Venues

Greedy Buddha

Greedy Buddha
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  • Phone Number 031 566 4383
  • Location 12 on Palm Boulevard, Gateway, Umhlanga Rocks, Durban
  • email info@greedybuddha.co.za
  • Website URL http://www.greedybuddha.co.za
  • Opening Hours

    Lunch: Tuesday to Friday 12noon to 3pm; Saturday and Sunday 12noon to 12pm

    Dinner: Monday 4.30pm to 9pm; Tuesday to Friday 4.30pm to 12pm

Cost
R160 avg main meal
Ambience
Comfy & casual, Contemporary cool, Family friendly
Food
Asian, Japanese, Modern, Seafood, Tapas
Payment
Mastercard, Visa

Critic's review

Nikita Buxton

Food
The Asian-inspired menu features tapas and main dishes, with classic flavours as well as more experimental combinations. The tapas portions of soup, served in tiny espresso cups, are a great way to start the meal. On our visit, we sip on a vegetarian laksa, which is packed with spicy flavours and a hint of coconut.

Dim sum lovers can delve into potstickers and wontons filled prawn and chive, butternut and feta, or a personal favourite, the beef and fresh chilli version.  The Ducking Fantastic platter is also ideal for sharing. Peking duck is shredded at the table, allowing diners to assemble their own pancakes with accompaniments of cucumber, spring onion and a sweet and salty hoisin sauce. The duck is a touch on the dry side but delicious once it’s drenched in the flavoursome sauce and bundled into a light pancake.

Other highlights include the crispy pork belly that’s roasted and served with smoked potato purée, the sticky twice-cooked pork ribs, and the hearty prawn- or beef-topped Malaysian Bang Bang noodles with chilli and Asian pesto. There’s also the signature pan-seared line fish, lamb loin chops, and chicken, pork or beef burgers for picky eaters.

Drinks
There is a good wine list with some reasonable options, but the popular choice here is the cocktail selection. The Buddha G&T is a refreshing recommendation, made with Tanqueray gin, lemon essence, fresh lime, mint and tonic.

Service
The Greedy Buddha staff are knowledgeable, attentive and able to offer some great suggestions if you’re having trouble choosing from the menu.

Ambience
The newer location boasts a stylish, cosmopolitan interior with sleek finishes and twinkling lights. The cocktail terrace has a view of the shopping centre across the way; fairy lights and palm trees add a touch of warmth to the outdoor space.

And…
Be sure to keep an eye open for the great lunch specials. Currently, diners can choose anything from the menu, including tasting menus, and receive 20% off the bill.

(May 2016)

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  • Tracy Gielink

    Food
    There’s a predilection for Asian flavours – some are translated literally and some liberally. Delve into inspired tapas dishes like wontons filled with pork, prawn and ginger, or potsticker dumplings filled with Asian mushrooms and herbs. The ducking fantastic platter is also suited to communal eating – Peking duck is shredded at the table; thereafter diners assemble their own pancakes. Other standout dishes are the slow roasted crispy pork belly served with a flavourful smoked potato mousse, apple and teriyaki glaze, and the delicious sushi salad that combines citrus-cured salmon with watercress, cucumber ribbons, baby spinach, wasabi dressing, avo puree, Asian pesto and pickled ginger. The menu also incorporates regular size main course options like the seared line fish served with a red pepper, ginger and coconut cream and tagliatelle.

    Drinks
    A carefully contemplated selection that is quality rather than cost conscious, so premier wines provide more options for discerning drinkers.

    Service
    Consistency is key. Well-groomed waiters are confident in their menu knowledge and observe necessary service nuances. They are attentive and backed up by an efficient kitchen so, in keeping with the tapas ethos, dishes are delivered to the table in a stream as they are ready.

    Ambience
    Previously tucked away in a small suburban shopping centre, the restaurant has metamorphosed into a stylish new venue. The upmarket, cosmopolitan interior relies on texture rather than colour, as the neutral colour scheme is interpreted with clean, contemporary lines. Stacking doors open up to reveal the bustling boulevard outside Gateway shopping centre.

    And…
    Take advantage of good value set and lunch menus.

