Thursday, June 20, 2013

Daneli's Deli (Balaclava) 06/2013

Daneli's is a hybrid. It's not quite what you expect from a delicatessen, it's not a cafe- they don't serve tea or coffee, it's a sort of mixed eat in/take away restaurant

with a reasonable but limited selection of deli.  There is a lot that's different and a lot that's the same about it since we last visited. What's the same, or similar, is the prices, it's remarkably inexpensive, the atmosphere, very friendly,
here Eli displays his good humour, the small tables, the continuous flow of customers getting take away or sitting and schmoozing.  What's different is the interior arrangements, the counter now runs length wise with tables in an L shape around it but what is especially different is the menu which, still kosher, now has all the old stuff and and an added Chinese selection. 
The menu's are up on the wall,

 not scratched out in chalk but legibly printed on clean posters.
 Meals are good size and mostly have good flavour but they lack any sort of delicacy. 
Chicken spring rolls, served with sweet chili sauce, are unique. They're large and they probably have the right ingredients but some how they taste like no other spring roll. The pastry is thick and not at all oily, the chicken dry. I think they might be healthier than most but we don't recommend them.
A large serve of chips, obviously hand cut, were very moorish,

Chicken salad had plenty of chicken and was satisfying.
 Sweet and sour chicken had an excess of peppers but a good, though meager, sauce.
The beef in black bean sauce was very mildly flavoured and also had an excess of coarsely cut peppers.
They are not licensed in part or in full - no BYO. 
Service was a little like sitting around the kitchen table and asking mum, Eli in this case, for whatever you needed, side plates, water, glasses, actually plastic cups, or whatever.
Score: 12.5 /20 but we'd happily take a kosher friends there for a casual meal.

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