Went to Baang last night, the Long Island branch of the mini-chain that includes locations in Greenwich and Westchester. We saw a review in the paper, and it looked promising. It got excellent reviews, so we had to go. "Asian-fusion," the newspaper said. We were prepared for a "China Grill-type" experience, due to the way the salads were described in the article(calamari or chicken, just like CG), and the "crunchy spinach," fried like China Grill.
At the site of a number of other failed Asian restaurants in Woodbury Commons, it's a pretty place, with an open feeling, although it is not a large place.
Nice modern-chic design, reminded me of the Paramount or Royalton in NYC, with their Phillip Starck designs.
I don't know. I wanted to like it. The hostess was exceedingly warm and friendly, greeting us effusively at the door, and checking up on us as we finished dinner. The waitress was helpful and nice, too.
The food, ultmately was disappointing. We had the chicken salad, spare ribs, lobster crepes, whole fish (striped bass), and duck fried rice. The presentation of every dish was exciting and bold. You have to like the effort here. The salad was tasty, like China Grill's, but much smaller. The lobster crepes were devoid of all but a hint of lobster. Rather, they had mostly mushroom and vegetable filling with a sauce reminiscent of lobster. The ribs were tiny and overly sweet, almost candy-like. Our fish was nicely done; fried, but not greasy. The duck fried rice was murky and unfamiliar, but not bad (too much soy sauce?).
Our desserts were novel and delightful: a chile-pepper apricot gingerbread ice cream sandwich, and a milk chocolate creme brulee with coconut ice cream, both presented imaginatively.
It was not a large dinner. The servings could have been more generous. The bill was not cheap, either.
Our bill, pre-tip was $118. For about $25 less, I could be much more enthusiastic.
It's a pretty place for a dinner/date, but don't bring the family if you're hungry or trying to save money!
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