Supreme feast: New Route 29 buffet delivers size, size, size

dish-flames-webGet your meal cooked the Hibachi way!

Dish recently had a chance to check out the spread at Hibachi Grill & Supreme Buffet, the all-you-can-eat Chinese-American restaurant that took over the Golden Corral space on 29 North in the fall. What a spread it is.

The owners claim it's the biggest restaurant in Charlottesville. Indeed, we're talking nearly 12,000 square feet of space transformed to look nothing like the old Golden Corral. It's really just one big room right now with the massive buffet spread, grill, and sushi bar right in the middle under an elaborate crystal chandelier. And there are 250 items to choose from!

According to owner/manager Leon Chen, the six-year old restaurant group already has 38 restaurants in the Southeast and plans to open several more in the near future. And you can see why. The lunch buffet is only $6.99 for adults, $3.75 for kids 6 to 10, and $2.45 for kids 3 to 6. And dinner is only $9.99, $5.75, and $4.55. We're talking an all-you-can-eat dinner for a family of four for under $30. Plus, there's a $1 discount for seniors and college students.

Now, Dish isn't saying that Hibachi Grill Supreme Buffet is on the cutting-edge of the local cuisine scene, but with economic times being what they are, the abundance before us at such a reasonable price was indeed a spectacle. And, of course, it all depends on what you choose at these giant buffets.

Choose wisely at Hibachi Grill Supreme Buffet, and you may be rewarded. Go light with some sushi and a salad, or feed the beast with ribs, steak, and General Tao's chicken. There's a grill area where you can select the raw materials for your meal and watch it being cooked for you, right next to a sushi chef at work. There's a small raw bar with octopus and shell fish, there's a fruit bar, salad bar, all the familiar Chinese dishes, spaghetti and meal balls, pizza, enchiladas, rib-eye steak, seafood selections, veggies galore, and a dessert and ice cream bar with a chocolate fountain.

Service is paramount at the place, too, and your empty plates and drinks won't linger on the table for long. The folks are busy in there, hustling around to clear tables, refilling buffet items, grilling up dinners while flames shoot in the air. Of course, one of the challenges of eating at Hibachi Grill & Supreme Buffet, or any big buffet where you strap on the feed bag, is knowing when you've had enough. So be cautious, foodies.


Dave McNair- don't let the toy thing out, they may get shut down by Obamanation who are not in favor of "happy" meals.

@ Lost in a crowd

Anybody who would say that cooking your own food costs more and takes "hours in front of a stove every night" isn't doing it right, and doesn't know math, plain and simple!

The system that we use on my end is to cook things up (like a package of meat for instance) then store the extras it in containers in the fridge, to be re-heated and eaten in the following days. So you make your food for the next four days or so in one batch, and then all you have to do in the next few days is re-heat...not spend "hours in front of a stove every night." And by re-heat I'm talking about on the stove or in the oven. No microwave ovens here on my end. But no way does it take hours, every night. It may take half hour on the first night of initially cooking, but reheating takes no time at all.

Me and my boyfriend buy our own food and eat independently, we're not joined at the hip, held hostage to each other and forced to eat the same foods as each other the way most live-in couples or married spouses do, so it's easier for us to do this sort of system. He has his particular foods and diet that he likes and I have mine, so we each cook up whatever foods we like and store them in the fridge, and reheat as we go. One possible downside to this is that some people might not like the idea of eating mostly the same thing for multiple nights in a row. Me, I don't mind. Chicken for four nights in a row, fish for two or three, a steak for several days, whatever, it's all good. I'll change the veggies around, or use a different side dish, mix things up a little. :D My boyfriend has a penchant for making these really tasty soups and stews in large quantities, so he can freeze the extras in tubs in the freezer for later dates. Already pre-made, ready to go, just defrost and warm up in a pot on the stove. And doing the math - one package of chicken, steak, turkey, or some fish, etc. divided up by four meals average that a package can provide for one person and that's pretty cheap. Or like what my boyfriend does, making stews and soups with a good variety of ingredients, divided up among however many meals it can provide, it's pretty cheap. Nobody can argue that. Even for a family of four it would still be cheaper to feed them a package of meat that costs $8 total then to spend $8 *per person* at some restaurant. I don't see how people don't get the math on this?

Mr/Mrs/Miss Shame, perhaps their blue collar is why they might have to pass up the best $34.95 steak in town just 3 blocks south at The Aberdeen Barn. And maybe the fact that 98% of the population is now blue collar or living below the poverty level has a lot to do with it too. The Hibachi Grill and Supreme Buffett probably looks pretty good to the public works employee who might be making $10 to $12 an hour and needs to feed a family of 5.

