Ethiopian-food fans rejoiced when they received an email from Meron Girma Tsige announcing that Addis Ababa Hawaii resurfaces at Lemongrass Cafe in Chinatown this month. Last night was the pop-up’s downtown debut. You can reserve a table for March 17 and 24, at 6pm or 7:30pm. On those dates, you can also drop in for lunch without reservations at noon. After that Addis Ababa Hawaii … Continue reading The return of the Ethiopian pop-up
I started this blog with the happy discovery of a good pain au chocolat—something that did not exist in Honolulu before Fendu Boulangerie opened. On Thursday another non-indigenous craving was sated—at a pop-up Ethiopian restaurant. Now, every Thursday, J2 Asian Fusion, the offshoot of Praseuth Luangkhot’s JJ Bistro in Kaimuki, hosts Addis Ababa Hawaii’s Ethiopian Thursdays. Meron and James Spencer launched the event just three weeks ago—and 82 people showed up. On the event’s second night, 75 came for dinner, and this week the place was packed as well. A lot of the diners are some of Honolulu’s brightest academic stars—James is a political science professor at the University of Hawai‘i, so you can imagine what his email invitation list is like. (That’s how I found out about the dinner, from my American Studies superstar prof friend.) Meron is from Addis Ababa and she’s earned a name among friends for her dinner parties. The next step was taking it public. Continue reading “CLOSED // At long last injera: Ethiopian food comes to HNL”
NOTE 9/4/09: Due to popular demand, Julie & Julia dinner has been extended through September, Tuesday-Saturday. Check the Chef Mavro blog for updates (and see how George Mavrothalassitis makes beouf bourgignon. Thing of beauty).
Yeah, recessions suck. But they also spur all kinds of good (and delicious) things. Like last winter’s Souper Tuesdays at Town, Hiroshi’s insanely cheap $35 Locally Grown Dinner, and now Chef Mavro‘s Julie & Julia-inspired three-course dinner. Continue reading “Holy Tarte Tatin! Chef Mavro’s ‘Julie & Julia’ special starts Aug. 7”
Yes, Honolulu Academy of Arts’ Pavilion Cafe chef Mike Nevin is known for his garden fresh Med-Asian contemporary cafe dishes like mahi soba salad and greens-laden piadina (and his 80s Ward Centre spot Il Fresco was an HNL restaurant pioneer), but as Academy staffers recently found out, he also makes insanely delicious sloppy joes. Full of tomato, green pepper and celery, they’re as nostalgic as a … Continue reading Ode to the Sloppy Joe
Hiroshi Fukui, the genius behind Hiroshi Eurasion Tapas, does three “contemporary kaiseki” dinners a year. And they’re always sellouts. Once you try one, you’ll know why half the crowd is there every single time. Hiroshi creates nine completely new dishes. Master sommelier Chuck Furuya chooses wines to go with each one. If you’ve been feeling like life is kinda blah lately, book a table at this Thursday’s contemporary kaiseki. Everything will seem better, at least for a couple hours. The dinner starts off with beef and foie gras “shabu shabu” style and includes gomadare gelee, yuzu kanten, Tokyo negi, scallions and hot konbu cha. I can’t wait to see what the quotation marks mean. There’s also “chowder,” a “sandwich” and a “parfait.” Hiroshi is the best at culinary puns. Check the full menu. Continue reading “It’s Hiroshi time”
When I moved back to Hawai‘i six years ago after being away for 17, I brought with me a suitcasefull of cravings. For two years they lay dormant as I luxuriated in the poke explosion and plate lunches and nostalgic Liliha Bakery orange freezes. The sanctification of local produce by George Mavrothalassitis, Alan Wong, Ed Kenney, Hiroshi Fukui et al mixed with our island ocean bounty had me all lucky-I-eat-Hawai‘i. I discovered pa‘i ‘ai and swore off supermarket bag poi. But my tongue has TDD and in time those cravings awakened. I wanted what I couldn’t have. I complained that I couldn’t find skirt steak in the markets (Whole Foods solved that). I complained that I couldn’t buy fresh cavatelli. I told myself “You’re in the middle of the Pacific, relish what you CAN get.” “Shut up, I want a pain au chocolat!” And every time I found one somewhere in town (like Panya), I tried it. And every time I was bitterly disappointed. Until today. Continue reading “Happiness is a warm pain au chocolat”