The Bird’s Nest

Feb 15 2009

Chinese buffet

16 Stavanger Drive
709-739-5188

47 responses so far

  1. Very good for a buffet. Service was excellent – very prompt. I liked that the drink is included with the meal. The cheesecake dessert was very good as well.

  2. Food was OK at best, atmosphere felt more like a cheap cafeteria than a restaurant.. I would not go back or recommend

  3. The food quality was so poor that grocery store microwave Chinese food would of been better and the desserts were a joke. As for the atmosphere…it made me think I was in a prison cafeteria out of some post apocalypse movie.

    Will NEVER go back or give anyone a recommendation to go there.

  4. Amazing decor, finally, a Chinese Buffet with some style! The food was the best I’ve ever had a a Buffet restaurant (I have lived in Vancouver, Toronto, and Calgary). The best improvement to St. John’s this year!

  5. Great service, beautiful setting, delicious food… absolutely perfect!

  6. Food was good for the most part. Was impressed with the more original items you can’t get at other buffets, but the standard items were just ok. The big problem is the decor. The whole place looks cheap cheap CHEAP. (and no that isn’t a pun on “Bird’s Nest”) The paintings on the wall and the light fixtures were a good start but it looks like the budget ran out there. Plain plastic white tables, plastic chairs, plain worn white commercial flooring and that’s it – ugh.

  7. The decor is hilarious,I’ll have to go back again with my camera. You sit at the little plastic table and wonder if you should eat or play with building blocks! Beyond that,the food wasn’t horrible,enough things on the menu to make up a decent meal. It is definitely better than that other new buffet City Light.

  8. The food is pretty similar to what the now-defunct Emerald Palace had been serving in recent years, but it’s a bit more expensive and the atmosphere is not great. I wouldn’t go back.

  9. Excellent service and friendly atmosphere. (^.^)
    Definatly the best chinese food in Newfoundland!

  10. Walking in I felt like I was back in high school. The cheap looking white plastic tables and chairs and lack of any feeling was not welcoming. As for the food, the mussels were like little rubber balls, the selection on the buffet was poor,and being there between one and two on a Sunday afternoon, you would think they would be filling the empty trays quickly. The service wasn’t too bad but when the server asked how everything was I told her it was just okay and I wouldn’t be back or recommend it to my friends, she just said, ” Oh, that’s too bad. Have a nice day.” She didn’t ask what the problem was in order to improve. Not a great experience.

  11. When you tell a server that you won’t be back,you have obviously made up your mind,so why should he/she even waste another minute trying to change it? I know that if I make up my mind that I will not be returning somewhere,I don’t even want the server to try to do damage control.Not to mention,people use the “I’ll never come back” line all the time to try to get the meal for free.If it’s that bad,write it off,don’t return,don’t recommend.

  12. Satisfactory food (tasty and inexpensive), but the decor is somewhat lacking. Definately not somewhere to “dine”, but OK for a quick lunch/dinner; good service, friendly staff.

  13. This has got to be the worse Chinese food I have ever tasted. I couldn’t even eat the rice or noodles which had zero taste. Microwave chinese food has more taste. The sweet/sour sauce didn’t even taste good!!! The decor was terrible… I’ve seen better high school cafeteria’s…. Never going back!!!

  14. I’d like to give this half a star if possible butI’ll just give the lowest possible. The food is bland and tasteless, just terrible really even when taking into account that it is Canadian-Chinese food and that for some reason Canadians seem to like bland/flavourless/fried Chinese foods.
    I love authentic Chinese food and well this is not it. Decor is nice although not comfortable. Give it a pass, you are not missing anything.

  15. great food,good service, free refills,very clean,good price.

  16. Service was horrible – maybe I just drew the short straw on my first visit. Not a smile or hello when asked what we wanted to drink and then wasted pop on the table and my hand when the drink was delivered and then simply walked away. This was the only time we saw anyone at the table. Atmosphere felt like an IKEA cafeteria – white plastic type deal. Food was okay I guess but I will not be returning.

  17. Food was the pitts for a Chinese Buffett.I had better from a can.
    Plastic Tables? NOW THAT is CHEAP as CHEAP can be!
    Totally disgusted. ONly thing good was the waitress, pleasant and very mannerly. I was quite disappointed overall and will NOT be returning!
    Jeff from Fort McMurray, Alberta

  18. So I know it’s a buffet and the whole point is to serve myself but the guy comes over when were all done and asks if we would like to try some cheesecake ice cream. It really sounded like he was offering to get it for us, which I thought was strange, but when my girlfriend said yes hes like “it’s right over there” then walks away. Couldn’t he have said “be sure to try some of our cheesecake ice cream” or something like that.

