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Consolidated HNL/Honolulu/Waikiki/Oahu Restaurants & Bars Thread (2020 and Onward)

Old Mar 5, 22, 1:51 pm
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Last edit by: FlyinHawaiian
Posts prior to 2020 may be found in the following archived thread with the note that several restaurants or bars referenced may no longer be open: https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/hawaii/700557-consolidated-hnl-honolulu-waikiki-oahu-restaurants-bars-thread.html
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Consolidated HNL/Honolulu/Waikiki/Oahu Restaurants & Bars Thread (2020 and Onward)

Old Jul 22, 22, 3:54 pm
  #136  
 
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Favorite Restaurants with Outdoor Dining

Anyone care to help generate a list of their favorite HNL/Oahu restaurants offering outdoor dining?

My favorites are:

Plumeria Beach House https://www.kahalaresort.com/Dining/...ch-House-menus

Lei Lei's Lei Lei's Bar and Grill - Home

Aki https://www.facebook.com/Japanese-Re...7218428731628/

Himalayan Kitchen https://www.himalayankitchenhawaii.com/

Le's Banh Mi https://www.yelp.com/biz/le-s-banh-mi-honolulu

Last edited by 747FC; Sep 13, 22 at 3:53 am Reason: Spelling
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Old Jul 25, 22, 7:57 pm
  #137  
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July Recap:

Upscale
Hawaii Kai - Roy's (The Original). I had not been to the Hawaii Kai location for many years. Gone is the loud and raucous atmosphere replaced by a very quiet and relaxed setting. This was a pleasant surprise. I sent some first time visitors to the Ko Olina outpost for a special family birthday dinner and they raved about their experience.

Midrange
Manoa - Feast (Dinner) - I'm working my way through the menu; tried the JFC Fried Chicken plate and liked it (still a sucker for hamburger steak, though).
Kakaako - Panya Bistro and Bakery was still good. Even better was Tang Contemporary Cafe next door for dinner. I really like the cozy space and great service; the beef stroganoff was excellent.

Casual
Beretania/Makiki - Asian Mix in the ground floor parking lot of the Beretania Safeway. This was my favorite find of the trip. I heard it was a great place to get Chinese roasted meats without having to go into Chinatown and I was all for that. Then Honolulu Magazine featured their roast duck in their latest issue so I knew I had to go there. The first visit I made the mistake of not pre-ordering the duck so they were out by the time I showed up (about 4 pm on a weekday; they ran out about 2:30). I ordered the siu yuk (roast pork with crispy skin), beef broccoli and gau gee noodles and there were all excellent and not greasy. I went back after ordering a half duck and it was phenomenal.
Kaimuki - Brick Fire Tavern. I had a Monday night open and Ili'ili was closed, so I dined in to give them a second chance. I am not a fan; our pizza was not only soggy but not even that hot, despite coming out of the oven and straight to our table.
Kakaako
- I had to call a quick audible while in the area and found Niu Baguette BBQ & Noodle Soup on Yelp; it's on Cooke and Queen in the old Lopez Building where the old Tsukenjo's (RIP) take out window was. The banh mi were ok as were the summer rolls. Nothing spectacular, but it was good and decent food.

Habibi and Aloha Vietnamese were both on my list, but I didn't make it this time; will try to make in there on my next visit.
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Old Aug 20, 22, 12:29 pm
  #138  
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Originally Posted by 747FC View Post
Anyone care to help generate a list of their favorite HNL/Oahu restaurants offering outdoor dining?
Here are some notes for this month:

In Kaka'ako, we had outdoor dinners at Istanbul and Panya and they were both excellent. I'm not sure if I will make it to Piggy Smalls' this trip but they also have outdoor seating.

In Waikiki, I had an excellent dinner at Roy's Eating House 1849. I recall that the reviews when they first opened were not good; glad to know they have upped their game. I also noted the menu at Herringbone across the plaza looked good, including a lobster roll. I also had dinner at Deck and the food and service were both solid; the portions of the Catch of the Day (grilled ono) were very generous, plus they offered a 15% Kama`aina Discount. I'd be tempted to go back for brunch.

I had a very mediocre and over-priced brunch at Hau Tree Lanai. We had a beachside table and decent service but the Canadian bacon in the Eggs Benedict was replaced by shaved ham and portions all around were skimpy. I'm sadly putting this place on my "do not visit" list for now.

Last edited by FlyinHawaiian; Aug 25, 22 at 10:45 am
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Old Aug 27, 22, 3:04 am
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Originally Posted by FlyinHawaiian View Post
Here are some notes for this month:

In Kaka'ako, we had outdoor dinners at Istanbul and Panya and they were both excellent. I'm not sure if I will make it to Piggy Smalls' this trip but they also have outdoor seating.

