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Best place for PRIME RIB on Oahu?

Want to take family for dinner feast-Remember the ono prime rib at Queen Surf back in da days!!! Looking for the best recs. Mahalo!!!!

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  1. I remember 'back in the day' when people used to talk about the prime rib at various places, from the Maile room down to Sizzler. These days people seem focused on other foods, and I don't remember the last time anyone told me 'you gotta try the prime rib at _____" Any of the steakhouses here do a good job with prime rib. I think I would decide on other factors (view, overall reputation, level of service) and then see if they do prime rib. For example if you could get beachside seating at Dukes at Sunset then I would consider the prime rib there (supposedly pretty good.) Surprisingly the shorebird doesn't do prime rib.

    I don't think yelp is going to help on this one, their two highest ratings are Anykine Grill and Ray's Cafe, which are more 'good value for the price' kind of places. Number three was Blazin Steaks - fast food.

    2 Replies
    1. re: KaimukiMan

      I'm wwith KMan. Prime rib is not difficult to do well.

      1. re: KaimukiMan

        i have had the 'prime rib' at makitti in waikiki (hello kitty themed buffet by makino chaya) and it was just a sad and sorry piece of steak. the buffet is decent, but don't get this add on.

        today my dad got the 'good value for the price' prime rib with two eggs at new eagle cafe. this was a single cut with a scoop of rice and real grated horseradish. to my complete surprise, it was decent, very decent. like i mentioned earlier, i like bloody rare, but this mediumish was still very tender and flavorful. i would not hesitate to order this myself and it was under fifteen bucks.

        on a side note: i had the philly cheesesteak and it was the bomb, made with..prime rib! lots of real cheese, peppers, onions, and mushrooms. highly recommend!

      2. Haleiwa Joe's in Kaneohe has a great (and huge) prime rib, really delicious. The view is really great too. Although since I live fairly close I have usually carried out.

        1. Last mention of Prime Rib, that I can recall, was at Hy's, but that was long ago.


          2 Replies
          1. re: Bill Hunt

            Hy's has always done an excelent job with prime rib - although it's been some years since I was there.

            1. re: KaimukiMan

              Yes, the recs., that I mentioned, were from the past, but were glowing.

              As I am not normally a big fan of "Prime Rib," I never seek it out in Hawaii. We get so many poor examples at various events, that I am headed to other dishes.



          2. i have difficulty finding a place that has a slice that is still bloody rare. usually they are all medium to well done.

            manomin is right about haleiwa joe's portions, the plate is gigantinormous.

            1. The prime rib at the Willows was pretty good when we ate there recently. Like people say, not many go to Hawaii looking for prime rib. You can find it done well anywhere on the continental US.

              3 Replies
              1. re: Clinton


                Glad that you commented.

                As you state, I never even think of Prime Rib in Hawaii, but have picked up a few tips, from others.

                Besides it not being a dish, that I really appreciate (though HAVE had some good examples over time), it is not what I think of, when heading to the Islands.

                Even on the Mainland, it is way down my list of dishes.



                1. re: Clinton

                  Haven't been to Ruth Steak House, but people buzz in my office said they have wonderful primes... any review?

                  1. re: roro808

                    a ruth's chris? i didn't know they had prime rib.

                    i have not had pr at morton's; have any of you? i have eaten there several times and the food was good, but quite expensive and not as good as ruth's chris or hy's.

                    i also have not had pr at hy's.

                2. Queen Surf ?!?! Freakin' A you must be an old fart! :)

                  I am a big fan of Hy's, Morton's would be my back-up.

                  16 Replies
                  1. re: scottca075

                    I have not dined at the Morton's on O`ahu, but am likely not to. We have also not dined at most Morton's on the Mainland.

                    When we DO dine at one, we are guests, and have to. We have been to Morton's in New Orleans, Phoenix, Denver, San Francisco and Chicago (all as guests), and have been highly underwhelmed at each, though others were paying. I have usually been tapped to pick the wines, and while the lists are long, I shudder at what my host will be paying for those - about 600% markup, at most establishments. I typify them as "adult McDonalds," where the patrons want something familiar to them, with no forethought. On O`ahu, I cannot imagine that I would darken their door, unless someone hosts and insists that I attend.

                    Maybe it's just something that I am missing, like why someone would dine at a Hard Rock Cafe, but such is life.

                    I want to do a chef-driven dining experience, and if he/she does not do prime rib, that is OK too. If someone just has to have PR, then I would say that Las Vegas would be THE place, as almost every buffet has such - though not sure how good any would be.

