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Coming Up

  • Next on 'Ono Kine Grindz:

    The Wedding Cafe, Manoa

    Recently Consumed:

    Zaney's, Downtown Honolulu
    Bob's Bar-B-Que, Kalihi
    Restaurant Yamagen, Moili'ili

    Below you will find a never ending list of restaurants that I want to visit or re-visit:

    Young's Fish Market
    Alan Wong's Pineapple Room
    Cafe Sistina
    Indigo Eurasian Cuisine
    Yakiniku Toraji
    Sushi Masa
    Ono Hawaiian Foods
    Tsukuneya Robata Grill

    If you would like to give me a tip on a new restaurant that is opening up, or give me a recommendation on some of your favorite restaurants, please send an e-mail to:

    onokinegrindz (at) yahoo (dot) com

    The following posts should be completed someday (!):

    New Diner's Drive In
    Border Grill
    Penang Malaysian
    Chez Panisse
    Zuni Cafe
    Indonesia Restaurant
    Boston's North End Pizza
    Happy Inn
    Kat's Sushi
    Fritz's European Bakery
    Makino Chaya
    Singapore/Bangkok Posts
    Chin's Kahala
    Hata Restaurant
    Ebisu Catering Service
    Bubba Burgers
    The Eggberts
    Blossoming Lotus
    Hamura Saimin Stand
    Bob's Big Boy

    WHEW! I hope to have them done by year's end!

    Upcoming adventures

    San Francisco, CA

    Sydney, NSW, Australia

    London, UK
    Paris, France
    Chicago, IL
    Seoul, South Korea
    I won't be able to visit Korea this year.
    San Francisco, CA
    New Orleans, LA
    Buenos Aires, Argentina
    Shanghai, China

    Hopefully, some of you can provide me with recommendations for some good eats!

Blogs I Read

'Onolicious Archives


« Like Like Drive Inn | Main | Ninja Sushi »

February 28, 2005



Mmm... interesting. I haven't seen/tried any of these before.

When I saw the line "poke" I thought it was an action you were doing to your food (or your website viewer) *LOL*

The poi looks intriguing. I thought it was black sesame at first. And the haupia looks yummy. It looked quite large but then when I saw it being dwarfed by the poi bowl, I concurred... three servings probably would have just touched the sides...


that lomi's weak. the last time i was in hawaii, the only hawaiian food i had was from marujyu market in the waimalu shopping center, but it was damn fine.


Great close up photos. Sure makes me hungry for Hawaiian food. If you haven't already, when you have time, you've got to stop by Yama's and try their chicken lau lau. Moist, tasty and healthy. Or their chicken pork combo lau lau. Their chocolate haupia's hits the spot. They even have strawberry haupia.


What a disappointment huh..Reid..! :(



Sad to say that is the sorriest looking Hawaiian food I've seen in a long time. The lomi salmon looked like bottled Mexican salsa (What...New York City?) and the poi resembled watered down wall paste. Couldn't see much ahi and limu koho in the poke but it seemed to have a little ogo sprinkled here and there for taste. Ahem...remind me not to go there.


Hey Reid
Kalua pig somehow reminded me of kahlua! Poi -> reminds of Pho. Poke -> er..Pokemon? :p How do you pronounce all these Hawaiian dishes?
I am most interested in the haupia (again this reminds me of savoury kueh from South East Asia). And I couldnt help but notice Lance's comment about "chocolate haupia". Ohhh I would love some of that!
Btw have you located your jar of milo?

fish fish

Reid~ thanks so much for showing the poi. Fish Fish have been very curious bout this indigenous dish ever since I saw it in a tv programme. I was amazed by the amount of taro planted in Hawaii. Poi, my next time must try dish in Hawaii. *Hmmm... itsu kana~*


Hi AG,

Haupia is really good, but some places make it really sweet. This one's quite good as it has a good amount of coconut flavor and is not too sweet. As for poi, it's consumed like rice, and it's just as bland. Many people like to eat it with milk/sugar...a definite no-no in my book.

Hi Santos,

It is, most definitely. I haven't had Hawaiian food at Marujyu Market before. Now that you've given it the thumbs up, I'm definitely going to give it a go!

Hi lance,

Long time no hear! I'm not sure that I'll be going back to Yama's, but if I do, I will definitely try the lau lau. As far as chocolate and strawberry haupia is concerned, it sounds interesting.

