Friday, December 28, 2012

Christmas/New Year's Special Dinner at Best Buffet, Huntington Station, NY

I am pushing this article ahead of other articles that are scheduled to appear on this site, as I want to give those who would like to try this special dinner a chance to get there for New Year's Eve 2012 or New Year's Day 2013. We have been to the very special Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year's Eve and New Year's Day dinner at Best Buffet located in Huntington Station, New York last year and the year before on Christmas Day. We returned there again this year and were very pleased. Last year, and prior, at this restaurant there had been temperature problems with the food. There was no such problem this year and everything that I tried was very, very good!

This is a Chinese/Asian buffet and it is one of the highest priced such buffets in this area. The price for this special holiday dinner is $33.99 per person - the same as it was last year. This is the most expensive buffet dinner that I have been to and written about. It is way above most of the buffets that I recommend. This price is just for this special holiday dinner, but it is not much more than their usual weekend dinner. For a holiday dinner- we are talking about the biggie holidays here - it is not that bad. If you want soda or tea you will be charged $1.79 each more. They will automatically add a 12% tip onto the bill in addition to sales tax.  The children's price is $16.99!  The bill for the two of us without beverages - just water - was over $84.00. For us that is a lot - but I enjoyed the meal and that is what is important!

There are usually over 180 items on their buffet at dinner. This special meal is adding a number of special items to this - you will find:

Special Seafood bisque - this was a very unusual soup and unlike any bisque that I have ever had. It was a dark brown similar to hot and sour soup but not spicy. It had chunks of seafood - not sure what but some had the consistency of shrimp and lobster. It also had gelatinous noodles which may be soybean noodles. It was interesting and good.

Tokyo Beef Shortrib - this was a large roasted beef rib carved at the carving station. It was carved off the bone and placed on your plate. It was very rare at the center and crispy at the edge. It was very good.

Lobster Salad with Tropical Fruit - this was on the cold bar with the salads and fruit. It was white in color and it was pieces of lobster and fruit. As I have to watch which raw fruit I eat due to allergies I did not try it. I wished I could have!

Roast Suckling Pig - they have had this each year. This year it was on the carving station and you took it yourself. It was inch wide strips of pork with a very crisp skin and each strip was about three inches long. Unlike year's past, it was hot and very good. The skin is very hard to bite. It is worth trying!

Grilled Stuffed Clam - this was a half calm that was grilled with bacon on top. It was overly salty to the taste and the clam was very, very chewy. I tried one but did not go back for another.

Fillet Mignon with Pepper Cone - this was a large roll of Fillet Mignon that was roasted with a pepper cream sauce on top. It was very good and very tender. It was served and carved at the carving station.

Alaska Jumbo Crab Legs - these were single legs - not clusters and not very jumbo. There were both hot and cold crab legs. Mixed in were also steamed lobster claws.

Fresh Oysters and Clams - raw oysters and clams on ice next to the sushi bar. The oysters were large and tasty. I added cocktail sauce. There were several types of sauce to top them with.

Grilled Lamb Leg with Rosemary Sauce - served on the carving station.

Pan Fried Fresh Scallop - these were served at the grill and they had a dark sauce on them and they were served on a large scallop shell. The scallop was tender and very tasty!

Grilled Lobster with Cheese - these were half lobsters - small with no claw. Mostly you are eating the tail as there was no meat in the rest of the half shell. The lobster was tasty. There was always a line when these lobsters came out and they were served at the carving station at one per plate. When these lobsters were not out, there was lobster in ginger sauce served to your plate in a good quantity. The lobster in ginger sauce was tastier.

Italian Seafood Platter - I have to say I have no idea what this is - I did not see anything there that would meet this discription, but there was seafood everywhere on the buffet!

Salmon Fish with Dijon Sauce - there was a large salmon on the buffet. I am not partial to cooked salmon so I did not try it.

Jumbo Shrimp Scampi- these were large shrimp in garlic sauce. They looked very good.

Teriyaki Chilean Sea Bass - this was on the buffet and was very popular, especially with the Oriental people who were dining. Large chunks of Chilean sea bass were covered in a thick teriyaki sauce.