  19. I was pleasantly surprised. Yes, the decor is plain and simple (but CLEAN, I might add). But the food was exceptionally tasty, with more than a decent selection; service was excellent – prompt and very courteous; price is quite reasonable when you consider that the soft drinks and coffee are included.

    I wouldn’t send someone there for a cozy romantic date. However, after (or during) a long day shopping at Stavanger Drive – if you have any money left – it’s a place to go for a reasonably priced, good quality meal, where you can get in and out in fairly quickly.

  20. Good service, OK Food, too many tables and not enough suggestion in food variety makes it 3/5.

  21. There is not much else they should say to you really. We are past the generation of complaining. Complaining this day in age is going to get you nowhere. No one cares anymore because people are so full of crap that it’s all completely irrelevant. If you didn’t like it, you didn’t like it…go somewhere else. They are not going to waste their time discussing your nitpicking opinion(s) or disgusts about their restaurant when they could be seating other customers and making money. Get over it…go somewhere else if you wish to…you’ll definitely go back though…maybe just to stick something like that in their face again or try to find more things wrong. I don’t think the source of that problem was the restaurant…

  22. I’ve heard too many negitive things about this resturant. The food is horrible, the decor is very tacky and the service is nothing to boast about. I won’t waste my hard earned money going to this resturant. Instead I will go to the place where my family & I dine reguarly . Super service, lovely decor and reasonable prices..

  23. Wellll by like……This place is the biggest joke on on the go. What a rousty ol joint. Disgusting,overpriced,No joke on the one star rating id give it none if i could. I wouldn’t eat here for free.
    It’s a risk.

    …IT IS A RISK.

  24. Not good… at all… I had some hope for this place, but was terribly disappointed. The food was mostly flavorless, mostly deep fried (I know I know, its canadian chinese food) and there was very little selection. The only real veggies I could find were at the salad bar. If youre looking for cheap canadian chinese food, go to the food court in the mall, it is WAY better. The food was not good quality. The fish that was not deep fried, tasted boiled and bland. I would not go back. If you want actual delicious chinese food, spend your money at Magic Wok…

    One bright point, the place was clean and the service was good, I will give credit where credit is due!

  25. I love the reply’s. I so agree with the two comments above. I personally know the owners, and I have never met anyone more hardworking, kind and generous. They don’t need your nick picking crap! I love the food there, and I know I have a great palate. I’ve been around the world, so I recognize good food.

    I recommend the restaurant. I have two young children, so the furniture works great for us. I don’t have to be careful with table cloths, chair fabric etc. It’s clean, the food is delicious and the waiters can’t do enough for you.

  26. This is ‘just ok’ for a Canadian-style chinese buffet. Nothing special, but alright for a quick bite if you’re hungry. I’ve been twice and will not likely go again. Anyone who is a real foodie won’t be happy – but at the same time, we’re really lacking in choices for authentic Chinese food in this city. I think Magic Wok is the closest you can get.

    It’s definitely very casual, cheap decor but the red walls warm it up a bit – still, certainly not the ambiance you’d want for a nice supper out.

    I’ve found the service to be quite good and friendly both times.

  27. Oh My Stars ………….. Just plain gross . Someone should tell them about MSG . The food was bland and over cooked . Went on a Tuesday night for dinner . I think a glass of water with some oil in it may have been better . The deserts from costco cut in half we the best part of the meal . Staff were nice and the place was clean . Strange to see so much IKEA furniture on the island in one place . Not a good selection if do not eat meat . Cost about 35 for 2 and not worth it .

  28. Some of the Food There Is The Best Chinese Food I Every Ate And The People There Are So Nice There Wonton Soup Rocks

  29. A group of colleagues and I were looking for a place to have lunch….great place….buffet was excellent…lots of choice…place was spotless….service good….lots of space……we had a great chat….and were able to order….talk….pay….and get back to work on time…..well fed and satisfied…what more could you ask for!!!

    Excellent….will definitely recommend and will visit again!!!

  30. I have to be honest, I haven’t been there in a while so there may have been changes. I went there one evening with my wife and 2 kids and I found that the food was ok, certainly not the best chinese I ever had but to tell you the truth I have a hard time finding realy good chinese food in Newfoundland anyway.

    I thought the place was kind of like a food court and expensive considering my kids eat about a 1/2 plate of stuff each and have to pay full buffet. I think they should have a child price…that is just my opinion.

