About buku: Global Street Food
Located at the corner of Wilmington and Davie Streets in the heart of downtown Raleigh, bu•ku is a local restaurant that tells a global story. The name "bu•ku" itself is an international slang twist on the phrase, "Merci, beaucoup" meaning, "Thank you very much." Inspired by the pushcarts of street vendors across the globe, our chefs harvest an array of unique and distinct flavors and present them authentically, in a virtual kaleidoscope of plates. The common link: these are foods that people love. Working within different regional traditions, our menu brings together complex and flavorful dishes that have been honed over generations. Foods like Filipino Lumpia, Jamaican Lamb Patties and Chinese Steamed Buns can be found on the street corners of Manila, Kingston and Beijing. We strive to convey the immediate thrill a traveler feels eating foods like these as they first cross over the cart and exchange hands into the urban setting.
Global, International, Asian, South American
Hours of Operation:
Serving our Full Menu
Friday & Saturday: 11am-12am
Sunday Brunch Buffet: 10am-3pm
Sunday Dinner: 5pm-10pm
$30 and under
AMEX, MasterCard, Visa
We would love to host your next event! Please ask Katherine, our Events Coordinator, for an Events Package and any additional information you need.
Complimentary valet every day after 5pm and during Sunday Brunch. Lunch parking is available in the public deck.
Enter the City Center Parking Deck from Wilmington Street
Take elevator to ground floor; exit out at revolving doors turn left and enter double doors on the left at the corner of Davie and Wilmington.
Private Party Facilities:
Private and semi-private dining rooms are available for parties and special occasions up to 150 guests. Full-facility rentals are available for up to 293 guests.
Private Party Contact:
Katherine Darden: 9198346963x
Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Entertainment, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking Area, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, Smoking Area, Takeout, View, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine, Wine Bar
Special Events & Promotions:
We would love to help you plan your next event. Our private and semi-private dining rooms seat parties of 10-150 guests and we have a virtual kaleidoscope of menu options for you to choose from! Please speak with Katherine, our Events Coordinator, for more information.
buku: Global Street Food Ratings and Reviews
We were looking for somewhere to grab br ...
We were looking for somewhere to grab brunch before leaving Raleigh and this was a perfect walking distance from our hotel. It wasn't very busy but it was pretty chaotic because they're not organized very well (made to order items and toasters should be on the ends of the table lines, not in the middle). I was craving bacon but the omelet line was so backed up and no one even had room to move so I could grab some, so I had to go back after a bit. Our server was sweet but awful, we were at a small 2-person table and I was done with my second plate (including bacon!) before the first was taken away. We had to flag her down for drink refills. Overall though, it was very good, just the organization was a bit off for Sunday brunch, especially at the price point. But if we are back in Raleigh, we may try it for drinks or dinner sometime.
The waiter was excellent (wish I remembe ...
The waiter was excellent (wish I remembered his name). Very careful with explanations, wine pairings, etc. Very attentive to food sensitivities. The food was excellent. It was a bit noisy for me, but most restaurants seem to be. It appears to be a trend.
Every time we go to buku we have a wonde ...
Every time we go to buku we have a wonderful experience. While we have our go-to favorites we like to try new things, this time it was the Aloo Chana Chaat... a spicy potato cake that was very different and very good. And the drinks are good and original as well, definitly want to have another Strawbanero Sling! Server was -- as usual -- very attentive and professional.
Left halfway through dinner. Our sushi ...
Left halfway through dinner. Our sushi roll (caterpillar roll) was good. The pan seared dumplings were adequate. The mussels ended up making my wife sick and our pork buns were sent back twice (once for a bug and second time for being large pieces of grisly fat without any meat). Yes I understand it's pork belly but it was extremely low quality. Server was kind and tried but poor performance by the kitchen and no apology from management despite bringing us the check was unforgivable. Will never go back! Avoid
Food was extremely disappointing. Steak ...
Food was extremely disappointing. Steak was very fatty - not a $34 cut of meat! Pad Thai sauce was very over seasoned. Sickeningly sweet/tangy. Very little chicken added. Sea bass was a bit dry. Overall not a great experience.
First visit for a birthday Sunday brunch ...
First visit for a birthday Sunday brunch. Very good selection . Enough vegetarian items for the non meat eater. Great sweet potato salad. One member of our party opted for an omlette with quite an assortment of ingredients. There is a patio, but weather too humid the day we went.
We went for Sunday Brunch. The food was ...
We went for Sunday Brunch. The food was excellent and there was a wide variety of choices. The omelet station was fast and the chefs were very attentive. All in all we had a very good meal without ever feeling rushed.
BuKu never disappoints! The food is amaz ...
