At the stylish new Hoshi Sushi & Hibachi in Patchogue, kids develop a taste for hibachi early on. Right after the chef's knife-clanging food-flinging performance, a year-old baby was seen sucking on a pacifier her mom had first swiped in the sauce of her own hibachi chicken. "She doesn't have any teeth yet," the mother announced.
The surprise star of that night's dinner came from the kitchen menu: Tofu teriyaki. Cubes of fresh, soft Japanese tofu, lightly coated with tempura flour, were flash fried before being drizzled with tempura sauce. A bite started with a light crunch, yielding to a creamy and unctuous interior. A coup for vegetarians.
From the sushi bar came a fresh and pretty rendition of yellowtail with jalapeño, the fish and micro greens judiciously drizzled with yuzu sauce. A peanut and avocado roll was first rate, loaded with nuts. A crazy roll -- lightly seared black pepper tuna with avocado, tempura flakes and spicy tuna -- while good, could have done without some of the rice.
There was drama in the chirashi bowl, which harbored a battery-powered light cube, as well as fresh finfish and the ubiquitous surimi and cooked shrimp. Thankfully, no light show materialized in the impeccable sushi assortment, ordered with finfish only.
Chicken yaki soba, a stir-fry of noodles and vegetables, held overcooked pieces of chicken breast that tasted reheated. But shrimp tempura, available as both an appetizer and an entree, featured a flaky filigree crust enclosing large and perfectly cooked shellfish; tempura-battered vegetables accompanied. Fierce frying going on in this kitchen.
Instead of the usual deep-fried ice cream, Hoshi uses an outside supplier for such Italian desserts as coppa stracciatella, a layering of vanilla gelato with chocolate flakes, and a cappuccino truffle.
Talk about fusion fare.