Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Hawaii >
Apr 9, 2012 01:10 AM

2012 Hale Aina awards from Honolulu Magazine

this basically confirms what you guys have been saying!

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. thanks for posting indelible. i think a few chow hounds had coronaries when they saw the gold medal for desserts, and i can't imagine how kim chee 2 got on the list for best korean - even as bronze, but other than that there weren't many surprises.

    4 Replies
    1. re: KaimukiMan

      i actually really like the cheesecake @ cheesecake factory, but don't like their regular food.

      i was surprised @ sorabol getting #1 korean. i do like it there quite a bit, but there are some that are better (shillawon, han yang, choi's garden). sorabol being 24/7 might give it an edge, though.

      1. re: indelibledotink

        I was more surprised by Million getting #2. That restaurant was just horrible. The Banchan sucked, the main food was just OK, and it was overpriced. Better than Million was Young's Kal Bi and Y'Kele, a Korean plate lunch place at the Waikele Shopping Center.

        1. re: Hoc

          I think Million is going on people's memories from several years back.

          1. re: KaimukiMan

            That may be true. I kept returning to Ryan's Park Place repeatedly, hoping it was a shadow of what it had been in 1984, but I finally gave up on it a few years ago.

    2. Interesting, and mahalo for posting the link.

      It appears that Roy's has changed, since we last dined there (3 times, but in the past). Compared to some of Roy's restaurants on the Mainland (yes, I know that they are different corporations), that location did not impress us, at any level, but again, things have obviously changed. [Hope that I am allowed to say that.]

      Many of the others, well I would tend to agree, but then, many of us have our "sacred cows."

      There are some new ones, at least to me, plus some, on my list, that we have just not been able to fit in, so we now have MORE to shoot for.



      1. One important thing to remember is that the list is compiled from the readers of Honolulu magazine, so you are getting a snapshot of where upper-medium to upper income people in Hawaii like to eat.

        14 Replies
        1. re: KaimukiMan

          I will be interested in seeing what the next round of winners will be, so many new places have opened. With social media the voters are also encouraged by restaurants to vote so it is no longer just readers of the magazine, it used to be.

          1. re: manomin

            a brave new world, tasty remains to be seen.

            1. re: KaimukiMan

              K-Man you and I both remember the days when only subscribers got the ballot in the magazine and it had to be mailed in. Now you just click on the link to vote. Last year so many had links and tweets/FB posts for people to vote for them. There is a great amount of magazine articles this month about new places which is great for Hawaii. In Travel & Leisure and Sunset. How's the fries quest going?Have you seen the "happy face" fries at Pepper's in Kailua? They're little fried puffs of potato in the form of a happy face, the eyes, nose and mouth are cutouts so it looks so cute! I've only had them once.

              1. re: manomin

                Though a survey of subscribers is limited, opening it up to all, no matter if they have ever dined at the restaurants, really muddies the waters.

                It is like touting the results of a poll on how a particular politician is doing, when 70% of those polled are from that politician's party. Though I am anything BUT a pollster, I did take two semesters of Statistics in college, and understand what a sample pool can do, if it is not balanced.

                Still, other than a few ?'s, I did not find major faults with the results. My Roy's out East, were too long ago to count, so things might well have improved greatly. Think that the Hawai`i Kai location is the one most often mentioned?


            2. re: manomin

              You make a great point. Once, restaurant employees had to "stuff" the ballot box,and now, with but a tweet,or two, many thousands will flock to the Web site.

              Some years ago, a similar magazine/newspaper survey, had amazing results. One pizza restaurant (several locations, and really pretty good) won nearly everything, from "Most Romantic," (yeah, a quickie pizza joint, that is mainly a bar for take-out, with but a few sparse tables), "Best Italian," "Best French," "Best Fine-Dining," and the list went on. IIRC, they were # 3 for "Best Mexican Food," and do not have one Mexican dish - not even a Mexican pizza. I know that many CH's questioned that newspaper (in that case), and the particular restaurant was down the list, the next year, and in only really applicable

              Though I am not active in most "social media," I get my share of e-mails, telling me about "survey A," but when I vote, it is with my mind, and my palate, and not out of any loyalty. I am sure that a few of those providers might rue the day that they gave me details to vote - I know that the Intercontinental Hotel certainly does.


              1. re: Bill Hunt

                This thread speaks to me about the value of Chowhound vs becomes pretty clear when people post sincere and detailed reviews and comments that you can place some faith in their reporting. You may not agree on matters of taste or style, but getting the first-hand experience of people willing to take the time to post is very valuable...not so much when they can just click a star rating or stuff a ballot box. Mahalo to all the posters on this board!

                1. re: macaraca

                  I tend to agree with you.

                  Other than curiosity, I seldom make choices, based on any polls, and especially ones,t hat feature input form folk, who might, or might not, have a vested interest in the restaurant.

                  Over the years, I have found CH to be better, than most other restaurant sites. Perfect? No, but with but a bit of reading, one should be able to get a realistic picture of most restaurants.


                  1. re: Bill Hunt

                    So for all of you who want to is the ballot. Maui just announced their Ai'pono awards this past Sunday. I have lots of ideas of best new restaurant on Oahu.

                    1. re: manomin

                      Thank you for that. This haole, Mainlander, just voted.



                      1. re: Bill Hunt

                        That's great! The more the merrier! You gotta try Whole Ox, Heeia Pier and Camille's on Wheels & Prima next time you are on Oahu. Prima just did a 17 course meal on Monday night for the corporate people of Whole Foods who came for the Kailua store opening. Also Cactus is new but I've not been yet, lunch only until May also in Kailua.

                        1. re: manomin

                          I'll wait to vote until I get back from my trip to Oahu and Kauai this August. I'm looking forward to trying He'eia Pier, but I hope it won't be too crowded by that time after that TV episode airs...

                2. re: KaimukiMan

                  E Kaimuki, Aloha 'oe:

                  You mean "snapshot of upper-medium to upper income people in *Hono*...", hiki no? That and a few rich poe from Kailua.