  • Tracy Gielink

    Food
    Chef Nardia Adams produces beautiful plates of tantalising Asian food. Presented tapas style, the portions are small and well priced. Standouts include the lamb, chilli and coriander pot stickers; delicious sticky steamed buns filled with roast pork and served with a caramel chilli jam; and prawn tails cooked in seven spice and juxtaposed with a coconut-infused pea purée and Asian mango salad.

    The traditionally served duck pancakes are understandably popular and the chicken in a tamarind-infused peanut sauce with chilli, ginger, coriander and mint is memorable. For something more unusual, try the crispy spinach with five-spice sugar and prawn dust and, for a blissful finale, finish with a subtle lemongrass panna cotta topped with green tea sherbet.

    Drinks
    A reciprocal arrangement sees a full bar service supplied by the neighbouring restaurant which, fortunately, does not hamper service. The wine list is a pragmatic collection of easy drinking SA options.

    Service
    The zealous service stops short of being familiar and it’s hard not to share the waiters’ enthusiasm of the menu. Allow them to guide you and make recommendations – you won’t be disappointed. Dishes arrive on the table as they’re prepared, so relax and enjoy the steady stream of food.

    Ambience
    The tiny interior is dedicated to the kitchen, so all the tables are set up on the verandah, which is closed in and heated during winter. The look, like the flavours, is clean and fresh. Lines are soft, the palette is white and each table is adorned with a lazy Susan for easy communal eating.

    And…
    Tasting menus offer a great overview.

    (July 2014)

  • Southeast Asian tapas. Pot stickers have sticky tops with crispy bottoms and the Ducking Fantastic is just that: wrapped in a pancake with spring onion, cucumber and plum sauce. The specials deserve attention, too. Think Szechuan garlic-and-chilli halloumi with candied cashews or seared beef nigiri with ginger, avo, wasabi, sweet potato crisps and pea shoots. (Eat Out magazine 2014)
  • Food
    Chef Michael Broughton of 2012 Top 10 restaurant Terroir consulted on the menu. Pot stickers (like lamb, chilli and coriander) juxtapose a soft, sticky top with crispy bottom; the waiter suggested biting into them and sucking out the delicious liquid. Generous pork steamed buns are endearingly described as ‘Chinese bunny chow’ and, despite their anaemic appearance, deliver a riot of flavours. The roast pork version was nearly upstaged by the delicious caramel chilli jam that accompanied it. Inspired by Peking duck, the Ducking Fantastic is just that and offers gently cooked duck wrapped in a pancake with the traditional spring onion, cucumber and plum sauce.More substantial dishes include slices of unctuous pork belly adorned with a satisfying sliver of crunchy crackling and served on braised red cabbage; and the specials menu, which is inspired by rather than dictated to by authenticity, deserves attention. Think Szechuan garlic and chilli halloumi with candied cashews or Asian seared beef nigiri layered with ginger, avo, wasabi and horseradish and daintily topped with sweet potato crisps and pea shoots. Desserts are limited but interesting with the likes of a lemongrass vanilla panna cotta served with green tea jasmine sherbet. Menu items range from R27 to R49 and offer great value for money.

    Wine
    There is no wine list available but you can take your own and pay corkage; or order wine from the restaurant next door (which is conveniently added to your bill).

    Service
    Exceptional service was somewhat unexpected given the laid-back feel of the restaurant. The seldom-achieved balance of friendliness and professionalism was easily attained; staff are forthcoming with recommendations and are knowledgeable on preparation, ingredients and even on how best to eat various dishes.

    Ambience
    The premises doesn’t allow for an indoor dining area as the compact space has been dedicated to the kitchen, but it’s hardly a necessity in Durban. White, undressed tables – apart from the lazy Susans that allow for convenient communal eating – dominate a covered veranda and a bright green wall featuring a mural of a cheerful Buddha, which is the only décor element, even if it is by necessity rather than design.