In Waikiki, I had an excellent dinner at Roy's Eating House 1849. I recall that the reviews when they first opened were not good; glad to know they have upped their game. I also noted the menu at Herringbone across the plaza looked good, including a lobster roll. I also had dinner at Deck and the food and service were both solid; the portions of the Catch of the Day (grilled ono) were very generous, plus they offered a 15% Kama`aina Discount. I'd be tempted to go back for brunch.

I had a very mediocre and over-priced brunch at Hau Tree Lanai. We had a beachside table and decent service but the Canadian bacon in the Eggs Benedict was replaced by shaved ham and portions all around were skimpy. I'm sadly putting this place on my "do not visit" list for now.
Thanks for those recommendations!

Originally Posted by FlyinHawaiian View Post
My mom went to the soft-reopening of Mariposa at the Ala Moana Neiman Marcus and had the $34(!!!) lobster club sandwich and said it was very good, but not great.
Ate there today for the first time in many years. I had the now-$37 lobster club sandwich. It was very tasty and very filling. Ridiculously expensive, but good. My wife had the Laksa (seafood) curry, which was great.

Note: There is limited outdoor seating. Reservations are important, at least on this Friday afternoon.

Last edited by FlyinHawaiian; Aug 28, 22 at 12:16 am Reason: consecutive posts merged
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Old Aug 27, 22, 3:35 am
  #140  
 
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Dagon

Tried Dagon twice this week. Burmese food. First time was on friends recommendation. Second time was to further explore the menu.

First meal was superior, even though we ordered some of same items. Garlic noodles were good, sort of like Pad Thai, but less sweet. The lamb and the pumpkin dishes were good as well. Dishes are not overly salty, a fault I find in many eateries. Salads were interesting. I enjoyed the Ginger salad best.

Dagon is located on King Street in Moilili.
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Old Aug 28, 22, 12:22 am
  #141  
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Another casual place with outdoor seating that I found this trip is Greek Marina in the Koko Marina Shopping Center in Hawaii Kai. It's not exactly waterfront; it's in the corner of the mall by the Kona Brewing Company and has a small view of the old Chevron fuel dock and a little of Kuapa Pond. I thought the serving portion sizes were very generous and the food was very tasty. They are also BYOB and seem to do a brisk take out business.

We also had dinner at Hale Vietmam in Kaimuki and enjoyed their stuffed chicken wings and bun dishes.
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Old Aug 28, 22, 1:17 am
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Originally Posted by FlyinHawaiian View Post
I also had dinner at Deck and the food and service were both solid; the portions of the Catch of the Day (grilled ono) were very generous, plus they offered a 15% Kama`aina Discount. I'd be tempted to go back for brunch....
I have had brunch at Deck. In fact, I think I reviewed it here when it first opened. It was ok, not the best but certainly not the worst eggs benny I have ever had. The atmosphere and view is great and I think I said at the time that it is where I would bring out of town guests for brunch. My favorite breakfast place remains Aloha Kitchen. Tiny little place on Ena Rd. off of Ala Moana just up from the old Wailana Coffee House. There is always a line up now since it exploded on social media but it goes fast despite the size of the place. I took a friend on Tuesday at 8am, a half hour after they opened, and we still waited about 15 minutes. No reservations, just a paper sign up sheet on a table out front. Best eggs benny on the island and the most amazing coco mac nut Japanese souffl pancakes. Locally owned (Japanese), fast friendly service and awesome food.

A friend took me for Indian food on Saturday at Spice Up House of Indian Cuisine on S. King. Amazing! Very authentic with both meat and vegetarian choices and some of the best Indian food I have ever had. They ask how spicy you want your food. We started with papadums with two really nice dipping sauces. He had mulligatawny because he loves it and says it is one of the best he has had. He then had his usual lamb vindaloo, extra spicy. I tried it and it made me sweat but it wasn't heat just for heat's sake - it was flavorful and delicious with a good bite. I had Rogan Josh, kind of a bit more than medium spicy and it was perfect and amazing. An order of garlic naan and I have to say, it was a truly awesome meal. I will be back for sure, very very soon.

I drove by Habibi Tasty on the way back and he was open and busy. That is next on my list. I had wanted to go that night but I am really glad we went to Spice Up instead.
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Last edited by Finkface; Aug 28, 22 at 1:31 am
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Old Sep 6, 22, 1:19 pm
  #143  
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Finishing off August, we had dinner at Moku Kitchen and was able to snag an outside table; other than some pesky flies, it was lovely. We also ate at et al. and again, the food was solid.

For Korean, Young's Kalbee in Aiea is closed for a few weeks so I went to an old faithful place for my meat jun fix; Soon's in the Salt Lake Shopping Center. It's cash-only.

