Melanie here. My time spent living in the Niagara Region is quickly coming to an end, (I’m currently operating on the graduate school schedule which has me back in Oshawa for the summer) this makes me very sad and also has me extremely motivated to attempt to try all of the “good eats” in my area and return to some of my favourites before I leave.
The Smokin’ Buddha, in Port Colborne, has recently become one of these favourites, although I’ve only been there twice (and the food truck once, so 2.5 maybe?), but am hoping it hasn’t been my last. The first time I had dinner there, this was after I had tried a few items from their food truck at a Welland Food Festival, it was with my parents, who are responsible for discovering this little gem. My Dad first read about it in a “Places to Eat in Canada” book at Costco, so with him being the ultimate foodie, he planned a trip with Mom to come visit me and take us to dinner at The Smokin’ Buddha.
From the atmosphere, to the great local beer, inexpensive corking fee, and the delicious food, the first experience was an overall success. Their speciality is a Thai-Indian-Mexican fusion, three wonderfully delicious worlds colliding, if you ask me. We brought our own bottle of wine, as we had seen on their website beforehand that a corking fee was available (most restaurants in the Niagara region offer this, huge plus side to living in wine country!), and Dad ordered a local dark ale from the Silversmith Brewery (a very smooth dark lager, which consequently I am now a huge fan of, visiting the brewery this week to bring some home for Easter weekend). We ordered the “Mange Trois” which allows you to choose any 3 appetizers, we went with the Bangkok Fish Cakes, Chevon Roti, and Veggie Samosas. All of which were very tasty, the samosas were probably my favourite, but the roti was surprisingly (I say this as someone who had never tried goat before) flavourful! For our mains, I ordered the Chicken Pad Thai, Mom ordered the Yellow Curry with chicken, and Dad ordered the Chimmi Changa. We all agreed that the curry and pad thai were our favourites but if you’re into Mexican, the chimmi change didn’t disappoint (it was also a super large portion!). We finished the meal sharing a chocolate lava cake, which was pretty typical but it was warm and oh so chocolatey, so how could you not love it (!!) and Dad had a coffee which was also grade A. We left with a smile on our face and our bellies full.
Which leads me to my second visit, this past weekend, with my best friend. I wanted her to experience The Buddha and was craving their pad thai, so there I was, killing two birds with one stone. Yet again, we had a great experience! We started with the Vietnamese Flatbread, then I ordered the pad thai, this time with shrimp, and she ordered Thai Curry with chicken which was one of the weekend specials. We were both very satisfied and Lindsay even had enough to take home for leftovers, needless to say, she is now a #buddhalover.
All in all, The Smokin’ Buddha gets three thumbs up! If you’re in the area and in need of a good eat, this one won’t disappoint!