Discover some of the most incredible dining experiences right here. We are pleased to share some of our adventures with you! Enjoy a Taste of Oahu Dining from malasada at leonards bakery to Chun Wah Kam Noodle Factory, Kapolei
DINING IN HAWAII KAI
By Lisa Scontras | Photos by Justin R. Dotson
Situated at Kalanianaole Highway and Lunalilo Home Road, Koko Marina is a great spot for waterfront dining. And while many Oahu waterfront venues cater more to tourists, you’ll find eateries here are filled with locals. Tables along the waterfront are a great place to gather with friends to watch the sun set over the marina while noshing on your favorite cuisine. Greek, Italian, Mexican — Hawaii Kai residents don’t need to go very far for a great meal out.
Kona Brewing Company
It’s not just the local beer, but there is a certain kind of magic to eating outside. The fresh air, sunshine, cool breeze, evening stars, make any meal extra special at the Kona Brewing Company. Open-air tables along the waterfront and overlooking the docks, marina, Hawaii Kai and the Ko’olau Mountain Range give this restaurant a real neighborhood feel.
The menu has a luscious variety of pupu items (the roasted garlic is a must-try, served with focaccia bread and creamy gorgonzola cheese). For a main course, choose from fresh fish, steak, pork chops, ribs, and incredible pizzas. Or if you prefer a light choice, try the strawberry spinach salad, with toasted macadamia nuts, sweet onions and a house-made strawberry vinaigrette on the side.
And then there’s the beer. KBC’s beer selection is extensive, with 24 tap choices at the bar and plenty more from a bottle — from very blonde to black, from tangy to hoppy to roasty, and everything in between. The beer sampler is a must for first-timers.
In the bar, local musicians provide entertainment ranging from traditional and contemporary Hawaiian to blues and jazz every Friday, Saturday and Sunday evening.
Service is excellent here. The staff is hip, friendly and casual.
Located in the back of Koko Marina, this Zippy’s may be the only one on the island to offer such great waterfront views.
President Bill Clinton ate here with the entire First Family — more than once. No wonder it’s a tradition for many Hawaii Kai families as well.
Hawaii Kai families and friends know Zippy’s as the place for their favorites — spaghetti with garlic bread, chili, bento breakfasts, hamburgers, Portuguese bean soup or comfort food saimin. Breakfast anytime. Sweet tooth acting up? Go for the famous Apple Napple, or check out Napoleon’s Bakery to take home something sweet. The Koko Marina Zippy’s is also one of the few to have added malasadas and andagi to the menu.
Seniors 65 and older are eligible for 10 percent off their bill with a Senior Club Card. Get yours today.
The Marina Room at Zippy’s Koko Marina is available for special events, company lunch meetings, family dinner parties or group brunch. Make your reservation today.
Celebrating something special? Nothing highlights a special event like a bottle of Chianti at Assagio. This location is Assagio lover’s favorite for the lovely marina-front views — the best seats in the house.
Assagio’s great wine list is accompanied by menu items and chef’s specials that are all delizioso.
A delightful light lunch option is a Caesar salad, made fresh right at your tableside. Perfectly fresh and garlicky down to the last crouton, you will wonder how you lived so long without this and vow to order it every time you come.
Still hungry? Mama Mia! The eggplant rollatini is a gooey, cheesy, decadent appetizer, which, if you’re really hungry is very similar, and just as dreamy as the baked stuffed eggplant entrée. The veal Scaloppini Alla Sorrentino is a to-die-for combination of tender veal, eggplant and mushrooms. The entrée comes with pasta, but if you would rather, there is an option to substitute sautéed vegetables, which is a healthier and most delicious alternative.
Reservations are recommended.
Bubbies Homemade Ice Cream
This for-real ice cream parlor is to die for. Bubbies has been manufacturing super-premium ice cream and gourmet ice cream desserts for more than 27 years in Hawaii. All 20 flavors and the special flavor of the month are made from the very best quality raw ingredients. It is the perfect ending to an amazing meal or anytime for a gourmet treat.
Try some of the Mochi ice cream — it’s one of the specialties — in exotic flavors including chocolate coconut, raspberry white chocolate, pistachio, guava, mango, green tea and tiramisu.
Bubbies Ice Cream may also be served at your favorite restaurant, as it has been on menus at the Halekulani Hotel, Sheraton Waikiki, Ihilani Resort & Spa, Roy’s Waikiki, Big City Diner, and Panda Express. Bubbies Mochi Ice Cream is also available for fund raising. Get more details at Bubbies.
Henry Louis Restaurant
2850 Paa St. 833-3728
Open from 11 a.m. to 2 a.m., Henry Louis (sports bar) is all about the great food — fall-off-the-bone ribs, teriyaki chicken, potato skins, sashimi, poke, oysters, crab and avocado sandwich, French dip, prime rib, pork chops, steaks, salads, and beer (actually a full bar).
The service is quick, the food is hot, and the prices reasonable. This place is always packed (a good sign), most of the customers are regulars (another good sign), the staff is super friendly, there is a Cheers-type, everyone-knows-your-name character, there is karaoke — all the necessary ingredients for an overall popular local hangout. Oh, and parking is free.
Cha Cha Cha
Hawaii Kai Shopping Center
Tucked into the corner of Hawaii Kai Shopping Center, past Safeway and Longs, is a secret best place to chill.
Outdoor seating is in the back of the restaurant overlooking the marina, and is surprisingly scenic and lovely, as well as intimate. And a perfect setting for a margarita, which goes nicely with the complimentary chips and salsa and really, anything from the menu.
Sizzling fajitas is a popular choice. You have the choice of chicken, steak, shrimp or the fresh fish of the day along with grilled peppers and onions, and corn or flour tortillas, rice and beans.
The chili relleno casserole is sure to satisfy with layers of poblano chiles, Jack, Cheddar and Feta cheeses and a light egg batter, topped with a spicy red chipotle sauce. With a variety of enchiladas, tacos, quesadillas, burritos, nachos, and specials, there is surely something to satisfy your cravings for authentic Mexican food.
Fresh ingredients, friendly service, great waterfront ambiance, and reasonable prices.
Yasou! Located at the front edge of the marina, next to the Kona Brewing Company, is arguably the most authentic Greek food on the island.
Appetizer menu items include a flaky spanakopita and tiropita, delicacies baked with cheese and Filo dough; fried eggplant, seasoned and served with pita bread; and must try Greek style fries, served with garlic
mayo. The hummus is also a no-brainer, can’t-go-wrong choice.
Entrees include a special Moussaka, traditional lamb shank or lamb chops, prepared authentically, as well as the skewered lamb souvlaki, served with a wonderful Greek salad.
Besides the outstanding menu, the Greek Marina allows (OK encourages) you to bring your own bottle of wine (no corkage fee).
And if you’re really looking for way to save, Happy Hour every day from 2 to 5 p.m. offers 25 percent off your bill.
Table seating is available inside or outside. But if you don’t mind an occasional visit from the ducks, al fresco dining is definitely the way to go here. Hint: Check online for coupon specials.
Much Aloha to Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties and Island Homes Collection, Who bring wonderful neighborhoods and some of our favorite dining options.
*NOTE: data deemed reliable but not guaranteed
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