                    Phoenix had a PR restaurant, the Beefeater, but it closed about 5 years ago. They specialized in that cut, and served it for about 40 years. It was OK, but not good enough to go back.


                    1. re: Bill Hunt

                      You know a lot of people from Hawaii can't wait to try Olive Garden when the get to the mainland. They've seen so many commercials, but we don't have one here. We know that Mortons is an expensive mainland chain, so it must be good right? And the little steak sandwiches they (used to?) give out at happy hour were tasty.

                      1. re: KaimukiMan

                        i love olive garden! best bang for your buck, like red lobster's endless shrimp.

                        every time i've eaten at morton's i've been disappointed. the food is good, but not that good. something is always a little off, and ruth's chris always does it a lot better. again, i have not had the prime rib at morton's.

                        1. re: indelibledotink

                          Interesting..... Morton's is disappointing, but you like Olive Garden & Red Lobster and think Ruth's Chris is better than Morton's. I guess everyone has their tastes. The food is so bad at Olive Garden and Red Lobster when I am forced to go with friends it is all I can do to sit on my hand's and not rend my clothes.

                          I've never had a bad steak, sides or service at a Morton's and I've been to a dozen or more. Is it my first choice? Not in any city I travel to, but like Bill we either go as guests or it is where my client has chosen to dine. I do find their steaks better than Ruth's Chris, the whole sizzling in butter thing just doesn't do it for me.

                          I am a huge fan of Morton's Happy Hour.

                          1. re: scottca075

                            the fact that olive garden and red lobster have all you can eat makes up for a lot.

                            i've lived in nyc and, while olive garden is no little italy, it's still ok to good. $7-10 gets you all the salad and breadsticks you can stuff in your piehole, which makes it a deal, especially when they have unlimited pasta and multiple pasta specials. i'm waiting for one to open on oahu, but apparently the franchisees must have a freestanding building and adjacent parking lot.

                            i love red lobster's cheddar bay biscuits. their all you can eat shrimp specials include five or more types of dishes. the last time i went, i had at least nine portions, and they ran out of the small shrimp and were using large shrimp. this is all for about $17.

                            now morton's is supposed to be fine dining, but i just feel their prices are so high and the overall quality just doesn't hit the mark. i'm sure that the cuts of meat they start with are wonderful, but by the time it has gotten to the table, something is missing. i had an orange souffle that was very good, but i have also had a creamed spinach that was watery.

                            ruth's chris uses really great meat, and i can taste it. rich and smooth, wonderful flavor. eh for the hot plates and butter, but the quality is always consistent.

                            1. re: indelibledotink

                              All you can eat of garbage is still garbage. The over cooked, over salted, over sauced pastas of OG are despicable. They can not even get a simple pomodoro right.

                              Quantity over quality is no way to eat. 9 helpings of frozen shrimp sounds like a punishment dreamed up in Guantanamo.

                              Both Ruth's Chris and Morton's use USDA prime, but Morton's doesn't drown the steak in butter.

                              1. re: scottca075

                                <<Both Ruth's Chris and Morton's use USDA prime, but Morton's doesn't drown the steak in butter.>>

                                Regarding those two restaurants, I do find THAT to be a plus, on the side of Morton's.


                              2. re: indelibledotink

                                Personally, I think that I have lodged more complaints against large portions, and A-Y-C-E servings, than small portions, at least over the last 30 years. Quantity does not equate to quality, at least for me.

                                I'd rather go with Chef Mavro's 15-course tasting menu, where the portions are tiny, but there ARE plenty of them (especially if one factors in maybe three amuse bouche offerings), than large (or unlimited portions) of but a very few dishes.

                                Just did the Chef's Tasting Menu at Vidalia (Washington, DC), and my biggest complaint was that each portion was too large. I would have preferred that they be cut by at least half, and then another added to the serving, but that is just me.


                              3. re: scottca075

                                Perhaps I should be proud to say that I've never been to OG or RL either, but I thought I heard that OG was coming to Oahu. True?

                                1. re: scottca075

                                  I have tried to recall every visit to a Morton's, and believe that all have been as a guest. I cannot recall booking any, for myself. Not one visit stands out as really good. Even the wines (which I am often tasked with choosing), while good, are so expensive, that I feel for my generous hosts.

                                  Once, back before the days of a franchise (Paul Fleming did well there), Ruth's was much better in New Orleans. However, and always as a guest, we have not been impressed with any visit in the last 20 years. OK, but not much more than that.

