60° Good Morning
60° Good Morning

Houlihan's: A fall from grace

Fish taco at Houlihan's in East Farmingdale

Fish taco at Houlihan's in East Farmingdale Photo Credit: Newsday, 2011 / Joan Reminick

Last year, Houlihan's pleasantly surprised me with one dish after another of appealing made-from-scratch fare. Based on a recent return visit, though, I'd have to say the romance is over.

I hit the East Farmingdale restaurant during the “nooner” lunch period — from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. — during which time any order (for parties of 6 or fewer) is guaranteed to arrive within 15 minutes  — or it's free. Our meal came after about 14 minutes 59 seconds.

A lunch special ($9.98) of fish taco on a flour (not the traditional soft corn) tortilla  had been made with tilapia, the fish itself hardly discernible beneath a heavy cloak of deep-fried panko bread crumbs. Sharing tortilla space: napa cabbage, pico de gallo made with pale chopped tomato, chipotle mayo, sour cream and honey-cumin dressing, everything sort of glopped together. Accompanying sweet potato fries were lukewarm; a crock of cheese-capped French onion soup amounted to liquid salt.

Salt, again, predominated in a pal’s French dip sandwich, thinly sliced roast beef blanketed in provolone cheese on a toasted torpedo roll with dipping "jus" on the side.

Better – although unbelievably messy — was another friend’s “veggie” club: rosemary and bean hummus, field greens, goat cheese, provolone cheese, balsamic tomato relish, basil and red onions on toasted whole-grain bread.

Houlihan’s in East Farmingdale is at 923 Broadhollow Rd., 631-249-4828. There are also branches in Westbury (725 Merrick Ave., 516-222-8010) and Lake Grove (4000 Middle Country Rd., 631-588-0500).

Above: Fish taco and sweet potato fries at Houlihan's, East Farmingdale


We're revamping our Comments section. Learn more and share your input.

Latest reviews