Monday, June 28, 2004


8 Thompson St @ Canal Street, 212-334-5490

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Cost per person: $10
"YGWYPF" factor: 6/10 (you get what you pay for)

Two years back, maybe 3, Biny was our hot favorite for weekday lunches. Fast, close by, and consistently good. Now, we've grown a bit bored of it's gray interiors and dance club decor - but that's after at least 30 visits over the years.

Why Biny? Cheap, value for money. Not quite the place to bring your girlfriend over - unless you head for the Karaoke nights, of which I know nothing at all. Lunch hours are usually empty - there have been quite a few occassions when we were the only people in the entire place.

My favorite here is the Bento box, as pictured. Not quite as good as the one at Tokyo Bay, but then it's 30% cheaper - at just $8, it's a deal, with the shumai and salad and soup to go with the main dish, one side, and rice. Ask for any of the standard ones - shrimp tempura, chicken or pork katsu, or the terikayis. Choose from vegetable gyozas or shrimp shumais as sides - you can ask them to be steamed and not fried. You may also choose 1/2 rolls (california or tuna) as your side.

A recent discovery was the Unaju Lunch Broiled Eel over Rice with Eel Sauce - I always thought eel was slimy - this tasted just like a very good grilled fish. If you are bored of tendon and katsu don, give this a try sometime.


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