This is disgusting. From the ground up, and most of you have no shame eating garbage. IT'S GARBAGE, and because it's cheap, you consider it as fair. I like how somebody commented it was pedestrian, lol, IT'S A BUFFET, HELLO?!?!, really now what did you expect it to be? AND PEOPLE ARE REVIEWING THIS PLACE, lol. I am depressed that people are of this sort. Totally ignorant of food culture, good taste, and quality. We have people on this forum talking about the best thing on the downtown mall is meatloaf. I guess thats a real eye opener in itself. Im not too rich for meatloaf, but COME ON ALREADY. Do yourself a favor and flush your tongue down the toilet, just make sure your wallet stays in your pocket. Depressing, Disguesting, Mediocre, Over-indulgent and Over-consumed, and let me guess... You just don't know better? Don't know anything about food? Turn the tv on and get an education, or read, or cook, or go and eat at good wholesome places (you know, the ones that people like Tom knock in favor of a feeding troff), try something new! Your blue collar doesn't mean you have to be ignorant.

Do they have Chairman Mao's Moo Shoo too?

Chinese food is not meant to be eaten buffet style. Food cooked to a perfect state in a wok is meant to be eaten immediately, not set out under french fry lights for who knows how long.

I can't imagine eating Chinese food at a buffet style restaurant. I am not surprised that it is busy, look how many people eat at McDonalds.


Shopping for healthy food at the grocery store is expensive. You can get a salad at a restaurant that would probably cost more if you made it at home, especially accounting for all the different veggies. Sure, iceberg & tomato is one thing, but if you want a nutritious, filling meal, going out to eat (or getting takeout) is sometimes cheaper. Not to mention quicker, so if you're an hourly employee, you're not spending hours in front of the stove every night. Obviously you have to make conscious choices--many people at buffets probably don't--but I don't think it's accurate to say nixing meals out necessarily saves money.

Is this a paid advertisement Dave? Just curious...

If the economy is so in the toilet here, then how come every-time I go to the Clifton Inn, or Fleurie, or Duner's, Hamilton's, the C&O, or the Downtown Grill, it is packed?

We ate there a couple of months ago and felt that it was over hyped in terms of how they describe themselves. There wasn't anything I tried that didn't have a better version of it at some other buffet. (Our fave is East Garden on Pantops.) I actually didn't mind Golden Corral, despite how the name blatantly, yet indirectly, referred to its patrons as cattle feeding at the trough. :D

So we ate at Supreme Buffet once, felt disappointed, and concluded we wouldn't be going back. But by the looks of the near full parking lot and huge crowd inside when we were there I don't think they'll have anything to worry about in terms of business. Plenty of people will dig it, even if a few others don't. Like several people have noted, it's a good value and a huge spread of food, though none of it was exceptional or noteworthy imo.

"A thousand hairy savages sitting down to lunch
Gobble gobble glup glup munch munch munch..."

Great reviews! None of the so-called Chinese food is made locally anywhere, anyway. Those Chun Bo trucks just keep on moving from NYC throughout the East Coast every week.

The food is good for the price. The sushi is good and there is a broad selection. Of course, this is a buffet - so you're never going to get the same quality as a much more expensive cook-to-order restaurant (and the owners openly admit that) but for what it is I felt like I received good food at a fair price.

If you want snobby boutique food, go somewhere else. If you're simply hungry and want to sample a lot of dishes, give it a shot.


Fleurie, Clifton Inn, C&O...sounds like things are going good for you, and the folks who can afford to eat in those fine restaurants. Although, I doubt they are as packed as the Hibachi Grill! As for the economy, I'm no expert, but I do know that a lot of people are hurting out there. Paid advertisement? No, I've been to eat there a few times, even took my family there over the holidays and we had a fine time. Kids loved all the choices, getting it themselves, staff was friendly, and the kids loved the fountain and the little vending machines with toys.

Dave McNair

Maybe because FOOD and BEVERAGE is one of the last things people cut back on. When gas hits $5.00+ a gallon next year, I suspect these restaurants won't be packed when you visit them.

Went just before christmas. It was slammed-jam packed. Have to agree the food was not spectacular but was just okay. I do not remember the server smiling even once. The chandelier was real pretty, though.

just what america needs...another place to grow their gut! unfortunately they don't provide a treadmill at every table so the america's porkers can work off some of their pork hanging over their belt.

Be cautious? That's not enough of a warning. The food was awful. Couldn't find one redeeming dish. A complete waste of calories.

Patronize Asian Fusion or China King instead.

So, in other words, this place is worse than Golden Corral?

I'm not sure if this one is part of the same Chains or not,But I've eaten at a Hibachi Grill up in Maryland, Sounds like the same. Food up there is good for Buffett fare and something for everyone. I'll have to check out this place in the future.

Small Town, Small Minds must eat at one of the pretentious Downtown Mall eateries. The food here is fine, especially the food that is grilled to order. There is a nice variety of chicken and fish items, and a number of cold food items. It is the best value in C-ville.