    And...
    The Greedy Buddha’s take-away menu should be operational by September 2013 and the brand will expand once suitable premises are found.(Tracy Gielink, August 2013)

User reviews

  • I seldom eat pork, let alone order it at a restaurant, but I would do backflips for their crispy roasted pork belly. Served with the sweetest red cabbage compote and the smoothest smoked potato puree, this dish has it all! And that's only the beginning; you are spoilt for choice with this menu. Couple that with an impressive wine list and a vibe ideal for a romantic dinner or a relaxed catch-up, this restaurant definitely makes for a superb evening out.
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  • Excellent food, excellent service and a great ambience. Definitely one of our favorite restaurants to eat at in Umhlanga. The food is always of top standard and quality and presented as if you are at a 5* fine dining restaurant - carefully going over the pass past the eye of the head chef.
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  • Greedy Buddha is one of those restaurants that my husband & I fell in love with right from the very beginning. They opened their doors in Broadway on a verandah a few years ago, which wasn’t the greatest location if you were looking for some relief from the Durban heat, but they won us over with their beautiful, unique flavours and their excellent service. Shortly after, they then upgraded their premises to a fancier one in Umhlanga. I can’t say that I’m not relieved that they now have an indoor airconned area for those scorching summer days. For the cooler days, they still have their verandah/ balcony seating option. Except now, you’ll be dining under the stars…. So what’s so special about them? Greedy Buddha just get Asian fusion flavor, presentation, consistency and service. Let me elaborate. Every time you go, you’re guaranteed to be welcomed by the open arms and the booming voice of Kondo. He will be your host and go-to-guy for the evening and believe me when I say you can always count on him to bring you the best dishes or to suggest the best combinations. His memory is outstanding, having recognized us from the second time we dined at Greedy Buddha and every single time since then. He, along with his fellow waiters are attentive, but not clingy, and fast, but not too fast, giving you just enough time to digest your food before the next course. They are super professional, courteous and clued up on the menu. Somehow, in addition to that, their kitchen staff always produce exact replicas of the dish we had the last time, not a microherb out of place. So that covers the service & the consistency. When it comes to flavor & presentation, all I can say is that the Head Chef obviously has a very sophisticated palate, a very particular eye and a vast knowledge of worldly ingredients, because everything the kitchen throw together – every texture, every taste, every colour, every angle, every plate type, makes for the perfect end product, a dish that’ll have you savouring each mouthful with your eyes closed and a satisfied sigh. What’s more, whether it’s pay day or the pockets are feeling a bit light, you have time to kill, or need a quick bite before a movie at Gateway, Greedy Buddha has something for you. If you have some time on your hands, and it’s a special occasion (like pay day), I’d suggest you go for the Full Journey Tapas tasting menu. That way, you will get to test a little bit of everything. Believe me, this will make things a whole lot easier for you, because it’s really hard to choose just 1 or 2 tapas from their incredible selection. But make sure you go hungry because their servings are large. Alternatively if you’re looking for a good deal or “fast food”, choose a soup and one of their tapas just to wet your appetite for the next time you go. Oh yes – there will definitely be a next time. They also have Tapas lunch specials on offer if you’re looking for an inexpensive mid-day snackeroo. If you do decide on a dinner date, be sure to book a table out on the balcony underneath the beautifully strung up fairy lights to complete your magical experience. When it comes to drinks, the guys will be happy to know that Greedy Buddha have an extensive range of craft beers and the ladies will be blown away by their wide array of wines. On our last visit, Craig tried the Skeleton Coast Indian Pale Ale for the first time, and I had the house Cab Sav. Both very yum. In addition to tapas, Greedy Buddha now also have a main meal menu where they, much to our delight, have bumped up some of their best tapas to a main meal size. They have also introduced some new mains dishes for those who aren’t huge fans of tasting platters or tapas. They now have everything from soups to pot stickers, to vegetarian dishes, salads and meaty dishes with tasty twists. And if you have someone in the group that just wants some good old Chinese noodles, they’ve got that covered too. The dishes we have tried and loved so far have been the Szechwan Chili Halloumi Bites, The Ducking Fantastic Wrap shredded right at your table by your friendly waitress, Crispy Chicken Bites, Tempura Baby Calamari, Sesame Crusted Prawn & Calamari Toasts, Twice Cooked Pork Spare Ribs. But the ones we would really recommend you try are: Crispy Roasted Pork Belly with Smoked Potato Puree, Red Cabbage Compot and Teriyaki Glaze, Tempura 7- spice Prawn Tails with Coconut Pea Puree & Mango Salsa, and the Salmon Sashimi Plate with Citrus Cured Salmon Sashimi, Avo Puree, Wasabi Mayo, Pickled Ginger & Coriander Pesto. Just well thought out dishes with surprising combinations of flavours, that are delectably satisfying every single time. If you’re someone who values knowing where your meat is coming from, you’ll be happy to know that Greedy Buddha only use top quality, fresh, never frozen, free-range meat wherever possible. Their duck & baby chickens are free-range and sourced from the Midlands and their beef is from Northern KZN, dry aged and grass fed. Their lamb is from the Karoo, free-range and AAA-grade. So if my review wasn’t a good enough reason to get you booking a table right at this very moment, then I’m sure that will!