I hope to be able to do Habibi's this month.
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Old Sep 12, 22, 8:31 pm
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Search for the Perfect Banh Mi (continued)

Happened upon Bella Banh Mi today, and it now places top in my list of Honolulu Banh Mi eateries. As usual, I had the chicken variety. The sauce was tasty, the contents filling, and the baguette was hot and not so large that the sandwich contents were overpowered by dough.

Bella is located at 1630 Liliha Street, with parking immediately behind. It is open 8:00-2:00 and is takeaway only.
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Old Sep 15, 22, 12:16 pm
  #145  
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Two newer places for pastries (sweet and savory) are Wallflour Bake Shop and The Local General Store

Wallflour can be found at the Saturday Kaka`ako Farmers Market or Mondays at Ili'Ili Cash and Carry (we went to the latter at about 830 and they were already selling out of items) https://www.wallflourbakeshop.com/

The Local General Store can be found at Kaimuki Superette on alternating Sundays or at the Wednesday Blaisdell Farmers Market. https://www.thelocalgeneralstorehi.com/

We really liked Wallflour's offerings; General Stores are also very good. Both compliment other standbys such as Breadshop and b patisserie.

On the windward side, there's a bakery at the Sunday Kailua Town Farmers Market that makes excellent macadamia nut sticky buns.

The Local General Store

Wallflour
Originally Posted by Calcifer View Post
There's a vegan soft serve place in that strip mall [across from the old Honolulu Stadium] called Niu Soft Serve that opened recently (before they were only at various farmers' markets, I think)
We went there today and tried their kulolo sundae with a swirl mix of niu and ube soft serve and it was very tasty and refreshing. We both agreed that the soft serve wasn't too icy, which was something we've encountered at other coconut-based ice cream and soft serve offerings.
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Last edited by FlyinHawaiian; Sep 15, 22 at 8:24 pm
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Old Sep 26, 22, 2:38 pm
  #146  
 
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Originally Posted by FlyinHawaiian View Post
Here are some notes for this month:

In Kaka'ako, we had outdoor dinners at Istanbul and Panya and they were both excellent. I'm not sure if I will make it to Piggy Smalls' this trip but they also have outdoor seating.

I
Went to Istanbul last night for the first time. Food was excellent! We had the Mezze platter, Lamb shank tangine, and Iskander Doner. Deserts were Baklava (upposed to be Pistachio Ice Cream, but looked and tasted like vanilla) and HATAY KUNEFE (a cheese-based dish that three of us did not care for, but the fourth loved it all).

While the food was very good, there were a variety of service issues: First, while we were able to get a reservation for outdoor seating (this required multiple emails and phone calls), but on arrival they had us down for indoor seating. When we complained/explained, we were given outdoor seating. Second, three of our four main courses arrived as ordered. The fourth was not what we ordered. There was absolutely no communication to the patron without food (i.e., "Sorry sir, but we will get you your order pronto.")

The place was packed, so hopefully the poor service we experienced was not indicative of the usual.
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Old Sep 26, 22, 9:27 pm
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Originally Posted by 747FC View Post
Deserts were Baklava (upposed to be Pistachio Ice Cream, but looked and tasted like vanilla) and HATAY KUNEFE (a cheese-based dish that three of us did not care for, but the fourth loved it all).
So they served you baklava instead of pistachio ice cream?

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Old Sep 27, 22, 7:57 am
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Made the foolish decision to drive out to Ko Olina one afternoon last week, as the traffic was horrible, but it turned out to be worth it for dinner at Noe (Italian restaurant with a Japanese chef inside the Four Seasons). Whipped ricotta starter was popular, meatballs were great, and the truffle pasta was delicious. But boy was I impressed with the venison. Need to go back as I want to try a number of other menu options
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Old Sep 27, 22, 10:50 am
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Originally Posted by 747FC View Post
Anyone care to help generate a list of their favorite HNL/Oahu restaurants offering outdoor dining?
Arancino di Mare restaurant, either at the Marriott Waikiki or at the Kahala Hotel. Especially good with a larger party to share dishes. Ask for outside seating as both locations also have indoor dining.

Also, The Eating House 1849 in the International Market Place. Yeah, it's touristy and at tourist prices, but the food and service is superior. Ask for outside seating and be prepared to be bumped into indoor seating. Pineapple martinis are supposed to be delicious (I have not tried yet).
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Last edited by dlaue; Sep 27, 22 at 11:02 am
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Old Sep 27, 22, 11:03 am
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Originally Posted by DELee View Post
So they served you baklava instead of pistachio ice cream?

David
LOL. No, the baklava is supposed to come with pistachio ice cream, but ours tasted like vanilla.
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