A little trip down Memory Lane: when BF and I first started dating, as I’ve mentioned countless times here before, he had little to no interest in food. He ate to live. I live to eat. See how different we are?
Around that time, I must’ve said to him that he didn’t know what good Chinese food was. To my surprise, he countered that he did indeed, and took me to a place he called “Danny Szechuan”. After we finished eating there, I told him politely that we hadn’t eaten Chinese food (and in later years, I wasn’t so polite!). We never went back… until yesterday.
Danny’s boasts two floors at its location at 164-14 Cross Bay Boulevard, Howard Beach. The first floor is dedicated to regular dining, Chinese/Szechuan food, and I’m not sure what else, because both times I’ve been there, we’ve gone straight upstairs to…
hibachi-style dining. (Which is why I “politely” told him it wasn’t Chinese- hibachi, to my knowledge, is of Japanese descent.)
In any case, we were celebrating our own recent personal triumphs- his at work, and mine very personal- so he told me he’d like to go to Danny Szechuan or Frenasia. I decided that since we were celebrating for him, too, we should go where he’d like… under the condition I could take pictures and review Danny’s.
Once again, we went to the 2nd floor for hibachi. We both ordered the filet mignon dinner, which came with a shrimp appetizer, onion soup, salad, noodles, and vegetables for $22.95. B. opted to switch to the miso, for which he wasn’t charged extra.
The onion soup was wonderfully clear but flavorful. I like mushrooms and I like very clear soups, so this worked fine for me. The salad, while fresh lettuce, had no tomatoes or cucumbers, which disappointed me, and way too much dressing. The dressing was good, but just way too much for the bit of salad they’d given me.
I felt bad for our chef, because it was late, we were the only two at our table, and neither of us were that into the show. So I tried to watch, and I was amused when he pushed the food around to form this:
BF whispered at this point, “Look! He loves you!” and I just laughed. Even funnier when the chef put his spatula underneath the center of the heart and made it “beat”. Cute.
One thing to note right off the bat: if you’re the kind of person- and don’t laugh, there are a lot of people out there like this- who doesn’t like when different foods on your plate touch, you wouldn’t like this place.
Of course, they all taste the same, since they’re all cooked together with the same soy sauce, garlic mix… I am pretty sure there’s some sesame oil, sugar, and possibly mirin in there as well. Don’t get me wrong- it is quite tasty- but everything has this flavor, so if you’re not into it, you won’t like it.
One thing to note as well: they use a ton of shortening in the cooking. It was a bit disturbing to watch him slice off big hunks of shortening and add it to the grill, over and over and over again. I have very limited experience with hibachi in general but I think this is what most places do as well. I felt a big lump in the bottom of my stomach after we’d finished eating, and I didn’t even finish all of the food. There was just too much oil for me to feel comfortable afterwards.
I did appreciate how they cooked our steaks to exactly medium rare, and that each meal was only $22.95 (plus an 18% tip that’s added in automatically, plus tax and any drinks); we were given two fairly large filet mignons each.
Yvo says: While tasty enough, I don’t think I could comfortably want to go here again, if only for the oil making me feel sick afterwards. Otherwise, nice place, spacious decor, and the service was super friendly and nice. It wasn’t expensive, either – with a couple of drinks and the added side of fried rice, it came to just under $80 for two of us. I took home quite a lot of food as well.
middle of the road- if you like hibachi and are in the neighborhood, this is your place!
This is so funny. I agree with you; this has nothing to do with Chinese food. It’s Japanese hibachi-style exactly the way they do it at Benihana, down to the beating heart on the grill shtick (did he do the onion ring volcano for you too?). I took my students to Benihana last spring at their request, and as you said, it was enjoyable, but yes, very oily and heavy. Maybe BF likes it because it’s comfortable and familiar for him, and he feels he’s getting value for his $ — all understandable reasons. Sometimes my husband and I talk about going back to Brooklyn to the site of our first date — a little neighborhood not-so-bad Mexican restaurant, just for old times’ sake. I wonder how we’d like it now…
omg the i heart u with the food is too cute!
madeline gillad says
i went by ur recomendation. just love their skills. the chiefs are nice and most of the waiters are good. foods taste great, i guess i will try their chinese food next time.