Dish No. 8: Simmered Beef Hakusai Sukiyaki at Hibino
Today's pick: Simmered beef hakusai sukiyaki ($4) at Hibino (333 Henry Street, Cobble Hill, Brooklyn, 718-260-8052).
Off the beaten track in Cobble Hill, Hibino proudly presents the micro-cuisine of Kyoto, a city southwest of Tokyo, and once the national capital. The cuisine includes pressed sushi, a flair for tofu, a special appreciation of sake, and a collection of small, home-style dishes called obanzai.
Every day at Hibino a chalkboard lists four, all priced at $4, plus some cooked fish and sushi specials. The place doubles as a sushi bar, thronged early in the evening with stroller-pushing parents who like the laid-back ambience and simple menu, later with sushi aficionados. The obanzai are revelatory of the way Japanese eat when they are not out on the town: in this case a sukiyaki with a savory broth, in which are deposited napa cabbage, ribbons of beef, shredded daikon, and Tokyo scallions. Nothing could be more simple or more delicious.
Next: Gorge on all the dishes so far ...