BuKu never disappoints! The food is amazing, no matter what you try, the drinks are original and the restaurant is chic and fun. I went with a large group and we were easily accomodated and had no problems getting a reasonably timed reservation. I love BuKu for a special occasion or just a tasty meal out!
We have gone to Buku many times and this ...
We have gone to Buku many times and this time did not disappoint. The table shared several wonderful appetizers. The only issue was one of our group ordered "vegetarian" ribs and she received normal pork ribs, another ordered salmon rare and it was more cooked than it should have been. The waiter immediately fixed the situation with no issues what so ever. This is our "go to" when we are taking someone new to dinner.
We were at the restaurant for a business ...
We were at the restaurant for a business meeting. We did not appreciate stepping away to the bathroom and having our portfolios removed from the table and the table cleared off of all other items. We felt as if we were being rushed off and that our business was no longer needed.
Was in Raleigh visiting wife's relatives ...
Was in Raleigh visiting wife's relatives and decided this would be an interesting spot to try for dinner. Arrived after 9pm and there was plenty of space and plenty quiet. Waiter was super helpful with our questions and sharing his preferences. We ordered a few small plates and shared an entree. Half of the small plates were very good and half we so-so. Entree was delicious as was the sake. Would definitely go again.
Another enjoyable dinner at Buku! Food ...
Another enjoyable dinner at Buku!
Food was delicious as always.
Waitstaff seemed a bit inexperienced.
Recognizing it was a birthday and bringing an extra dessert (complete with candle) was a sweet gesture, but gastronomic overkill, given that we'd already ordered another dessert.
We had a great time at Buku last Saturd ...
We had a great time at Buku last Saturday. Our waiter, Justin, was attentive, witty, and very knowledgeable. We enjoyed the food and our wine selection worked well with our food. Justin recommendation was right on the mark. My salmon was overdone. I could have sent it back but I didn't want to ruin the mood and flow of our table. Our friends were at Buku for the first time and they had a good time.
My first experience at Buku was incredib ...
My first experience at Buku was incredible! The server was knowledgable about the menu and wine list. She offered fabulous recommendations and was attentive to our requests. I have dairy and gluten allergies, which can make eating out very difficult. I was so pleased with the gluten free menu, and our server made sure to accommodate my dairy-free needs. I had dinner with a friend and we shared the grilled pineapple-coconut gazpacho, tuna tataki roll, and Korean BBQ bibimbap. Everything was absolutely delicious! I will surely return.
We reserved a table for eight . We arriv ...
We reserved a table for eight . We arrived right on time. We took advantage of valet parking only five dollars minus tip. Parking downtown Raleigh anywhere convenient is at least five dollars. We were seated at a table that the sun was in the eyes of one of our guest. They quickly prepared another table for us! Service was excellent! Our waiter knew about everything on the menu and gave great recommendation. We tried several of the small plates. A couple of the finicky eaters even stepped out of their comfort zone to try some. Beer and Wine list were pretty good. Noise level was fine until a party of six sat next to us that had just left from some event.
The food was really good, service was excellent, my group thought the atmosphere was very nice. A little pricey, 8 big plates one for each and we all shared 7 or 8 small plates, a couple of adult beverages for all but one. The men finished their plates and the women could only eat half of their large plate.(bill was just under $400) No one had room for desert! It's a shame, as good as the food tasted I was curious to taste the desert with a coffee. Well that will be for our next visit. A couple less small plates and room for dessert! Enjoy!
Buku was very highly recommended to me a ...
Buku was very highly recommended to me and I especially enjoy venues with small plates and modern/trendy fusion cuisine. But I left feeling a bit underwhelmed. The service was great, the wine was delicious, the ambiance was perfect....the food just did not hit on all notes. We tried several small plate options and just felt overall that there was a lack of flavor. We liked the naan bread appetizer, but were not impressed by the BuKu roll that we shared, or either of the dumpling options. We had planned to order more, but decided against it. Perhaps there were other options on the menu that would have changed our overall impression, as everyone really seems to love this restaurant.
I love coming here have been for a long ...
I love coming here have been for a long time. Lately it seems like all the servers are new and really don't pay attention to detail. My soup was brought out with no utensils to serve myself with. Normally they served the first portion this time they left it on the table and left i had to flag someone down after a few minutes to ask for serving tools to serve my self. My soup was then cold. My drinks were not refilled without me asking for it. Its sad this place was one of my favorites but it seems to be going down hill with the service.. The food is still great though.
Brunch was fantastic! They had a wonder ...
Brunch was fantastic! They had a wonderful variety of items on the buffet, including delicious fried chicken & southern sides. The price was reasonable, based on my experience with other buffets with similar offerings. Our server was attentive and personable. We saw several groups and the restaurant accomodated them with ease.
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