Danny’s Steakhouse (Taipei)
One of my favourite restaurants in Taipei (and possibly anywhere) is Danny & Company in the Da’an district. I’ve also been to the almost as good D&C Bistro in the Zhongshan district, which is another 10/10 dining experience with excellent ambiance, terrific service, and most of all, heavenly food (my reviews of both places here). And so when I heard the owner just opened a third store just down the road from D&C Bistro, specializing in steak — Danny’s Steakhouse — I immediately put all other dining plans aside and made a visit there my top priority.
Danny’s Steakhouse is quite similar to the two other stores in appearance and menu, but it’s probably the most expensive with the priciest steak coming in at NT$3,350 (though the cheapest option is the truffle mushroom risotto at NT$1,000). The interior is dimly lit with classy furniture and well-mannered, knowledgeable waiters, but what sets it apart is the private rooms (I think there are three or four) for those wanting a more personal dining experience.
Here is the menu. As you can see, their lunch set is priced according to the main course you choose. You start off with a delicious appetizer followed by an amazing soup. The main courses are understandably dominated by the steaks, though you can also choose pork, lamb, fish, risotto or lobster (strangely no chicken), and comes with your choice of side. And of course, there is the dessert, which comes with tea or coffee. The good thing is that even though the dishes are similar to the other two restaurants, they are still unique, making it still a worthwhile place to visit even if you’ve sampled Danny and Company or D&C Bistro before.
First of all, before anything else, there is the house bread. As with all of Danny’s house bread, this one was wonderful, fresh, crusty on the outside and warm and soft on the inside. The olive oil dip was pretty nice too, but still nothing beats the truffle butter from Danny and Kitchen.
For the starters, we went with something a little different, the beef carpaccio and the Tokyo-style crab cake. I don’t usually get beef carpaccio, but this one was exquisite and I was tempted by the mustard mayo. I had sampled crab cake before at Danny and Company but it was not a fried Tokyo-style crab cake (kind of like a croquette) and I think I enjoyed this one even more, probably because of the anchovy aioli.
Next the soups. Initially we wanted to get two mushroom cappuccinos, but the waitress recommended the smoked tomato soup, which she said was their specialty. So we got one each, and I’m glad because while the cappuccino was great, it was something I had tried many times before. The smoked tomato soup was different and had that amazing sour tang of smoky BBQ sauce which I love.
Before the main courses were served they brought us the condiments for the steak — mustard seeds and sea salt. Simple but enticing.
The main courses arrived shortly after. The steak we got was the USDA Prime Filet Mignon (NT$1,750), cooked to medium rare (recommended). Lightly seasoned, with roasted garlic. You don’t need to me to you how amazing it was. BTW, the steaks on the right hand side of the menu (the more expensive ones) are a little softer than the ones on the left.
For the second main course we went with something a little different, the US Maine Lobster. It was a little cold by the time we finished the steak, but it was still pretty good. No shells, all lobster, with a creamy sauce that could have been a little more flavoursome. A good choice but next time I might try the lamb or even a different steak.
You get a choice of a side dish with each set, and we got the bake potato and the broccoli. Other options are hash brown and corn. I’m happy with our choices. The baked potato was huge and filling, and I loved the crunchy crusty stuff on top, and the broccoli was buttery (but not too much so) added some much needed greens to offset all the meat.
Last but not least, the desserts, which are always a highlight of the Danny restaurants. There were four options today and we went with a Japanese cheesecake with orange sorbet and a chocolate tarte with wasabi sorbet. Other options, from memory were a carrot cake and a pineapple cake.
The cheesecake was scrumptious — light and cheesy — and the orange sorbet was a nice complement (can’t quite put on my finger on what that green thing was…maybe a apple mousse thingy?), but the chocolate tarte gets the award for best dessert of the day. So chocolaty and thick with a beautiful biscuit base. And the wasabi sorbet was astonishing. Not something I would have ordered ordinarily but it added a real nice kick to the tarte. Perfection.
Lastly, some petit fours. They were OK, nothing special, but still nice to have.
Overall, another lovely experience. Whenever you go to any of the three Danny restaurants you’re pretty much guaranteed a fantastic all-round meal, and this was no different.
PS: That said, if I had to pick just one, I’d probably still go with Danny & Company because of the location and slightly friendlier prices.
Danny’s Steakhouse (教父牛排）
Address: No.58, Lequn 3rd Rd., Zhongshan Dist., Taipei City
Hours: 11:30-15:00, 18:00-22:30