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“Don't judge by the cover”

Cilantro Bangladeshi Bistro
Ranked #15 of 737 Restaurants in Norfolk
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: Indian
Dining options: Delivery
Restaurant details
Dining options: Delivery
Reviewed 23 August 2014

As other reviewers have mentioned, don't judge by the outside. It's located North of Virginia Beach Blvd on Kempsville road with an exterior that you'd easily pass by. Make sure you stop and enjoy the fabulous hospitality of the family owned business. My high schooler has visited many times because it fits his budget and fills his stomach and the rest of us finally joined him for a Sunday lunch.

You order at the counter where the food is displayed and served. We had a little of everything and we all raved about our choices. The sauce on the rice with the shrimp was finger-licking good and the bread is a must. The bread was made to order so be patient if it comes after you sit down.

We will definitely return!

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1  Thank bdaygirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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84 - 88 of 94 reviews

Reviewed 18 July 2014 via mobile

We dropped in around 5pm and were able to try a variety of items from the lunch menu with a bit of guidance from our lovely waitress. Everything was delicious! The bread was extraordinarily light and tasty. The veggie mishali was fantastic and the jhaal beef was wonderful! We highly recommend this place! If you like Indian food you will LOVE these Bangladeshi dishes! In addition the proprietors were very friendly and seemed genuinely happy to have us as customers - something which is quite unusual these days.

1  Thank Melissa M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 June 2014

The food is great especially if you're a fan of Eastern foods. But don't go there if you're looking for a good looking restaurant! It's a low level type of restaurant for sure but worth trying it.

1  Thank Yasmin l
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 June 2014

First of all, they are very friendly and accommodating. We were vacationing in Norfolk for our parents 40th anniversary and were running late but they stayed open quite late for us. The owner and his brother-in-law made sure we were taken care of and made us feel like we were visiting friends.

We started off with the limade which was an exact match for the sweet drink we had back in Bangladesh. Because we were a large group, they brought out the food family style. For appetizers we had chicken and beef aloo chops, which were light and crispy, possibly the best we we'd ever had! The salad was fresh and had a light tasty dressing. The jhall beef was good and the shahi chicken was outstanding. The vegetable mishali tasted very fresh and had a wonderful blend of vegetables and spices. The polao was nice, it was not too heavy and had a beautiful light fragrance. The goat biriyani was probably the best we've had outside of the in the US. It was not greasy or heavy, was seasoned perfectly and had a mouth watering aroma. It was very similar to a Hyderabad biriyani.

We were so full that we didn't have room for sweets, but the owner insisted we try it. We usually don't bother with sweets when we go out because very few people know how to make them well, let alone restaurants. Boy were we surprised. My mom is well known for making sweets, which is partly why were are spoiled and have such a high standard. One of the hardest things to make well is Roshogolla. It takes almost a magical hand to get the right softness and texture without having it fall apart or squeak against your teeth. Even my mom was impressed. The Firni was also true to form and delicious.

We really appreciated that this wasn't a typical south asian restaurant serving tandoori and chicken tikka. If you want a taste of real Bangladeshi cuisine, this is the place. The menu is simple enough to try everything on it, which you will want to do since everything we tried was amazing. The decor is modern yet simple with pictures of Bangladesh take by the owner's son.

Friendly, authentic, clean, great food. What more could you want?

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6  Thank Lutfur B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 June 2014

Today was my first experience @ Cilantro and I was impressed as soon as I walked it. The interior is simple and pretty and CLEAN. I walked up to the counter and was helped by a young man who explained what everything was, the ingredients, and how each was cooked. I went with the Royal Chicken and Polao Rice and splurged and ordered two of their daily specials, which was Cabbage Bhaja. And I am glad I did. There is a spiciness to them that is wonderful and unique. If you haven't tried it, I'd recommend it 100%. Take a leap of faith and try something new. It is worth it.

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1  Thank Henny757
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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