Sunday, November 28, 2010
Wednesday, November 24, 2010
Gogi taco truck from the ordering side:
Top: spicy pork taco ($2)
Bottom: BBQ chicken taco ($2)
Left: tofu taco ($2)
Wednesday, November 17, 2010
The highlight of Amuse is the wine tasting machines. You put a dollar amount on a stored value card (kinda like Dave & Busters), stick your card into any of the 4 wine tasting machines, and taste away! Each wine shows a price above, the cost of a 1 oz. taste. They ranged from $1 to almost $20 a taste (I think that was the Opus One). It was a little hard to tell what some of the wines are, since you can only see the front of the label, and there isn't any other signage (except for the Robert Parker 95+ pt wines) to identify what you are drinking, what type of grape it is, or where it is from.
Hopefully you like red wines, because only about 10 of the ~70 or 80 wines available are white.
Highlights of the tasting machines last night were:
- Warwick Pinotage (South Africa). Not sure how much this is selling for at Amuse, but I priced it online for around $17 a bottle. Pinotage is a red grape specific to South Africa; it's a medium bodied red, pretty fruity on the palate
- A Brunello (Italy--I have to check what the name was). According to the book on wines I read, Brunello is both a region in Italy and a grape varietal, somewhat related to sangiovese and nebbiolo. This was a splurge ($6 a taste) so I don't think I could afford a bottle, but it was impressive. Silky smooth with a bite from the tannins but not acidic at all. This was in the special Robert Parker 95-99 pt section, it scored 95 pts from him.
A tip: we went on a Saturday, so had to pay full value for our wine tasting machine card. BUT if you go btw 5 - 8 pm on Mondays and Wednesdays, you can get $50 value for just $30!
Amuse wine bar
Honolulu Design Ctr
1250 Kapiolani Blvd, 2f
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
I wasn't blown away by any of the food (except the honey toast!) but I thought maybe it was just me, and I should get some second opinions. I checked out the Yelp reviews, and even though it has 3 1/2 stars, no one really raves about it or swears by this place. There's an interesting quote from one Yelper, saying "Shokudo was one of those cool places where all the cool kids went to eat. Now, and I'm sure thanks to Yelp, it's just some place that sells you toast that isn't toasted." hee hee
We ordered a bunch of appetizers to share, since we were saving room for dessert.
Cucumber ume salad with bonito - this was tasty
Homemade tofu - very different from Chinese homemade tofu. Curious how they make it. Much creamier, although I got a slightly powdery and roasted flavor as well. Comes with a soy sauce, green onions, chopped up nori, and kosher salt (the big crystals) to sprinkle on
Spicy scallop roll - this was not very good. It was falling apart, not much rice, and had this weird white nori - type wrapping
Yukari french fries - couldn't really taste the yukari sprinkled on, not very hot
...and then dessert...the famous honey toast. 2 giant slices of white Japanese toast, hollowed out. The innards are cut into cubes, fried in butter, drizzled in honey, then stuffed back into the crusts, and topped with two scoops of ice cream :)
1585 Kapiolani Blvd
Saturday, November 13, 2010
1) Da Kitchen
Ok, so this place isn't that new in Honolulu (it's originally from Maui) but new to me. I'd been hearing about it all over, but hadn't made it over to Isenberg to check it out. It's right next to Maple Garden, and they have a decent size parking lot in the back.
We had the fried musubi (omg, why didn't anyone else think of this before? I can't believe it's not on every menu in Hawaii - it epitomizes island food - spam, rice, and deep fried goodness). $4.50
And the special of the day: shoyu ginger opakapaka plate lunch (I was expecting it to be grilled, but it came fried). $15.50
2) Fort Street Cafe
After reading on Nonstop Honolulu about their extensive search for the best garlic chicken on the island, I had to go try their #1 pick, Fort St. Cafe. I had assumed it would be in small, mochiko chicken type of pieces, so I was surprised to see these big pieces of chicken. They had each been pounded flat, fried, and then a clear, sweet-garlicky sauce was poured on top.
Shirokiya makes me wish I worked near Ala Moana shopping center. I would eat here every day. Heck, if I ever open my own company, I will put our office near Ala Moana just so I can eat here every day.
Bento (which I picked because of the flavored musubi: one had salmon flakes and the other had this sweet - salty konbu type of thing, but I'm not exactly sure what it is. It also came with a piece of fried chicken, nishime, and pickles.Shirokiya spam musubi (with egg and furikake)