It’s interesting how each generation tends to be more knowledgeable and better off than the previous one. As far as food is concerned, growing up in Southern Spain and coming from a mixed home family in which my dad’s side (Basque origin) took pride on eating and drinking well (and in generous quantities) and my mom’s side (Chinese origin) brought an impossible mix of flavors to the table, I was exposed to different types of dishes from a young age, sometimes resulting in interesting, and not always successful, cross cultural meals.
But it was not until I moved to the States for college that I tried sushi and a new (and costly) addiction was created. I could have it for breakfast, lunch and dinner. It is such an addiction that, when pregnant for the first time, I was able to find an Ob-Gyn that told me that, “even though it is not recommended, you can eat a bit of sushi, always from reputable places and no more than once a week”. Boom! My doctor had told me I could eat sushi when preggers!! And when I got the concerned disapproving look from other diners, I would half smile and say: “My doctor allowed me to”. In any case, my two daughters are both healthy kids and, for some reason, have both embraced sushi (mostly rolls at the moment) since a very young age, to the point that it is a request when we order in (along with pizza as a second runner). Ha! I feel bad for their potential suitors: they’d better be ready to know good sushi joints to take the girls if they want the relationship to go anywhere.
One of the places we used to go get my only once-a-week doctor approved sushi fix is Hibino. We have been going there since they first opened and for all type of occasions: surprise birthday parties, friends visiting from out of town, quick obento fix… And it never disappoints.
Hibino is strategically located on Henry Street, opposite two playgrounds, which is great if the little ones get antsy in the restaurant. Even though the decor is nothing to rave about, it is a spacious place with the typical bar where you can see the chefs preparing your food and they usually accommodate strollers in the back.
Their specialty is not sushi, but Kyoto-style obanzai (the equivalent to Japanese tapas home cooking), which change from day to day depending on market offers, along with a selection of wines, beers and sakes. We have tried most of their food and it is really delicious. They do not have a kids menu, but they do have rice for those not so adventurous little eaters. They also have high chairs and offer their little ones age appropriate dishes and cutlery (so much more convenient than seeing you little ones trying to poke their eyes out with chopsticks).
We love going here and have taken advantage of their week lunch special: the obento box, for $10.00 you score a miso soup, and the obento box with an entree of the day, a side of obanzai, rice and salad.
Their bathroom is ample, minimalistic, clear and it does have a changing table.
The only con is that they don’t take reservations and it tends to get pretty busy in the evenings, so if you don’t get there just when they open, the wait could be a bit too much if you go with the little ones. But then, you have two playgrounds across the street where you could wait until you are called in. The food is really worth some playground time.
333 Henry Street
Brooklyn, NY 11201
Monday – Friday:
Lunch 12:00pm – 2:30pm
Sunday – Thursday:
Dinner 5:30pm – 10:00pm
Friday – Saturday:
Dinner 5:30pm – 10:30pm