    Overall I woul dgive the place 3 stars because it wasn’t as horrible as some people say but I don’t think I will go back or reccomend anyone to go there…that being said, I know some people who swear by the place and love it. To each their own I guess

  31. Oh good grief! the biggest problem here is that there is not an option to give less then one star rating, let’s say if I could, I would. The atmosphere, oh yes, did I say what atmosphere? because there is none. Seriously there is better atmosphere in a school cafeteria, they could not have chosen any worse tables and chairs. The food was limited in choice and no great taste. The place is just one big open room, yes, I am back to lack of atmosphere I said the food is poor and over priced for what you get. Also, if parents are not going to control their kids, there are limits where staff should intervene and say something. I witnessed an unruly kid who’s height put his mouth even with the the top of the counter, all the while he looked in at the food he had this agressive cough. Witnessing no one do anything about this gross indecency was enough to remove any possibility there would be to remotely enjoy the place. Do yourself a favor and spend your money elsewhere.

  32. Overall, I enjoy the food at the Bird’s Nest. There are a great variety of dishes. My only complaint is that once or twice the beef and broccoli was a little over cooked. Otherwise I feel it compares favorably to the other Chinese buffet’s in town. Also, as others have mentioned, the drinks are included in the meal which is a plus.

  33. First off, if you’re going to eat here you should leave any food snobbery at the door. It’s just a cheap Chinese-Canadian buffet, and they make no attempt to hide this. That said, it’s the best cheap Chinese-Canadian buffet in the city.

    I’m seeing these comments about how all they serve is deep fried garbage and I’m wondering if these people have actually eaten at this restaurant or if they’re just trolling because they’re not happy about another business going up in Big Boxville. Quite the opposite is true. The Bird’s Nest seems to really make an effort to keep deep fried junk off the buffet table. In fact, the only deep fried food I can think of is at the clearly marked kids’ section (chicken nuggets, fries, etc), other than the egg rolls of course, although they do offer spring rolls as an alternative. They mostly offer meat, chicken, and seafood dishes with generous helpings of vegetables (but not to the point where they skimp on the meat like most Chinese takeouts). My personal favorite is the beef curry. The meat can be a bit overcooked sometimes, but like I said, this place is not a fine dining establishment nor is it trying to be. There’s no reason why you cant go here and have a relatively healthy meal. Also, their soup is delicious.

    This is basically an excellent place for a quick lunch, and not a place for a night out. Like others have said, there’s not much in terms of decor or atmosphere, however the food is excellent compared to the other Chinese-Canadian buffets in town.

  34. The only place in St john’s that offers dim sum on the weekends that I have found. And the dim sum is excellent! I haven’t tried the buffet but it looks good too! Things are very clean :)

  35. The food is passable, but I would probably recommend that you head somewhere else if you are looking for a good buffet. As other comments suggest, the decor is unpleasant.

    I have only eaten there once, and while I didn’t have a bad experience at all, it didn’t make enough of an impression on me for me to go back. I personally prefer Golden Phoenix near the mall for selection, and I found the food at China House on Torbay Road better for taste.

    If you’re looking for some Chinese buffet then by all means give it a try, it just wasn’t my cup of tea.

  36. just finished “eating” at this restaurant. the absolute worst food we have ever eaten in this city. we’ve mean ive been to some bad Chinese joints but this despicable place couldn’t even get chicken balls right. were sick, we feel violated, were disgusted we had to pay for it. our mission is to ensure anyone we even remotely know will never have to go through what we just did. this is the first step.

    whats worse is the waitress who was the bomb (and we told her so) has apparently told the owner they receive numerous complaints about the quality of the food but the owner neglects to make changes. stupid!

    oh and we suspect any of the good reviews that are written on this site have to be written by the owner or some affiliated with the owner because there is no way anyone would enjoy what we just went through.

  37. Ate there last night. The chicken was hard, the “mixed vegetables” were nothing more than a few pieces of sad looking, wilted broccoli. Some of the food had been there so long it had developed a brown crust on the top from the heat lamps. I’ve eaten at a lot of buffets but this was very low quality and not worth the money at all. I won’t go back.

  38. A response to the person who wrote….”oh and we suspect any of the good reviews that are written on this site have to be written by the owner or some affiliated with the owner because there is no way anyone would enjoy what we just went through.”

    WRONG!!!! I am a paying customer who has NO AFFILIATION to this restaurant or staff and woners, and I quite like it along with my friends that go with us. I don’t want the owners to change the food at all which is the main reason we are returning customers. Jason, don’t insult the people that want to make a good review, It is based on an opinion and everyone has their own.

  39. Went to this place when it first opened and have not returned. Maybe they’ve improved since, but this place scarred me as a child. The first thing I look for when I eat a chinese buffet is the chicken balls, which in this case, happened to be chicken nuggets from Costco. In fact half their buffet appears to have been straight from the Costco frozen food section. The question is, how is this place still in business?