Hi MrsT,

Definitely. Especially since the lunch was quite expensive. =(

Hi Clinton,

Noted! I'm going to be doing a post on both Ono's and Young's soon. Keep your eyes peeled. I'm also thinking of stopping by Fort Ruger Market this weekend, if I can.

Hi pinkcocoa,

kalua = ka loo-ah
poi = pronounced like koi only with a p
poke = poh-keh
haupia = how pee-ah

Hope those help. I'm a traditionalist, so I'm not too sure about chocolate haupia. Haupia is actually like a pudding. It's flavored using coconut milk and sugar. If you'd like a recipe for it, please let me know.

Chocolate haupia pie is really yummy. Maybe I'll make it soon and post the recipe. =)

Hi fish fish,

Hopefully you can come and visit us here. Poi doesn't really have much flavor to it. It's quite bland tasting.


dang, another one of my "to do" restaurants debunked by Reid :( I've seen thier menu in the "Room Service in Paradise" catalog for a long time now, and it looked so good. Too bad it was so underwhelming (that lomi salmon looks like gazpacho with all that extra water in it!)

To balance all this negativity though, let me make an unqualified recommendation that you try the 12th Avenue Grill, in Waialae. A few friends took me there for my birthday last night, and it was one of the most memorable dining experiences I've had in years. They even let you drink your wine/beer outside on the sidewalk as you wait for your table (it gets pretty busy, understandably so).

The food is unbelievable. Order yourself the steamed clams, and revel in utter amazment at how out-of-the-world flavorful the broth is (almost better than the clams themselves!). And the rigatoni butternut squash pasta is similarly amazing. This is my new favorite restaurant, and the atmosphere is nice and laid back too.



Where is 12th Avenue Grill located? I know of the Big City Diner on 12th and Waialae. Is it nearby? The BCD is my favorite when going back home.



I'm looking forward to your review on Ono's since I've never been there to eat. Passed by it zillions of times but never stopped. I always feel I make better Hawaiian food since I use the best ingredients but maybe someday I'll just bite the bullet and stroll in.


Hi Mr_Me,

I've heard about 12th Avenue Grill. I just haven't gotten around to going there yet. I've also heard that they built up quite a following. I was told that it was bistro-type dining.

Hi Clinton,

12th Avenue Grill is on 12th Avenue between Waialae and Harding, so I guess that would make it right around the corner from Big City Diner.

I think I'm going to have the lau lau at Ono's...that's what they are known for. Keep your eyes open. It should be coming up in a couple of weeks.


What a bummer about the Hawaiian plate. I haven't found a place that consistently serves good basic Hawaiian food.

I'm with Mr_Me, the 12th Avenue grill is awesome, although the wait can be daunting. When I ate there last year they didn't take reservations, which I don't get. It also won't fill a Hawaiian food craving ...


Another vote for 12th Ave. Grill. The Kimchee Steak Reuben is ridiculously good. Fantastic mac and cheese, too. Noisy as heck (it's all hard surfaces inside, so the sound just bounces all around), but the food and the service are excellent.


Hi Rae,

I'm going to do a post on Young's which is actually one of the better places to eat Hawaiian food at. Other than that, I'd have to say my favorite Hawaiian food restaurant is probably Helena's.

By the way, thanks for the tip on 12th Avenue Grill.

Hi Ryan,

Nice to hear from you again! You've been a bit quiet.

Since all of you have recommended 12th Avenue Grill, I'll make it a point to get there before the end of March. I'll post and let you all know what I think.

Thanks to you all for the recommendation!


Just returned from the Aquarium concert where Yama's catered and it was fantastic. We eat Hawaiian food often. This was as close to healthy Hawaiian food as it gets; it was perfect: Kalua pig was lean & NOT salty nor greasy at all. Lomi was great--very, very fresh firm ripe tomatoes, fresh firm salmon without too many onions, poke was mild and very fresh without overpowering sesame or soy so the fresh ahi flavor predominated which is a GOOD thing to us. Brownie with haupia was a suprise and a winner. Poi very fresh, chicken long rice perfect texture, chicken lau lau was the best I've eaten as it was lean and luau was not salty or muddy.


Yes, Yama's fish market was awesome until they moved to their bigger location. Now their food is OVERPRICED, POOR QUALITY, and TASTELESS. I guess they need to put the money in the rent/shop instead of in the food. I won't be eating here anymore. Hard meat and cartlidge in the beef stew and it tasted like water and tomato paste. the lomi salmon should be renamed lomi tomato and onions. So sad.

Tommy Salami

We went here the other day and were quite pleased. I had the same plate you reviewed, except for wasabi masago poke.

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