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“Only place close and open at 830. . . Did not see this coming!”

Bamboo Mexican House
Ranked #1 of 17 Restaurants in Chiang Khong
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: Mexican, Thai
Dining options: Breakfast
Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast
Reviewed 29 June 2018

We took the Slow Boat from Luang Prabang in Laos two days earlier. We arrived in Chiang Khong exhausted and made it to our Hotel about 7:00pm. After dropping off our bags and cleaning up a bit we set out for food. Many things close early in the part of town we were in so we did not have many options. According to TA, Bamboo Mexican House was open until 830. We needed to hit up an ATM and it was a little less than a kilometer away so we needed to hoof it! We arrived and were welcomed by the owner Jib. Walking around with a beer in his hand he got us settled at a table with menus. We started looking over the menu and you could tell that the pictures were ones that he had taken of actual dishes. Nothing is more annoying that stock pictures that do not represent what you will get. Frankly that is bullcrap! As I sit here writing this review I am remembering the pictures and my mouth is literally watering!
We got a couple cold beers and decided on Chips and Salsa to start. Beef Fajitas, Beef Tostadas and Chili Quesadilla. As Jib took our order he laid a bombshell on us! He had never been to Mexico or even the Southwest US. In fact he has never left Chiang Khong and taught himself to cook Mexican food with just his own tastes and the help of some guests over the years. Needless to say we became skeptical, but we had ordered and by now there was almost nothing else open.
Jib brought us our chips and salsa and that is when we knew it would be okay.
Normally we get chips and we are used to seasoning them with salt. We were spoiled in the US and Mexican is one of our favorites and everyone knows the Chips and salsa sets the stage for the whole meal. Before I asked for salt I picked up a chip and plucked it in my mouth. Holy crap! It was hot and seasoned to perfection. The salsa was in contrast cold and equally as delightful. We just did not see this coming! Another beer and the rest of the food arrived. After a couple bites we thought Jib was pulling our leg. How can you cook this good and have never been out of your hometown!? Not wanting our food to get cold we just dismissed the question as Thai magic and devoured every single bite. Maybe it was the long day, maybe the beer or maybe we were just that damn hungry but I would have to put Bamboo Mexican House at the top of the list of any Mexican food place we have been to into in Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos or Thailand. I would even stack it against many places in the US. Stop reading and go see Jib and his lovely wife!
PS - if you like it spicy, ask Jib to share some of his own grown chilis!

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Thank Let's V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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2 - 6 of 260 reviews

Reviewed 29 June 2018 via mobile

I won't quarrel with people who think this restaurant is heaven on earth in Chiangkhong, but for me, the pricing spoiled my appetite.

+ clean, simple, small venue on the main road. Great for watching cars and motorbikes whiz by
+ the older couple that runs the place is very nice. Obviously pretty sophisticated folks who have probably been abroad
+ the food was tasty, and they didn't approximate on the exotic ingredients such as cheese or sour cream

- the big minus is the tourist pricing. It's an English only menu and the prices are over the top. Many of the entrees range from ฿250 to ฿300. These prices are more than you'd expect to pay in a hole in the wall restaurant in Canada or America or England. No Thais would be tempted to try out the nice Mexican food at these prices. The cost basis is so much lower in Chiangkhong. It's no wonder that the place was empty, while the other venues popular with foreigners were not.

Disappointed. Didn't live up to the hype.

2  Thank Business-hippy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 June 2018 via mobile

Very happy with our food and lovely service. Cold beer. We didn't want to stray from Thai - but very glad we chose to come here. Delicious!!

Thank PipB1982
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 May 2018 via mobile

We had a lovely meal. Very generous portions makes it worth the price. Makes a nice change from Thai food after travelling for a while.

Thank SionG15
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 May 2018

I have to admit that I am honestly perplexed by all the glowing reviews here. I ordered the beef enchiladas. What arrived was a single enchilada with bland beef filling with a little red sauce which tasted nothing like enchilada sauce. Also on the plate was some green salad with vinnegrette dressing (Mexican?) and a couple of small pieces of boiled corn on the cob, but no rice and refried beans as you might expect. An attempt at salsa fresca was served on the side. The food neither tasted or even appeared to be Mexican. And for this, the price was 280 baht. Seriously, 280 baht for one tasteless enchilada some salad and corn on the cob. For imitation Mexican food like this in a simple open Thai shophouse restaurant facing the street, I should have walked when I saw the menu. I'm sorry but there is just no excuse for prices like this in Thailand for a little beef, one tortilla, some salad and a piece of corn none of which bore any semblance to Mexican taste. Even a bottle of returnable bottle of Singha water costing less than 3 baht was priced at 20 baht. Perhaps not surprisingly, we were the only customers as we saw others have a look at the menu outside and walk on.

I really wanted to enjoy this place having seen the excellent reviews here for some time now and was looking forward to having a chance to try it when I was in Chiang Khong, but wow, what a disappointment. Based on the prices charged, the "atmosphere" and the lame attempt at Mexican cooking and presentation, I cannot think of any way I cannot give this review a one star rating.

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4  Thank tookay
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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