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May 31, 2008 09:35 PM

Dining Recommendations in Kaimuki (Honolulu)

We just moved to Hawaii Kai and find the dining here to be dull; we've had some luck in Kaimuki, particularly at "Town" which we loved. Can anyone recommend other dining options between Hawaii Kai-Kaimuki that aren't chains? BTW - we'd love to see all kinds of suggestions, from diner to fine dining. THANKS!!

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  1. Lets see, between Kaimuki and Hawaii Kai:
    - Hale Vietnam
    - Hung Won
    - Kim Chee II (meat jun = yum)
    - Cafe Laufer
    - Maguro-ya
    - Cupcake Couture
    - Big City Diner

    1. 3660 on the Rise!!!
      12th Avenue Grill
      Tamura's for their poke bar & wine
      Cafe Laufer

      I know Roy's is a chain, but I think the original Hawaii Kai one is one of the best

      1. Kahala is surprisingly bereft of good restaurants, olive tree and green door being the notable exceptions. Of course Plumeria Cafe and Hoku's both at the Kahala Hotel are very good also.

        In Hawaii Kai, Blue Water Grill, Verbano Italian, The Shack Burgers (local chain) are all pretty good. I have not been as impressed by Kona Brewing Co., but some people swear by it.

        in addition to those listed by Kalihi Snob and torta basilica the following are good in Kaimuki:

        Duk Kee - Chinese, more casual, local atmosphere

        Happy Days - Chinese, more upscale - great dim sum from early morning till early afternoon

        Verbano - Italian. the generally do a really good job on fish there as well.

        Cafe Miro - Fusion/Continental... not as good a reputation as it used to have. Pricey

        Ninniku-ya (garlic house) steak and seafood with a slight japanese influence, pricey

        Green Papaya - Vietnamese with a selection of vegetarian dishes

        Cafe Saigon - pho, bun (noodle) bowls

        W&M Burgers (lunch only, closed monday) no place to sit and eat, very limited menu try the hank's special burger.

        I have to admit, I disagree with Kalihi on one place only... Kim Chee II. Used to be very good, but the last two times I was there I was seriously disappointed.

        Also Don't Rule out Kapahulu (Pyramids, Rainbow Drive In, Irifune, waiola store/shave ice) or Moiliili (Spices, Greek Corner, Maharani).

        Looking forward to hearing more from you folks.

        1. These pretty much cover it for the area, lots of local favorites listed. Just a couple of additions:

          BC Burrito in Kaimuki
          Lam's Garden in Kahala
          Jack's for breakfast in Aina Haina

          1 Reply
          1. re: curiousgeo

            Just want to put in another plug for BC Burrito in Kaimuki....
            If you want something fast, cheap, and really filling, the potato burrito is really delicious. They fry the potatoes (but it's not quite like french fries; more like homestyle potatoes) and aside from the usual burrito fillings of salsa (and optional guac/beans/rice), they squirt on a couple lines of RANCH DRESSING.
            As gross as this sounds.... it's a really tasty, guilty pleasure.

          2. I know that you asked for places to eat.... but here's a recommendation for an egg shop in Kaimuki. Check out Ka Lei on Waialae; the eggs are super fresh and it's way cheaper than buying eggs from the supermarket.
            Also, on certain days during the week, they sell a local favorite called 'KC Waffle Dogs.' (Basically a hot dog sandwiched between a waffle; hot dog or portuguese sausage option.)