Queens >Food & Dining > Danny Brown Wine Bar & Kitchen
104-02 Metropolitan Ave, Forest Hills, NY | Directions 1137540.710164 -73.848980
Neighborhoods: Forest Hills
a gem and a delight in a great neighborhood! – I have read my fair share of Citysearch reviews and over time, you come to expect that people tend to post at the extremes. As a local Forest Hills area resident, I find it just amazing, if not entirely predictable, that some individuals would post such extremely negative reviews about a restaurant that is turning out consistently delicious food in a fun, sophisticated yet cozy and relaxing neighborhood environment, beloved by so many, and such a welcome fixture to the Metropolitan Ave area Forest Hills dining scene. So I have to express some positive energy about this place myself as a local who loves good food and appreciates staying close to home every now and then instead of trekking constantly into Manhattan for a great night out.
Danny Brown Wine Bar & Kitchen IS one of my favorite restaurants in Queens and in all of NYC for that matter! Those of us who like to go out and dine, drink some good wine, eat some good food, have been waiting for a place of this caliber locally for a long time. There is nothing pretentious about this restaurant. I have found the service to be warm and friendly, way more so than most restaurants in Queens or Manhattan. The menu is a fantastic mix of everything from chacuterie and cheese boards, to small plates, salads and larger entrees. The wine list is wide ranging, fun and affordable. And the signature dishes deliver night after night. I have been here several times. Though hardly a regular, every visit has been a great evening of food and wine. You've undoubtedly heard about the chicken under a brick. Suffice it to say that I do not order chicken out, unless it is the chicken under a brick at Danny Brown's. Now I'll tell you something else about myself. I gave up eating burgers years ago. Too much disappointment over lack of flavor and increasing awareness and concern about the source of our ground meat. One night, I went for the burger at Danny Brown's. Served on an English muffin, accompanied by delicious shoestring bistro fries, it was possible the juiciest, most succulent and flavorful burger I have ever eaten. I was so taken by the high quality and flavor of this $14 burger, I returned a few months later and ordered it again, with company, accompanied by a fine bottle of red wine. The hostess permitted us to taste several wines before settling on a bottle to accompany our burgers. Yes, our burgers. Doesn't get much better than that. And my faith in great burgers has been restored! There is something for everyone at this restaurant and you can basically spend as much or as little as you feel like. Enjoy yourself!
pretentious and expensive – There is no way DB is among the best restaurants in Queens. It might be, however, one of the best restaurants in Forest Hills, and that is really not saying much.
We ate there on several occasions and DB seems to be getting worse with every visit. Even getting 1 Michelin star did not help. The service and food quality are spotty at best, and one never knows when and if DB will be having a 'good day'.
Remember, this is a "Wine Bar and kitchen" with a big emphasis on the 'wine' part of the name. The bar is prominent, taking the best part of this rather small restaurant and with it, the best seats in the house. Dining customers are left to sit too close to the entrance door, which is a good way to catch a cold in winter months. Or sit across from the bathroom, not too appetizing, right? Other tables are very close to a bar. As customers at the bar drink more and more, they get louder and louder. Not only you will hear, unwittingly, intimate details of their personal lives (much more that you never wanted to know or cared about), you will no longer able to hear your companions or servers. So, if you came in expecting a nice, civilized, quiet dinner - lower your expectations. Way lower...
Oh, and do not ask for another table, even if there are several empty tables. Your request will be frowned upon and ultimately denied.
Speaking of drinks, Flights seemed to be a good way to try different wines. You can see them as a total waste or a small $13-$14 price to pay for tasting some pretty bad wine, yet avoid wasting even more money on a bottle. Red Flight Europe is a good example. Wrongo Dongo tastes as if it came in a screw top bottle, while Barbera and Syrah are only marginally better.
Last night dinner was the worst. Special white truffles over pasta dish must have been less than 1oz total weight, and for $28 it is a highway robbery.
White shrimp was dry, while broccoli rabe was overcooked AND tasteless.
