Featured photo: Bamboo Asian Café opened on July 18, 2016 at Margaritaville Resort Casino Bossier City. The restaurant serves a mix of Vietnamese and Chinese cuisine.
The latest addition to Shreveport-Bossier’s casino dining offerings, Bamboo Asian Café opened this week at Margaritaville Resort Casino in Bossier City. The restaurant is located in a space that previously housed the Margaritaville Restaurant bar, just steps from the entrance to Jimmy’s Seafood and Steak. The space has been dramatically transformed and now comes off as a modern Asian bistro – everything is crimson, black and white – with a bar that runs the length of the dining room. Chef Frederick Ngo, a highly-regarded chef of Vietnamese background who has built a following of regular patrons at Jimmy’s Seafood and Steak, oversees the operation.
On the menu you’ll find Vietnamese favorites including eight varieties of pho, vermicelli noodle salads and rice platters. Chinese options include several varieties of fried rice and American Chinese staples like General Tso’s chicken and orange beef. The place is open very late – until 2 a.m. on weekends and midnight on Mondays and Tuesdays.
I have eaten my way through most of the Vietnamese items on the menu. Favorites so far include steak tartare (pictured, $7) and pho dac biet ($15), a bowl of pho so filled with brisket, tendon and meatballs that it felt like the pho equivalent of a meat lover’s pizza. The pho broth at Bamboo Asian Café is outstanding; when I asked about it, I was told that it’s the result of beef bones simmering for six hours. Chef Ngo insisted that I peek into the kitchen, where a massive boiling station is always filled with simmering pho stock.
While the current menu is limited to the basics of popular Vietnamese fare, it’s not hard to imagine a not-to-distant future when this talented chef could flesh out the menu to further illustrate his mastery of Vietnamese cooking. For the time being, it’s never a bad thing to have a great spot for pho (and, absolutely, the occasional late-night war council meeting with General Tso) that is centrally located, inviting and open until 2 a.m. on weekends.
If you love local food, consider downloading the Shreveport-Bossier Convention and Tourist Bureau’s new brochure Eat Here: A Food Lover’s Guide to Shreveport-Bossier.