HOME > Chowhound > Hawaii >
Jul 9, 2013 11:38 AM

Birthday Dinner in Honolulu

In 60 days I will be arriving in Honolulu with my wife and another couple. We will be on the island for a week all celebrating our 25th Anniversaries. The day we arrive will also be my birthday, so my wife wants to go out for a nice dinner, wherever "I" want!!! We are staying near the Kualoa Ranch, but figured my best bet is probably to drive back to Honolulu. We have narrowed our Anniversary dinner down to a few places, including Pah-Ke's in Kaneohe, Haleiwa Joe's & Ruth's Chris. For my b-day I need some input, I really enjoy a great steak, but also love fresh seafood, so,, I am looking for somewhere to have both. My wife says "Wherever & however much", I'm thinking if we can stay around the $200 per couple range with wine would be good. I have narrowed it down to my top 6, however if I have missed something really special let me know Here they are, in no particular order.
Chart House
d.k. Steak House
3660 on the rise
Hy's Steak House
Hau Tree Lanai

Mahalo ~ K

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. So I gather you have ruled out the higher end places: Alan Wong's, Mavro, LaMer, Roys, Nobu's? Just want to be clear.

    From your list I would eliminate Chart House. Once I would have included it as well, but my last couple of visits there were disappointing.

    15 Replies
    1. re: KaimukiMan

      I agree on the elimination of Chart House. Haleiwa Joe's is convenient for your location, it is the "only game" in town on our side. My husband walks the dog by there most nights and the place is packed. I would vote for d.k.'s it's a great place for both steak and seafood. How about Tiki's? They have an amazing menu and a great view. I have not been to Signature but I like his philosophy to bring a great steakhouse experience without the extremely high ticket. I always vote for Roy's but everyone knows that by now. I had the most killer scallop dish as well as an amazing prawn dish last Saturday.

      1. re: manomin

        haleiwa joe's is more of a "local, family-type special occasion" place
        a kid's 12th birthday dinner with the immediate family type of deal

        if you are staying near kualoa ranch, how's about the places at turtle bay resort?

        1. re: manomin

          signature is new, and there are not many reports yet
          new concept for the owner, he owns yummy's and liliha bakery, so this is a big step up

          i hope it works out, but i would hesitate recommending a big birthday or anniversary dinner there

          1. re: macsak

            signature was good, but don't get the table right by the piano, too loud. the staff was very nice and helpful. my piece of fish was smaller than I would have liked, but of good quality, as were the steaks. I still like hy's better, though.

          2. re: manomin

            tiki's is a great location and concept, but once again, for a big celebration, i find it loud and a little too kitschy in decor

          3. re: KaimukiMan

            I have ruled out a couple of them, but I am not familiar with a couple of the others. I will research them as well.. Sounds like I can scratch Chart House though. I'll get back to you!!

            1. re: KaimukiMan

              I think I have narrowed it down to either Hy's or d.k. They both have fantastic menus & expansive wine lists. The dry aged beef at both places looks exceptional, and both have some sort of steak/seafood combos. Hy's does seem to have a larger selection of apps though. It may just come down to location & how I feel on the day we arrive!! Looking both up on TripAdvisor d.k.'s ranks # 15 in Honolulu & Hy's ranks # 56, although there were more reviews for Hy's than for d.k. It looks like d.k. may have the beautiful tropical views that us mainlanders are looking for, as opposed to the Steak House atmosphere that, like Ruth's Chris, we can find in any city. Back to you

              1. re: KowboyK

                yeah, you can find leather booths and tableside service (think caesar's salad, bananas foster, strawberries jubilee, carved rack of lamb) anywhere in the US
                but they won't have the glassed in kiawe (similar to mesquite) raging grill
                and audy kimura on the guitar

                1. re: macsak

                  you just have to be sure to be seated in the front - or maybe they closed up the back section. It was clearly set up to suck money out of the pockets of asian visitors. But I love the front section of Hy's. Still I don't know if I were flying to Hawaii if I would be at a Canadian Steak House chain for one of my important meals.

                    1. re: indelibledotink

                      oh, ok, they WERE part of a chain.

                      no wonder the interior looks a little british.

                    2. re: KaimukiMan

                      wow, kman, you are right about a canadian chain

                      re: asian visitors
                      there are many restaurants in waikiki that serve surf and turf to the asian visitors
                      it is usually included in a package with their lodgings/tours
                      they usually are turned very fast, which is actually preferable to many asian visitors
                      it pays the rent at a lot of restaurants

                      1. re: KaimukiMan

                        I had no clue,,,,I was told that 53 by the Sea was owned by a Japanese Corp, so is d.k. locally owned??

                        1. re: KowboyK

                          yup owned by dk kodama
                          looks like he made his longtime GM ivy a partner
                          he also owns sansei sushi, and owns or has an interest in vino and hiroshi's


                        2. re: KaimukiMan

                          One of the reasons we are going to Hawaii instead of somewhere else( possibly cheaper) is we wanted to spend our hard earned US dollars in US!! So Canadian chains & Japanese corporations were not what we were thinking. Thanks for the inside info!! Maybe we should just go to Bobo's BBQ

                  1. Aloha, KK:

                    I suggest you consider Sasebune and defer the steak.


                      1. i'll reply more later, but PLEASE take off ruth's chris
                        you can go there in most any city in the US
                        Hy's and dk's are much better choices for steak in HI

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: macsak

                          I really like ruth's chris, but macsak is right, you can find them in other cities.

                          I have not eaten at dk's or hau tree lanai.

                          most of my really enjoyable meals were not at fine dining restaurants.

                          but from your birthday list... Hy's.

                          1. re: indelibledotink

                            Hy's is great
                            old school steakhouse, formal service, tableside presentations, leather booths
                            glassed in cooking station with RAGING kiawe wood grill

                            dk's is good too, but in a more modern setting (well a hotel restaurant setting)
                            dry aged steak
                            some locavore type preparations
                            but not as much of a "special occasion" type meal

                        2. Aloha..
                          House without a Key for drinks, apps and Hawaiian music ..oceanfront for starters..
                          Walk across the street to Roys Waikiki.
                          This is NOT your typical Roys...sublime and the GM, Diva, is da best host.
                          Food is off the chain.
                          Happy 25th..
                          Aloha and Mahalo

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: Beach Chick

                            this is a great suggestion
                            HWAK at sunset is awesome

                            1. re: Beach Chick

                              Thanks BC, I really think I'm leaning towards d.k. or Hy's at this point. Roy's does look amazing though!! Who knows, I may change my mind a dozen times between now & then!! Thanks again for all the input, I really can't wait to get there,,,, 59 days!! (not that I'm counting or anything)