The Organic Chicken 'Under a Brick' should have stayed under a brick where it belongs, not on a dish served to paying customers. The one brought to our table was a tough little bird. Even KFC makes tender and juicier chickens. This chicken is one of DB’s signature dishes, but if they continue serving such nails-hard poultry, this bar/restaurant might loose its Michelin star as quickly as Mario Batali. Wild Bass is a better choice, even though Saffron-Clam Orzo served with it is overcooked and bitter tasting. Luckily, the portions are small, so you don’t really get a lot of bad food. Also bread was served ice-cold and so was butter.
DB however has a nice ambiance (when its not too busy). If you are stuck in Forest Hills, your choices are very limited, so you might decide to take your chances with DB. Otherwise, do yourself a favor, look elsewhere.
DB does however has a nice ambiance when its not too crowded. If you are stuck in Forest Hills, your choices are very limited, so you might take your chances with DB. Otherwise, do yourself a favor, look elsewhere.
DB is The King of Queens – DB is amongst one of the best restaurants in Queens. The service is excellent, fast without being pushy, refined without being snobbish. The menu is innovative, yet recognizable and the meats, cheeses and wines are not only an amazing variety, but also of amazing taste and quality.
The Grilled Calamari with White Beans, Rosemary & Arugula is different but very well prepared and very well portioned for $10. The Chilled Green Asparagus is deceivingly good (perhaps it is the pieces of Chorizo).
The Cured Meats & Cheeses are, for the most part, outstanding. You really need to know what you like and don’t like otherwise you can encounter a taste or texture that you may not prefer.
I’ve tried over a half dozen different entrées at DB over the past year and all have been great. The Organic Chicken is surprisingly moist and tasty (chicken is not exactly my thing) and a very nice sized portion. The grilled hanger steak is absolutely amazing. Well seasoned, perfectly moist on the inside and crusty on the outside. The Duck special they had last week was absolutely to die for – moist, well portioned and surrounded by the crispiest, most delectable mini Brussels Sprouts. I have yet to have the hamburger, but everyone I know that has had it raves about it.
The wine selection is very extensive and for the most part outstanding. I read several reviews that the wine is heavily overpriced. This is not a phenomenon unique to DB. Pretty much very restaurant has massive mark ups on their wine – get over it or don’t order any.
The dessert area is lacking for sure, but I’m not someone really into sweets so perhaps I’m a poor example.
The cost is admittedly high for Queens, but no higher than many lower quality places in Manhattan. Parking is easy and convenient and the area is very safe to be around late at night.
STAY AWAYfrom an OVERPRICED burger joint SNOB RUDEattitute – my rating of 1 star is generous! i have spent probably an average of one thousand dollars a month here, which translates into once a week as an average. i have noticed a steady decline in the quality of their selections, especially their meats. when they first opened it seemed as though it was prime, since definitely choice, and surprisingly "select" one of the lower grades of beef. i guess danny feels his preparation of the food will fool us!
i have sent back sirlon steak au priove, and hanger steak several times.
the cheese board is boring and overpriced as well, espcially their weekly specials hoping to confuse people with fancy french names whereas it is merely a form of basic french goat cheese at most.
the apetizers are somewhat interesting but mostly boring, especialy the salads.
he is majorly "understaffed" in servers, and bus help.
he is also "not" obliging for customers who may be allergic to potatos, he will either not serve it, with no substitute, or serve it and make you buy a $5.00 platter of arugula! do you really need the $5 dollars!!!
yes the flights are exciting, but "irregular" as far as fullness goes, and often the bartender gets argumentative about it. should i pay you 25 cents more?
no sooner do you put your wine glass down and your hand is nearly cutoff with a waiter seemingly hiding behind a wall waiting to grabe your glass....it is very comical.
besides the entrees being a little overpriced, especially for the glorified food he is trying to portray, the simple deserts are way past conversation. go to carvel across the street. all in all this restaurant "did" have potential, it is actually sad how a restaurantaur trys so hard at the begining, and then loses it when the "ego" comes in. oh yes the ego that is conveyed throughout his "everchanging staff". it starts with audrey the snobbish extremely rude hostess. she needs a lessen in hospitality. the everchanging bartenders pick up on her rudeness as well. not what you would expect in a "neighborhood" restaurant. i guess they forget that. danny might be a nice guy but he doesnt allow you to see it. he nevers comes over to a table to greet you. he comes across as "standoffish" as though he cant be bothered! i guess it comes fromhis mother, who actually is charming when you get to know her.....but you can see the french snobbish way starts there. but as least she comes to talk and greet. one of the other posts eluded to the house ever buying you a return drink.....are you kidding most patrons talk from table to table and actually say how "cheap" they are there. they will and have never bought a drink and i have spent over $25,000 there over a few years since they opened. .......but no more....no more abuse....when i and we go out to eat...we wish to be treated like a human being, not like cattle.
