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
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.
We love this place. Waitresses are promp ...
We love this place. Waitresses are promp and they know the menu so coukd answer out pickey questions. Food was outstanding. I am in love with their pad thai (enough so that I went back lady night to get it fir take-out). Outside dining is wonderful and comfortable. Loved every minute if it!
This is our second visit and we were jus ...
This is our second visit and we were just as pleased as the first time, The menu is eclectic- with plenty of excellent culinary fare for the vegetarian and non- vegetarian alike.
The service both times was exceptional- the staff was knowledgable, adept yet not pushy or overbearing- I do wish I could remember the server's name this last time- he was truly excepetional
We went to Buku for lunch at the recomme ...
We went to Buku for lunch at the recommendation of a friend. The small plates were good, but I thought the large plates and big bowls on the menu were dinner portions and could have been scaled down. I found the food to be hyped and overpriced for their interpretation of street food.
We had an early dinner pre-show at Red H ...
We had an early dinner pre-show at Red Hat. Our server took a step above and beyond and helped me find a cushion to sit on so I could reach my bowl (I'm short, and bowl was large). I took a chance that night and ordered something different, which I wasn't crazy about, but everything I have eaten there on previous occasions has been great. The crème brulee trio, however, was amazing! My boyfriend did enjoy his entrée, and the empanada appetizer was great. Next time I may just try a few small plates or get the steak frittes as usual.
Might have been the best meal I ever had ...
Might have been the best meal I ever had. I had the duck adobo and it was perfection, the duck was deliciously balanced by the papaya and lemongrass salad. My husband had the ramen and it was also very good, as well as the tuna tataki roll and lumpia. The cocktail, beer and wine lists were quirky and well curated. If you are looking for something different in Raleigh, this is your place. Our sever, Nathan was great, friendly and knowledgeable about the menu. Only downside was that it was very warm inside, but that may have been our table that was by the window kind of under a false ceiling. Beyond that...this is going to be our new date spot.
I have been to buku several times and ev ...
I have been to buku several times and everything from food to service has been very good. This time things were slightly off all the around but I think that stems mainly from the server. Everything sort of gets influenced by the server. Took him a while to get to us, recommended a glass of wine that wasn't on the list and told me the dish I was ordering would be bland without a protein (which I then added). Then once the dish arrived it had a different protein than I asked for... and the server was MIA again. Everyone else had their food so I decided to eat what I was given anyway - and I just put the protein aside. He was right... it was bland. Once the server reappeared, he told me it was the kitchen that had made the mistake and he was glad for it because what I got was better than what I ordered. Huh? No apology? No offer to fix it? No discount on the bill? I'll give them another shot in the future but won't order the Pad Thai again and may ask for a different server if I end up in the same server's section.
We came here late after one of our child ...
We came here late after one of our children's high school graduation downtown! The service was excellent and even our picky eaters and celiac family members left full and happy! Thank you for a wonderful post-graduation dinner for my family!!!
The place wasent busy at all however, th ...
The place wasent busy at all however, the service was not great. The waiter was a very nice and helpful, just slow. The dining room set up was weird with tables squished into places people walk through causing people to have to scoot their seats when 2 or more people walk together. Was there for restaurant week, and had the noodles and lamb chops...for $30 a plate, it was not close to worth it. The noodles were ramen noodles, and if they were home made, the chef stole the recipe from the from the guy who invented ramen noodles. The brunch there is great, but I will not be going back for anything else.
Service made the day
Went during restaurant week which can be hectic. Food was very good except for the Eton mess dessert. Service by Justin was great. He was very knowledgeable and professional. Knew about all the options wine and food. Accommodated a gluten free diner very well. We went on a Thursday night where there was some Raleigh music event so parking was tough. When we arrived at the restaurant after parking , we discovered that there was complimentary valet parking.. Buku should advise diners of this very very attractive feature for those of us who are hesitant to come to downtown because of the parking.
We were there to celebrate my son's high ...
We were there to celebrate my son's high school graduation. We had friends with us and the food was excellent and the service was top-notch. We spent two hours on the patio eating, drinking, and celebrating. We appreciate the patience and care of the folks at
Buku. Really topnotch.
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