                                  All of that said, I do have to admit that I am not a real "steakhouse guy," BUT have had some exceptional experiences, but just not with "chain steakhouses."

                                  Now, even in Hawai`i, I have had some wonderful beef. A filet at Dondero's (Grand Hyatt, Kaua`i) was about #4 on my "all-time great list," for beef tenderloin. I love my beef (even in Hawai`i), but just usually pass on the "steakhouse aura." Just me.

                                  As for Olive Garden, I have only been twice (as a guest each time), and was underwhelmed. I cannot recall the last time that I dined at any Red Lobster. Possibly wrongfully so, I tend to shun such restaurants, and look for something more "chef-driven."

                                  We have never done a "Morton's Happy Hour," so cannot comment.

                                  As for the platter at 2000F, with sizzling butter, I am with you. My rare steak is at least medium, before I can even get close to it. A friend, who is a Ruth's fan, always orders a cold plate, to cut her husband's steak onto, and they order it at least one full level more rare, than what they want to end up with. Not sure what that draw is all about, but it is not something that I lean towards.


                              4. re: KaimukiMan

                                Good points.

                                Being FROM the Mainland, I find it tough to put myself in the mind frame of a local, but I do see your point.

                                Heck, I have fallen for TV commercials, and have almost always been horribly disappointed. Cannot think of even one exception, but there is bound to be just one?

                                When in Hawai`i, like New Orleans, I do not want what I can get in Phoenix (Roy's would be an exception, though only slightly), Chicago, NYC, San Francisco or Washington, DC. I do not want what I have available to me, every other day of the week. Though I do tend to dine at "old favorites," when in Hawai`i, it is never for dishes that are well-represented on the Mainland.

                                As for the PR, I think that many of my observations, or lack thereof, stem from that not being a dish that I really seek out, and especially in Hawai`i. OTOH, several have offered the OP some suggestions, and I would assume that they are very good ones.


                              1. re: scottca075


                                There are a few of us out there who stayed for weeks at the Kahala Hilton in the '80's and ate every night at some of the best places on the Island.
                                I remember a New Year's Eve years ago at Queen Surf...great Prime Rib.
                                Tahitian Lanai, Top of the I, Michel's...all great food with local flair. Yeah, maybe I'm one of the old ones...but the memories are still there :).

                                1. re: latindancer

                                  Ah, the Kahala Hilton. We dined at the Maile Room on the last night that they were in existence, and cried with the servers, when they closed for the very last time. How I miss that restaurant.

                                  Now, Queen Surf was not on my list, so I probably missed something good there. I do still hear folk offering up great memories.

                                  We did Top of the I, not THAT long ago, and were horribly disappointed. I remembered it from "way back when," maybe 1984?


                                  1. re: Bill Hunt

                                    Hi Bill Hunt.

                                    Please excuse the tardiness of my response. I just noticed your post.
                                    Yes, we began going to Champeaux's at The Top of the I, in 1977. Over the many weeks we stayed in Honolulu, at The Kahala Hilton, we'd dine there at least 3 times a week. We'd always order their amazing escargot, delicious scampi, rack of lamb or mahi mahi and Crepes Suzette. Of course the wine list was extensive and the service, impeccable. The view, what can I say? We stopped going, "way back when" in the early '80's, after our first child was born. Taking a child into that beautiful French restaurant would have been highly inappropriate. We've never been back, as you and others have mentioned the obvious decline, and it's best we haven't because I'd rather remember it as one of the highlights of our vacations.
                                    Then, of course as you've mentioned, the Maile Room. Oh....the memories, huh? The employees were like family. Those many months leading up to the closure, and the long list of employees being displaced, was terribly painful.

                                    1. re: latindancer

                                      I think that I first dined at the Top of the I, though under a slightly different name, in about 1982. Then, it was great.

                                      Some years ago, we dined there again, though much had changed over the decades, but were disappointed. Nothing like before, but life goes on. Thomas Wolfe had a point - "you can never go home again."

                                      I have posted on many boards, experiences that were not like "before," but some, where thing HAD changed, and the experience was better. It can go both ways.

                                      One of the joys of my culinary life, was having dined at the Maile Room, and especially on their last night. The staff WAS highly committed to that restaurant, and had poured out their hearts and souls. I am so fortunate to have dined there over the years.

                                      I had hoped for much more, at the "top of the I," but just could not warm to it. That was about 8 years ago, so much could have changed. As I have maintained, things can change for the better, or for the worst, but things do change.