There is a small restaurant tucked away in University Landing on College Rd in Wilmington called Bdobo Mongolian Grill that I simply had to tell you about. If you’re in Wilmington or the surrounding areas, it’s well worth your time to check this place out. Bdobo is a Mongolian grill that is an all-you-can-eat affair… and let’s face it – some of you, like me, can really pack it away when it comes to buffets!
I was first introduced to Mongolian BBQ waayyyyy back in my days as a student at Campbell University. My friend, Jimmy, was introduced to it first, and took me to a restaurant named Bali Hai in Raleigh to try it for myself. Needless to say, I’ve been hooked ever since!
When you’re first seated in Bdobo, the staff will offer you a choice of egg drop or hot & sour soup, fried or white rice, and a small plate with sesame bread. The buffet line is filled with various vegetables as well as pork, chicken, beef, shrimp and calamari. After you fill your bowl with all the vegetables and meats you’ll want, you then move over to the sauces and ladle out which sauces you’d like on your dish. The sign at the sauce area suggests you use at least six or more ladles of sauces. The chef will then take your bowl and toss it onto the round grill where he cooks it up for you in a flash. You can go back to the buffet and do this over and over again, but I’ve found I simply can’t do more than two trips.
For me, the best tasting dishes are the ones where you use the most colorful vegetables on the bar; purple cabbage, carrots, broccoli, bean sprouts, tomatoes, squash, zucchini, green peppers, etc. All the meats are tasty so, in my opinion, you can’t go wrong there.
Try as I might, I’ve never been able to duplicate the exact taste of Bali Hai in other Mongolian restaurants. I think the obvious difference is in the way the sauces are prepared. Most all establishments of the Mongolian persuasion allow you to make your own sauce for your dish. Being somewhat handicapped in the kitchen area doesn’t lend to my culinary expertise – heck, I once set the fire alarm off in the house while boiling potatoes, so I’m not one to normally venture into becoming a sauce connoisseur and whipping a batch to perfection right off the cuff. I believe I have, however, come very close to the taste I remember. Here’s my recipe for pouring on the sauce once I have my bowl filled:
3 ladles Mongolian Sauce
3 ladles Teriyaki Sauce
1 ladle Curry Sauce
1 ladle Garlic Sauce
3 ladles Soy Sauce
1 ladle Hot Oil Sauce
If you’re one of these people who like your food really spicy you can opt for more ladles of hot oil sauce, but since I don’t want to have to call the fire department when I go to the bathroom, one is usually enough for me.
When you make your sauce, you can obviously use whatever mixture you’d like. While I was there, this one lady in line was telling the person behind her (rather enthusiastically, I might add) that she uses a ladle of everything in her bowl. For some that may be fine, but it seems to me a ladle of sweet water and a ladle of hot oil might not mix, but who am I to judge?
The staff is extremely friendly, and if you have questions, they are more than happy to help you out.
I’d definitely recommend trying Bdobo out the next time you’re in the area and have a craving for something a little different. Who knows, you might just find your new favorite dinner spot!