Monday, January 3, 2011

Danny & Company - Taipei

Stepping into Danny & Co in Taipei leads you into a luxurious yet simple atmosphere. The walls are black and shiny and the lights are slightly dimmed. Stylish. We were all sat in front of the teppan plate and our menu was personally picked out by our friendly waiter.

The restaurant is French influenced, as evidenced by the awesomely fresh baked bread. Super hot, super crunchy on the outside, super soft and fluffy on the inside. This freshly baked bread was extremely appetising alone, but when accompanied with the truffle butter, it was really out of this world~ And to prove it, my partner ate like 4 bread rolls whereas my friend polished off 3. Yes - it was that good that we eat that much bread even when we're having a degustation.

Bread with truffle butter

An appetiser of vinegary fig. I personally do not like fig. If we were not in taipei, I would have given this a miss. But - just in case the figs in taipei were different, I dared a taste and... well, it just tasted like normal fig.


An oyster was to come. Big and plump with crushed garlic, onion and vinaigrette. Mmm... yum. I could polish off atleast half a dozen of these :)


Next to come was the mushroom cappuccino. Small cup of creamy porcini mushroom soup, a substantial height of foam and topped with a porcini mushroom piece and a gold flake. It was very aromatically creamily yummy.

Mushroom Cappuccino

Our first dish which was freshly cooked by our chef on the teppan was scallops. The scallop was lightly seared with wakame and served with a brush of truffle miso sauce. This was amazing! The wakame was a good compliment to the just rightly cooked, subtly sweet and delicious scallop.

Seared Scallop with baby wakame and truffle miso sauce

Next came the foie gras. 3 pale looking innocent slabs of duck liver, sitting on a platter before it meets the hot teppan plate. The moment it hits the hot plate, something atrocious happens to it. It starts to melt and oil off - and I mean, it just constantly, without stopping, sheds the most ridiculous amounts of oil that the chef constantly scoops it up and bins the oil. It was soooooo much oil. This duck liver is super super fatty. It looks much more appetising when it is nicely arranged by our pro chef. The texture of the foie gras is light and subtle. Not an over-the-top intense flavour hit like some other foie gras I've tasted. This was good. Balanced almost. It sat ontop of a caramelised apple heap, but that didn't add too much to the dish.

Seared Foie Gras

Next came something unexpected. Slow cooked abalone from South Africa showered in shallot garlic butter sauce. The abalone is most tender and juicy which is lovely. The shallot garlic butter sauce is rich and super super strong. Give me some pasta and I'll most willinging soap this sauce up - it was delicious sauce! But the abalone and the sauce together? Hmm... not too sure about that one. It was a rather wierd combination. Maybe that's how the french do it?

Abalone in butter sauce

The main part of the whole meal is the beef. We got the New York Top Cap and the Kobe steak. The beef came with a range of condiments - Jap style vinegary type sauce, relish, thai-style sauce and a chilli mustardy type sauce. The reason why I'm a bit hazy about the sauces is because they didn't do much for me. The best condiment to these steak bits were really the salt flakes and the teppan-fried garlic.

on the grill

The New York Top Cap was delicious. Tender and super juicy, slightly on the fat side, but it was melt in your mouth yum-ness! Eat bite gave off a beefy fatty aroma. As I said before, the best condiment is to eat it with the salt and the garlic. Mmm.

NY top cap steak

My partner and my friend liked the Kobe more. This was tender too. But maybe because of the way it was cut, it was slightly more chewy and also less fatty which to me, translate to less melt-in-your-mouth goodness. But they're both guys. So maybe guys prefer more substance than melt-in-your-mouth stuff. Again, the steak was good :)

Kobe Beef

There were some super super fatty bits to the new york top cap steak and that was set aside to be a part of this dish. Onions, asparagus, truffle tossed potatoes (yes, truffle AGAIN), and fatty ends of the top cap steak. The highlight was the potatoes. This was superbly fluffy on the inside and filled with truffle aromas. I could eat many many many of these but unfortunately, each was just served with 2 little slices.

Onion, asparagus, truffled potatoes, NY top cap

Now for desserts. my partner chose the creme brulee. This was the yellow glob in the middle of the vanilla icecream and the espresso shot. Where's the caramelised toffee stuff?!?!?!?! It was pretty poor creme brulee - dense and didn't taste like much - but the vanilla icecream was nice.

Creme Brulee

My friend and I both opted for the chocolate trio. Strawberry icecream (with real strawberry pieces) sitting on top of a chocolate cookie, chocolate cake with super rich chocolate sauce, and chocolate brownie. YUM. All three were nice. The cake was my friend's favourite. It was rich and chocolately yet light and edible at the same time.

Chocolate Trio

Petit fours came in threes. This jelly thing, a meringe, and an almond glop. The almond thing was really yummy. Not too sweet and rich in nutty flavour. The meringe was also nice but nothing out of the ordinary. I didn't like the jelly thing much though. Don't even remember what flavour it was.

Petit Fours

All up, Danny & Co was pretty good. The waiter picks the menu for you so half the time, you might not know what exactly it is that you're eating. If you're lucky, you get the English speaking waiter to explain it. If you get a non-English speaking one, you might need to learn how to decipher Mandarin pretty quickly :) Dinner here is approx AUD $100 per person (or a bit more than that) which is pretty pricey for Taiwanese people's standards. So definately worth a try, but probably won't be a regular here.

Food - 9/10
Service - 8/10
Ambiance - 8.5/10
Value for money - 7/10
Overall - 32.5/40

Danny & Company
No. 33, Ln. 52, Siwei Rd
Da'an District
Taipei City, 106
Tel: 886 2 27059977

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