ashame! maybe they should buy a hospitality book.
the italians believe in breaking bread...that means sharing back....a lessen to learn here. oh the only good point beside the calarmari, is that one to two waitresses are nice and one waiter....lets see how long he stays....enough said......lets go back to parkside where for 50 to 75 dollars they the house will buy you at least 2 drinks constantly...but most important treat you right.....ashame!!!
A Positive Experience – My date and I went to Danny Brown on a busy Friday night and decided to dine by the bar. The barkeep was courteous and knowledgable and was very helpful in helping us narrow down our wine selection to a delicious Argentian Malbec. Our main courses were decent and were both delighted by our dessert which was paired with a crisp sparkling Italian dessert wine. Definitely will go again.
Don't Listen to the Few Haters – Danny Brown is superb. My wife and I have been there at least a dozen times and have always been treated to great service and unique, flavorful cuisine. We have introduced Danny Brown to 3 other couples who in turn have become regulars. As far as the few negative reviews go, all I can say is this - we all know people, freinds, family, etc., who seem to have bad experiences wherever they go.
Diners Beware!!!! – My friends and I came here last weekend and as we were going to order our entrees the Rude and unprofessional hostess or manager came by the table and accused us of not paying our bill the last time we came in for a birthday dinner which we paid the waitress in Cash.. I guess that was our mistake, to pay in cash, but to have a hostess humiliate and accuse us at the dinner table for not paying a bill is very unprofessional. Danny Brown should hire honest and reliable wait staff. The only good thing about this restaurant is that it has a very big wine list. This is the worst restaurant I have ever been to in all my years of dining out.
Bad service Bad food – The service was very lacking and the staff was very rude, especially after i informed them the was a six legged creature in one of my dishes and asked for a refund, since i had lost my appetite after seeing such a sight in my food. I will never go back to this establishment and would not reccomend this place to anyone, heed my advice!
Incredible cuisine – I go to restaurants regularly and this was the best meal that I've had in a long time. I had the duck special and it was delectable - well-seasoned, so tender and juicy, not too fatty, which is one of the challenges when cooking duck. The wait staff was personable. They were willing to accommodate our needs (a friend wanted a double portion of an appetizer to eat as a meal). Our waiter made recommendations for wine after asking how heavy or light we like our wine, etc. The atmosphere has a nice upscale feel so that you can spend a quiet evening with your love, but relaxed enough that you can have a nice family dinner if you choose. For the dessert I had the apple crisp. It was pretty good, not too sweet. Presentation of the food is typical of a restaurant of this type. I'm definitely going back again.
My regular spot.. – When DB's opened last year, my boyfriend and myself loved it instantly. The food is consistent, the service is good.
We probably frequent DB at least 3 times a month. The food is moderately priced, higher end for the neighborhood but way worth it.
The atmosphere is perfect, perfect lighting and volume levels. Seats comfy,, especially if you get one of the booth seats!
As mentioned earlier, we are regulars as the staff know us by name.
The unforunate part is recently we brought our family there for a dinner, and we felt a bit shafted. We were a party of 6, and the family does not have the most advanced tasting palet- we just wanted to bring them to our favorite spot in the neighborhood. We ordered the calamari, which is not something we have had before. After we tried it, it was really not good- I have personally tried almost everything on the menu.... and everything is Excellent. With that said, we asked if we could get another dish b/c we thought the calamari would be cooked and breaded. We were told no. I was embarassed and very upset. As I mentioned earlier, we spend $300 there each month, and the bill that evening was over $250. This left a very bad taste in my mouth. I have not approached the staff about it, but hopefully they read the reviews. 1 app was all I wanted :)
I went there last night,, and had an amazing meal, good to the last drop.
We just hope in a neighborhood spot, the neighborhood regulars could be taken care of and recognized more often.
I do highly recommend this spot.
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