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  • Although I have seen some negative reviews, after having been three times I've never had a bad experience. The food is Asian inspired and the menu has a wide selection of options. As advised by our waiter, we tried the Peking duck wraps. They were delicious and I've ordered the same starter every time we've returned. They are served in four's and eight's so it's easy to share with table. I tried the tempura calamari on my most recent visit and I wasn't as impressed as I was with the duck. It was a bit greasy and tasted quite bland. For main's I've tried the fillet steak and crispy pork belly. The steak was cooked to perfection, tender and one of the best I have eaten in Durban. The pork belly was equally enjoyable, melt in your mouth tender and as the title suggested - crispy without being overdone! The staff was welcoming, attentive and had a good knowledge of the menu and what the strengths were. The manager also made rounds and he was always available for any niggles throughout our time there. The location is very central if you're in the Gateway and Umhlanga area, and the extended deck area is perfect for warm summer evenings.
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  • The food was disgusting! Basically like licking a salt block! We shared the tempura calamari which was fresh! But the chicken chilli bites and the pork belly with Apple and teriyaki which we each had our own servings was so so salty that it was inedible! On top of mentioning this to our waiter nothing was done about this ! Quite disappointing as we had heard great things! Unfortunately we won't ever be going back!
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  • I don't really think that its a good restaurant food and service definitely needs to be improved i would not try it again.
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  • Have eaten here several times, starting when the restaurant comprised of just four or five tables. Now the restaurant has spread out to occupy the rest of the covered veranda. Head Chef Nardia Adams menu is the most amazing juggling act of balance and complex understanding of Asian food. The dim sum is some of the best in Durban and perhaps even South Africa. Every dish is well composed. The menu structure is a bit tricky to come to terms with but fortunately the competent wait-staff are on hand to guide you through it. One of the waiters who has been there since the beginning, Siya, is on of the most competent I've met in the restaurant trade. Put yourself in his hands and ask him to recommend what you should try. Unfortunately, Chef Nardia has since moved on. My last two visits to Greedy Buddha were not quite as amazing as when she ran the kitchen - hence the 4 star rating for the food (and not 5 star). I hope that the kitchen has since found it's stride and that a competent chef and been appointed to fill some rather large shoes.
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  • We were very excited about going to Greedy Buddha after reading reviews on Eat Out, but we found it a little disappointing. A lot of the food was very greasy. Plus there was a lot of fried stuff and a lot of meat. If you like this, you will love this restaurant. We would have liked more veggies and non fried chicken and non fried fish.

    Big plus was the diversity of the food in the tasting menu's. One piece I absolutely loved was the duck wrap. And the service was great too.
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  • love this space immensely. Awesome staff. Great menu; the tasting menu is beyond the variety of choice and decadence. Love the options and price factor is hard to beat. The happy buddha on the wall makes me smile and Nardia is a talent of note!

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  • Chef Nardia Adams... well done.

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  • The casual atmosphere and green plastic chairs should not put you off enjoying a meal at this place! We bought our own bottle of wine (no corkage) and were encouraged to try the tasting menu of items on their Asian fusion menu. The items we were served did not disappoint, especially the crispy pork belly, the steamed buns and the ducking fantastic were winners. Do yourself a favour and dine here one evening - you will not be disappointed!

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Facilities

  • Accepts credit cards
  • Alfresco
  • Booking required
  • Child friendly
  • Dinner
  • Food
  • Functions
  • Licensed
  • Lunch
  • Parking
  • Serves food
  • Smoking
  • Takeaways
  • Vegetarian
  • Wheelchair
  • WiFi

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