Arirang Hibachi Steakhouse and Sushi Bar's hibachi chefs pull double duty, acting as entertainers in addition to grillmasters. They captivate large groups of diners with whirling knifework, dynamic spatula twirls, and the occasional spout of flame at tableside hibachi grills, flipping hot portions of lobster and chicken directly onto waiting plates. Behind the bamboo-finished bar, the sushi chefs move more slowly as they carefully seal colorful combinations of veggies, seafood, and vinegar-anointed rice within sheets of delicate seaweed. Like a poltergeist beauty pageant, not all of the talent is visible to the eye—the culinary team makes some of the restaurant's most exotic dishes, such as kobe beef sliders and wasabi-crusted filet mignon, behind the closed doors of the kitchen.
As chronicled on Free Williamsburg, the dry-aged and char-grilled steaks at DeStefano's Steakhouse are cut "as thick as the last Harry Potter book" before they're served atop heated plates. Executive chef Alex Golovin approaches the entire menu with an old-school sensibility that highlights classic cuts alongside houses take on chicken cordon bleu and seafood pasta dishes. These plates pair with a compact list of cordials, brandy, and scotch, as well as nearly 100 international red and white wines.
Owner Joey DeStefano is deeply committed to his area's history, courting "more of an old-school neighborhood crowd" than Williamsburg gentrifiers. But wherever you come from, Joey will try his best to make you feel like family. The familial atmosphere comes naturally, due to the fact that the restaurant inhabits the former home of Joey's mother and still houses several of his childhood sleds, each named Rosebud. Outside the brick building, old-fashioned lettering and a neon sign proclaiming "Dee's Corner" welcome guests inside, where family photos line the walls and a fireplace casts its glow on a pressed-tin ceiling.
New York Steak House's resident master chef assembles a menu of hearty steak house staples to serve in the restaurant's lavish dining room. Anchor drifting appetites with starters of Prince Edward mussels wading in white garlic sauce, or enjoy slivers of exquisite beef carpaccio drizzled with a garlic soy vinaigrette. Sides of mushroom risotto and broccoli rabe ride shotgun alongside entrees such as marinated skirt steak or a plate of chicken cordon blue, which, like a businessman's suitcase, conceals a reserve of prosciutto and mushroom sauce. Diners are surrounded by hand-stained copper ceilings and mahogany walls as well as stained-glass windows that cast a multicolored hue on mealing duos and quartets.
Strip steak, prime rib, or filet mignon--the chefs at A&W Steakhouse have yet to meet a cut of beef they don't like. Wet-aged for 14 days, the pepper-crusted black Angus prime rib oozes flavor, and the pan-roasted filet mignon finds a worthy partner in white truffle fries. Then there's the sauces to choose from: bourdalaise, brandy pepper-cream, or cabernet reduction. Even the beef-averse can delight in such dishes as the herb dijon chicken roasted in a fresh blend of spices, pan-seared Ahi tuna served over black fried rice, and the double-cut pork chop atop a bleu cheese mash with apple relish.