantation, 954-423-8088

Attentive service and a variety of dim sum favorites; everything from har gow and shumai to more exotic fare, such as clams with black bean sauce and fried chicken feet, is what makes this place special. While there are many sushi options, the variety is lacking and it is not replenished as often as it should be. But it’s the Chinese dishes that are the draw here anyway, with such authentic fare as long beans with garlic and a variety of steamed fish. There’s also red bean ice cream and flan on the dessert station, two of the few dessert items not mass-produced. Lunch Monday through Friday is $9.95, dinner is $14.99 weeknights and $19.99 on weekends and holidays.

SanTo’s Modern American Buffet and Sushi, 4690 N. State Rd. 7, Coconut Creek, 954-971-6882 and 3400 N. Federal, Boca Raton, 561-923-9378, SantosBuffet.com

This is the place to go if you have folks in your group who don’t want Asian food. About half the offerings feature Asian food including sushi and sashimi as well as traditional Chinese fare (General Tso’s chicken, pot stickers, beef with broccoli), much of which tastes like cafeteria food. There are an equal number of traditional American favorites (roast beef, ham, and the expected side dishes) as well as tacos, pizza and chicken fingers and fries, for the kids. Again, cafeteria quality, and it is clean, but the food is not replenished as often as it should be. Lunch on weekdays is $12.95. Dinner is $20.95 on weekdays, $23.25 weekends. Saturday and Sunday brunch is $16.95 (add $7 for unlimited mimosas).

Nabu American Fusion Buffet, 3485 N. Federal, Fort Lauderdale, 954-568-2208, NabuAmericanFusionBuffet.com

This buffet has taken over the last of the spaces formerly occupied by the Kyojin chain. The new owners have spent a great deal to upgrade the décor (porcelain serving bowls on the hot buffet instead of steam table pans), more comfortable chairs and better lighting. They’ve also upgraded the food significantly, the fish is now sushi grade and the meat on the hibachi looks fresher. The crab legs are actually quite fresh and tasty, not the mushy frozen version served at most Asian buffets in the area. Not certain what the “American Fusion” is about as the food is strictly Japanese and Chinese with a touch of Korean. The dessert bar offers a few unique dishes (pecan pie and panna cotta!). Lunch is $11.95 and dinner $18.95 on weekdays. It’s $20.95 all day on weekends.

Miyako Japanese Buffet, 1157 S. Federal, Pompano Beach, 754-222-2669, MiyakoSeafoodSushiBuffet.com

The jewel in the crown of Asian buffets! When you enter the first thing you see is the circular sushi station, which looks like a flying saucer. Appropriate since the sushi here is out of this world. Super fresh, sushi grade fish is presented with dozens of sushi rolls, as well as a vast array of sashimi. The sushi bar is well chilled and the platters are replenished often (I’ve seen them dump stuff in the trash rather than re-plate it) and they are fanatical about cleanliness. This isn’t just the best sushi at a buffet; it’s among the best sushi in town! The hot food buffet offers the usual dishes, as well as enough dishes to please meat and potatoes folks (roast beef, kielbasa, mashed potatoes and corn on the cob). There’s also a hibachi station that cranks out your selected combo quickly. The dessert bar features six flavors of ice cream and a variety of pre-made desserts. Lunch is $11.95, $12.95 on weekends. Dinner is $18.95, $20.95 weekends (Friday and Saturday dinners feature lobster with ginger and scallions).

 


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