The night before leaving Japan for Christmas back in the US, I grabbed a late dinner. Had a beef filet Rossini style, which has foie gras and a truffle sauce over it. Sounds kind of fancy, right? Except that it only cost me about 1400 yen (USD $15) and it was at Denny’s. Whaaaat?
Obviously, Denny’s in Japan is a lot different from “real” Denny’s in the US. For one thing, their breakfast food is a joke. It’s pretty much the same kind of generic “Western breakfast” stuff you can get anywhere in Japan, even at Yoshinoya in the mornings: 1 egg, two mini sausages, and a cabbage salad. There’s no Grand Slam, no Moons Over My Hammy, no other disgustingly greasy and delicious American breakfast foods. And the pancakes. OH GOD DON’T GET ME STARTED ON J-DENNY’S PANCAKES. Too late. They’re about the size of what we might call silver dollar pancakes if the chef took the size of a silver dollar as a literal unit of measurement. And you only get like 3 of them and they’re dry and gross. Yet somehow they try to market this as a real stack of pancakes you would get at real Denny’s when in reality you’d get more volume if you get your breakfast set with the half piece of toast they also offer. Ugh. In short: don’t ever get J-Denny’s pancakes if you’re expecting real pancakes. You will be angry, disappointed, hungry, and scarred for the rest of your life.
Anyway, the filet I had was good. I’m actually starting to mind J-Denny’s less and less. Even though they have none of the menu items you can get in the US, they have sandwiches and pasta and stuff that are decent, and they have pretty good coffee. Not really college student stay up all night coffee, but decently good coffee. It’s a little more expensive than the other J-family restaurants, but for variety it’s OK. I guess recently they’re trying to improve their image even more, offering gourmet ingredients in wannabe fancy dishes like the Rossini filet I had, or the truffle and prosciutto pasta they offered last month. Kind of interesting, although I’d trade it all for a Breakfast Dagwood or a Moons with fries.