Budatai – San Juan, Puerto Rico

Budatai - San Juan, Puerto Rico
What I Ordered

Review By: Julianne Di –

My sister and I decided to go for lunch and separated from our significant others for the afternoon. We picked Budatai because it had good reviews and it looked interesting. The menu was a fusion of Asian and Spanish dishes and I love fusion places (if you haven’t guessed by now). I feel like a fusion restaurant almost guarantees that you are going to have something you never had before and it gives me ideas on mixing up some different cultural dishes in my own kitchen.

We decided to keep lunch small and share everything that we ordered. We had to take the elevator up the restaurant which was a little scary. I was afraid that Budatai wasn’t going to be what we expected. I was wrong.

Out of the elevator I was greeted by two glass doors and an amazing Buddha shrine and I was suddenly really excited to be here. The restaurant was beautiful, with big glass windows and an amazing view of the street and beach. It started to rain heavily while we were there and it was almost really relaxing listening to the rain and sitting by the window.

We started our meal with the Duck Croquetas which were my favorite part of the meal (outside of the mayo based drizzle sauce). I know it’s weird to hate mayo like I do but it’s almost everywhere and it can be a big hassle to avoid. It was hard for me to get pieces of the croqueta that didn’t have mayo on it but when I did it was worth it. The brown dipping sauce at the bottom was so delicious and paired well with the pieces of shredded duck meat inside the fried ball. I was sorry there were only three on the plate.

Next, was the lo mein and a side of duck fat potatoes. The lo mein was okay, not a dish that I would try again but I wasn’t upset with it. The noodles were delicious and so were all of the pieces of vegetables in it, but I was a little confused about the fried chicken pieces in it. Sometimes there was a piece that was pretty good and then sometimes one that tasted a little strange.

The duck fat potatoes were delicious, but how could anything cooked in any type of animal fat taste badly? It was like a potato ball with a panko crust over it and some crumbled cheese at the top. It was really delicious but not what I was expecting. All of the delicious dishes here had way too small of a serving.

Last we shared a five spice crème brulee. It was very light and you could really get a taste of the five spices. This is one of the best crème brulee flavors that I have ever had (and you know by now that I’m an expert!).

I really enjoyed lunch here and wished that I had come here for dinner with the rest of the group so I could have tasted more dishes! This place is great for décor and food and prices were nothing different outside of the rest of the area.

Everything in this tourist spot is more expensive but not unaffordable. The experience here was worth it.

Make a reservation at Budatai.