  40. I was shocked to learn about the reviews and just had to come on here to set things straight. They say one that is satisfied will tell 2 or 3 people while someone not satisfied will tell 12 or more. Obviously a lot of people think Chicken Balls and Chicken Fried Rice is Chinese food and expensive decor makes food taste better and healthier!

    The decor there is simple for a reason. If you’ve ever been to a proper authentic Chinese buffet in any major metropolitan Chinatown you’d know that even the Bird’s Nest is rather “done up”. I’ve been to the other competition to find food particles in the cracks of the table finish, stains on the textured walls and carpet that hasn’t been cleaned in several changes of management and the telling palpitations of my heart stressing out with MSG attack. If their decor was white I’m afraid at what I’d see in the dim light. At least I know their grub is MSG free, their decor is spotless. The floor is one of those styles of tile that is prone to black soled shoes.

    The food is beyond exceptional and I’ll admit that I eat there at least twice a month and have been since they opened. If you want to fall in love like I have here’s a suggestion or three…

    Ginger Beef!

    One layer of Kung Pao chicken with a layer of Cream Curry Chicken on top of it. The greatest meal possible in this galaxy. The pinnacle of the synthesis of creation and evolution. Man’s and the Universe’s greatest achievement!

    Rosemary Garlic Lamb… I normally hate Lamb and I generally hate Curry but I love their Cream Curry Chicken and, somehow, Rosemary Garlic Lamb is in my top.

    To heck with Chicken Balls and Rice… To hell with MSG!
    Bird’s Nest is culinary heaven in an affordable, fun, friendly meal. I hope more people get to know their grub better!

  41. Lark, I don’t think Noel was stating your opinion was WRONG. He was stating that his opinion was different than others had posted. There is no need for bashing on a board where people should be free to express what they like or don’t like.

  42. Everything about this place is just awful, I don’t understand how this place is still open. Since my unfortunate visit I have spoken with many people who’ve had the same horrible experience that I did. The decor was a joke, the food was inedible and the service was poor.

    It is so obvious to me that this restaurants review page has been hijacked by the owners. The only good reviews are often left minutes apart. There are even cases of people getting extremely defensive about negative reviews, which is such an unprofessional and childish way of responding to negative feedback about your business.

  43. The people who think the owners or owner affiliates are the ones writing the Good reviews are hilarious.. Delusional much?
    The Birds Nest is some of the best Chinese food I’ve ever eaten and since moving away from Newfoundland I have yet to find a place with Kung Pao Chicken that great!
    And the person who said the Chicken Balls were chicken nuggets from Costco blew my mind. Clearly you did not look around in any form, the chicken nuggets are in the Kids section. The “Chicken Balls” are not necessarily ‘Balls’ and instead fresh breaded chicken instead of the Dohey stuff you saw at Emerald Palace.
    The only down fall would have to be the “Cafeteria” like feel but I’ve also seen much worse.

    So to recap. No affiliation with the restaurant. It’s awesome.

  44. I think we have a person on the forum who works at a competing restaurant clearly. I enjoy the food. Maybe I should post a picture so you would know I am not the owner or an affiliate, then you could pop by and say “Hi” sometime. :) I eat there every week and I love it.

  45. I’m starting to wonder whether the people giving this place 5s have ever tasted decent Chinese food.

    The best thing about The Bird’s Nest is the peanut butter balls from Costco.

    Ed, try New Chinatown if you want authentic Kung Pao.

  46. Hi folks, I was just browsing this site and stumbled upon these restaurant reviews. I felt obliged to sign up as a member of this web site and post a comment on The Bird’s Nest restaurant. I have been there once, the food, the staff, and the atmosphere are all far from impressive. I was there in Summer and the air conditioning was up far too high for Newfoundland’s climate making the place very cold for an August day. I found the food very lacking in the flavour department. And, to top it off, the owners of this establishment obvously need a lesson in Canadian/Newfoundland laws. I am totally blind and I have a Seeing Eye dog who travels everywhere with me, Seeing Eye dogs are permitted in all public places by law in this province. I entered the restaurant, ordered their buffet, and part way through my meal, a staff member, I’m asumming the restaurant’s owner first asked me if I wanted to move to another part of the restaurant because she was concerned about the presence of my dog, I said no, then she asked me to leave, I also refused as I am legally entitled to be there the same as any other paying customer. We finished our meal and left, I probably would have made a bigger deal of what had happened at the time however I was with two other people at the time and I just wanted to eat and get back to the hospital to visit my father who was a patient at the health sciences at the time. The poins here are 2: if you are going to come to Canada and start a business like the owner or manager of this establishment please make a reasonable effort to learn the language and second and more importantly learn the laws too! I urge anyone reading these reviews to boycott this lack luster restaurant and look elsewhere for your Chinese food, I recommend Sequeras.
    Best, Ed and Weston dog