Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Hawaii Part 3

I can't wrap up my Hawaii trip posts without talking about the 'local' food right?? I've been to Hawaii enough times where I can say I have eaten at many of the fancy establishments in town. They usually have a nice ambience with beautiful plating, don't get me wrong, but there is always just something missing when it comes to the food. But nothing hits my taste buds like the small joints we find around the island that cook up food resembling home cooking. The places I am about to list are discoveries we made on our recent trip where there is no denying that you can taste the LOVE in every bite! 
cold noodles with tempura combo
photo by Kristen K.

Jimbo Restaurant interior

When my in-laws first took us to Jimbo Restaurant for lunch in Honolulu, upon approach I thought nothing of it. It was located in a quaint building with no frills attached. We decided to come here since it was a very hot day and thought cold noodles would hit the spot. I ordered the cold Sansai skinny udon with grated daikon. To my surprise, it was sooo delicious! Come to find out, they make their noodles by hand daily! No wonder! The noodles were boiled to perfection with nice elasticity and it had almost a translucent quality to it. The Sansai, or mountain veggies, were crunchy, with the perfect dipping sauce, apparently prepared with the best of ingredients. J ordered the Yaki udon and the kids split the cold udon noodles with tempura combo. Everything was fantastic! If ever you're in Hawaii craving Japanese style noodles, then Jimbo Restaurant is the spot for you!

Jimbo Restaurant - 1936 S. King St., Ste. 103, Honolulu, HI 96826, (808) 947-2211

Your Kitchen, Kaimuki HI
Haupia Pineapple shave ice
photo by Michelle Sekine

On our last day in Hawaii, Your Kitchen is a spot we discovered after J researched on Yelp for a great shaved ice place. Of  course you have many of your local favorites around, however, we were in search of something new! Over all the other listings, what made Your Kitchen stand out, was that they make some of their own homemade syrups! At this point, we knew we had to try the shaved ice here for sure! Your Kitchen didn't disappoint! I had the Fujiyama which is made with homemade green tea syrup with Azuki beans, my sister-in-law had the haupia pineapple shaved ice with homemade syrups as well, and the rest of our tribe had the strawberry shaved ice. It really hit the spot, and its also nice that many of their flavors come in both small and large sizes. I hear the food is great here too!

Your Kitchen - 1423 10th Ave., Honolulu, HI 96716, (808) 203-7685
Ginger scallion steamed Opakapaka
If you're looking for fine dining Asian fusion cuisine, for not-so fine dining prices, go to Christie's!
Its located in an unpretentious strip mall, a very old one in fact, and I must admit, I thought maybe the interior of Christie's was going to be just as run-down. To my surprise, the interior was well lit, clean, with minimal decor. We had the pleasure of enjoying a meal here with some good friends, actually friends J grew up with. We all shared the Drunken Clam appetizer, which was light but flavorful! We all dipped our bread in the broth at the end too! Yes, that good! For my entree, I had the Boubon pork belly with mushrooms and pearl onions. The pork belly was so tender! Other entrees I got to sample that night were the Ginger scallion steamed Opakapaka (a local fish) and the Lilikoi BBQ short ribs with Okinawan purple potatoes. At the end, the kids dived into the Lychee sorbet, as the adults shared the homemade bread pudding with Kahlua brown butter and brulee bananas a la mode. Yum!

Christie's - 98-020 Kamehameha Hwy., Aiea, HI 96701, (808) 484-4511
The Whole Ox

Dry Aged Burger
photo by Joo H.

We discovered The Whole Ox through J's good friend Roger, who took us there for lunch after a fun-filled day at the Ala Moana Beach park. He claimed that this was his weekly go-to spot! A butcher/deli, let me just say, they know how to do meat well! We had the dry aged burger cooked to perfection, and oh was it flavorful and juicy! We also had the 'special' at the time, a beef brisket with homemade slaw and potato salad right in the sandwich! Oh my, the crunchy coleslaw, with the tender beef briskets, how can you go wrong? Don't forget to order the fried potatoes and homemade pickles which compliment  any or their sandwiches! Did I mention they serve breakfast too? I'm definitely going there for breakfast next time I'm in town!

The Whole Ox - 327 Keawe St., Honolulu, HI, 96813