Roasted Peking Duck - this is always offered at the carving station here. The duck was large and meaty - and surprisingly not very fatty. Duck was carved and put in a thick, doughy steamed pancake and there were the traditional toppings and sauce for you to add yourself. There was no problem just carving several good sized pieces of duck to your plate.

Japanese Sushi and Sashimi - there is always a sushi bar here and there was a good variety of fish being offered. While I was at the sushi counter, one gentleman was asking for a certain roll and they were making it for him.

Seafood Delight with X.O. Sauce - this was no the buffet. I did not try it.

Roasted Prime Rib - this was on the carving station and they were carving thick slices of prime rib. This was real prime rib - not just roast beef. There were slices on the bone. The meat looked moist.

Fried Oysters with Wasabi - this was on the buffet. While I like raw oysters, I do not care for cooked oysters. If you like cooked oysters, these would be good.

Crispy Prawns with Mayonnaise - this was on the buffer. I did not try it.

Holiday Dessert - there was a variety of desserts with the most authentic being two Chinese dessert soups. There were cups of mango pudding, honeydew pudding, and chocolate pudding. There was a sign for creme brulee but there was no out. There were the usual Chinese buffet sheet cakes, a variety of cookies and macaroons, a coconut cake (which was gelatinous), kiwi fruit, something called Dragon Fruit which was red on the outside, white inside with black seeds, fruit salad, apple pie roll, and a sundae bar with soft serve ice cream. I tried a small piece of cheese cake which was not much more than the usual cheese cake found with the sheet cakes at many Chinese buffets. It was fine but not great cheese cake. I also tried something that looked like it should be a very thin chocolate cookie. A platter came out with very thin cookies in random shapes as a batter must have been poured out as liquid onto the baking sheet. There were the shapes of almonds (inside) bumped across the pieces. It looked like a chocolate cookie. It was hard to the bite and it did not really taste like chocolate. When you bit into the bump where the almond shape was it tasted like almond but no almond could be seen. It was very unusual - and without the chocolate taste was not really worth finishing.

These were the holiday features. In addition there were many other things to eat - some of which is found on their regular and weekend buffet and some not. There were two soup pots on the side near the carving station. One had duck soup. The other had spare rib soup. There were a variety of meets and seafood coming off the grill - beef, chicken, shrimp, octopus, and more. There were three dumplings - traditional shumai, a shumai stuffed with wild black rice, and pan fried pork dumplings. There were non-Asian foods like Fettuccine Alfredo (which was very good) and Chicken Marsala. They also have an hibachi grill now that they did not have in the past and there were raw meats and vegetables for you to choose and give to the chef to grill for you. There were many, many good things to choose.

The only problem is that there is so much, it is not possible to take even a small amount of everything that you would like to try. I tried to just take a little of what I wanted to try and still could not include everything that caught my eye. One thing that I had that is worth mentioning - along with so much else - was sweet and sour cod fish. The tray had a whole fried cod including head with bared teeth. There were large chunks of fried cod that were continually added to this tray and they were covered in a light sweet and sour sauce that was not the usual red sweet and sour sauce you usually get in a Chinese restaurant. This was very good. So much was very good.

When we were almost finished, my wife asked if I felt (pertaining to value) if this meal here or the meal at Captain George's Seafood Buffet in Virginia was better. That was a hard question to answer and she choose that buffet to compare to as it is the closest (though cheaper) to the price of this buffet. My answer was this meal and I based that answer on the carving station. Here you could make a meal of Prime Rib, Leg of Lamb, Fillet Mignon, Short Rib, Duck, and two types of lobster. And not include anything else. There is no place (at least locally) that you can do that for $34.00 - and the food was quality.

I do this holiday buffet once a year. It was a nice holiday dinner. I recommend that you try it and as New Year's Eve and New Year's Day is next week you still have an opportunity to go here and also enjoy this meal. Otherwise you have to wait until next year's holidays.

Best Buffet is located on Route 110 North - 179 Walt Whitman Road in Huntington Station, New York on Long Island. Their phone number is 631-385-0800. There is a website and that is linked at the side of this page.

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