I went and I thought you got what you paid for. The place was clean and the staff friendly, the food was plentiful but pedestrian.

how many different oversweet sauces can you put on battered and fried chicken pieces? trough style feeding at its finest. Glad i only paid the lunch price, as i would have felt robbed if i'd have paid for dinner. better sushi at any area grocery store. you can have that "value", tom.

This reads like promotional copy for this place. Is this a new "advertorial" kind of feature?

And what's up with the crewcut they gave to all of the trees on the property? Ugly.

We went once -- will never go again. Everyone had terrible stomach-aches afterward, and that was with trying to eat healthy. They "killed" the fresh meat and veggies on the hibachi. Became tough, tasteless, mush.

WORST food I've had in a LOOONG time.

It's just Golden Corral food with an Americanized "Asian" twist. No. Golden Corral at least had good rolls and steak tips. Between five of us we couldn't find one good dish.

No need to pay for the privilege of a stomach ache.

I ate there too and thought it was disgusting. This from a fat man who eats chinese food about three times a week, every week. Less is more they say, I'll stick to Asian Fusion, less selection, less grease, lot's of friendly servers. Never liked the China King either, so maybe I'm a chinese food snob...

@Big Boy: that's hilarious. (ps. that means i'm in trouble)

My spouse and I have eaten at Hibachi Grill twice. I think the shrimp is superb (lots of "fancier" restaurants overcook seafood). Some things I like at HG; others I don't. My preerence would be Chinese food only, but restaurants have to appeal to the masses these days (something for everyone).HG is fine for a meal, but if I wanted superior Chinese (or Japanese) food, I would try other area restaurants or restaurants in other parts of the state. LLMY

You folks need to get the message: Get on the bus or fall behind. This (All-you-can-eat) is the new way. Big people are the next step in evolution. We will crush the flacos...

@Tom -- I don't frequent the downtown mall. It's an over-priced tourist trap with severe parking issues, and except for a very few places, the DTM food is overrated. Best deal is the Nook's meatloaf sandwich, tasty and reasonably priced.

On our one visit to Hibachi Grill, the food was truly awful. We have no plans to return. As I said, Asian Fusion and China King do a much better job. They've had their ups and downs as any restaurant does, but nothing as disappointing as HG.

The food on the buffet was cold or luke warm at best, over-sauced, gummy, tasteless, etc. Get the real picture?

This darn place is why "A Patriot's Place" can't make a go of it! T- (doggy)Baggers are confused. Golden Corral was the place that they marched from, their "Selma". and it now is so awesomely full of food! How can they be expected to leave there to eat at a former aRBY'S? Some choices are too difficult.

I feel depressed about America when I hear about restaurants like this...and for the same reason I don't go to Walmart, Sam's Club, Costco, etc., I won't go to this restaurant. These places are aesthetically and psychologically deadening.

Tried it out about two weeks ago with a large group. The staff was friendly, but seemed to be a bit overwhelmed during a busy lunch time on the weekend.

The food selection was somewhat disappointing. It was nearly a 50/50 split between an americanized chinese buffet and just american buffet. Pizza, ribs, fried chicken, etc.

I still miss Hong Kong Buffet as it was my favorite in town for many years before closing. These days, I'll stick to Asian Fusion were the staff has always been great during my visits and the selection is more my style. Price is similar to Hibachi Grill as well, maybe a buck more.

Just my devil's advocate 2 cents, but I would think that if people are hurting economically, then eating out at *any* restaurant wouldn't be economically feasible. Just because it's all you can eat doesn't mean you're not still spending like $9-10 a person for dinner, per adult, plus tip. Say you have two adults, three kids. It's $20 just for the adults, plus beverages, (and let's face it, people who usually eat at buffets aren't getting waters the way me and my boyfriend do, they get sodas and ice teas usually...) and maybe it's free for the youngins, I don't know. But that's still at least $25. With $25 you could go to the grocery store and by the foundational ingredients to cook food that would result in multiple meals (and I'm not talking about microwave insta meals) instead of spending over $25 for a one time meal. But then again, as I've commented before, so many people nowadays are either too lazy to cook, or flat out don't know how to.

Anyway just seems to me that when one is financially strapped you don't go out eating at any restaurants, period. You cook your own meals.

I must say that was a nice plug for Aberdeen Barn, and your high opinion of them is equally entertaining. Being just above the povertly line myself, I eat well. I eat really well, BECAUSE IT'S MORE IMPORTANT THAN $300 car payments, $150 cable bills, $200 cell phone bills, lottery tickets, and all the other absurd things people spend their money on. Your preaching to the choir, and those people with 5 kids making $12 need to worry about alot more than eating at a buffet, like trying to be socially responsible and practicing birth control. Don't rule out a good home cooked meal either, don't have time? No excuses, MAKE IT. Im tired of excuses, and everyone wimpering about obesity and nutrition, and people thinking eating well is a rich mans right. It's about not being lazy and making a choice to eat well. DISCLAIMER: If you think eating well includes a Chinese Buffet, than this conversation has completely missed you.