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June/July 2006
Red Bamboo’s in the Brooklyn Hood
Restaurant Review by Maureen C. Wyse

 

Red Bamboo Brooklyn’s outdoor dining patio.
Photo courtesy of Jason Wong

Have you heard the news? The place Brooklynites have been waiting, asking, begging for—for years—has finally arrived! Red Bamboo Brooklyn is in the hood.

Jason Wong, former manager of the original vegetarian heaven, Red Bamboo (Manhattan), has taken the goods to a different borough. Stationed on the corner of Adelphi Street and DeKalb Avenue in Fort Greene, the new place is stunning. An enchanting former Italian restaurant—frequented by mobsters of the 60s—Red Bamboo Brooklyn is a beautiful, roomy, all vegetarian (with plenty of clearly marked, vegan options) eatery. A spacious outdoor seating area wraps the historic building in an L-shape, allowing patrons to dine while viewing the lively Fort Green night life. The interior decor is inviting as well—chic, comfortable and sustainable. Jason and his team of co-founders furnished the bistro with crushed sunflower seed table-tops, ply-boo (compressed bamboo) flooring and more. Simple browns and tans color the walls, bamboo mats adorn the ceiling and candlelight creates a warm glow throughout the restaurant. The restaurant also flaunts cozy booth seating, an ample array of two-tops and a full sit-down bar. And as if that was not enough, a spiral staircase leads up to the swanky second floor lounge, complete with mini bar, plush couches and a lovely outdoor patio. No more waiting for a table, Red Bamboo Brooklyn has space and knows how to use it.

The menu, while still ‘under development,’ includes most of the old favorites, Soul Chicken, Buffalo Barbecue Wings and Chicken Parmesan, as well as lots of exciting new creations. Entrées range between $10.95-$12.95 and sandwiches from $7.95-$10.95. The Willy Bobo, a classic Cubano sandwich, captured my taste buds with its smoked soy ham, vegan Swiss cheese and dijon mustard, pressed in delicious flakey, grilled panini bread. Their Caribbean Jerk Chicken entrée—with tender grilled seitan slightly marinated in spiced molasses and lime-papaya juice dressing, served with sweet vidalia onion sauce, mashed potatoes, mushroom gravy, and steamed veggies—is sure to be a crowd pleaser. Vegan Cobb Salad, Philly Cheese Steak and Bourbon Chicken Kebabs are top choices as well.

For dessert try delicious Vegan Treats cakes, including White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake and Death By Chocolate. And in addition to Klein’s vegan ice cream, they also serve delicious fat-free pineapple, coconut, mango and peach sorbets. And for those who want to enjoy a sweet appertif, try one of their sorbet-shot couplings, like creamy coconut sorbet paired with Malibu rum!

As if I couldn’t be more elated by the stunning new location, Red Bamboo now serves weekend brunch in Brooklyn! No more breaking out the frying pans or waffle irons on sleepy Saturday and Sunday mornings. With vegan blueberry cornmeal pancakes, Belgian waffles, tofu scramble and more, you’ve got the perfect start to your weekend.

With their hip lounge and delectable menu in the works, Red Bamboo Brooklyn is the place to be. And want some future gossip? Wong says that over the next five years, you can expect three more Red Bamboos. So cross your fingers and hope they’re coming to your neck of the woods.

Red Bamboo Brooklyn is located at 271 Adelphi Street (corner of DeKalb Avenue). Take C train to Lafayette Avenue or G to Clinton-Washington or Fulton Street. Open Tuesday through Friday, noon-midnight; Saturday and Sunday, 11-midnight (brunch, 11 am-4:30 pm). Contact www.redbamboobrooklyn.com or (718) 643-4352.

 


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