Dough boy

Alejandro Briceno and his wood-burning oven

This tweet from @kiawe_fire says it all: “Dough is not right today ,,, so I’m not serving pizza!!! Sorry ill b back 2morrow.” That’s the twalias of Alejandro Briceño, former Nobu Waikiki pastry chef turned pizzaiolo. Instead of deconstructing shave ice and performing chocolate alchemy for one of the world’s most prestigious celeb-chef chains (Briceño’s Nobu desserts were stellar), he’s now baking pies—the Neapolitan kind. And that kind is all about the dough, which he happens to make from Caputo flour—”la farina di Napoli”—imported from Italy, and known internationally as the flour to use to make pizza.

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Holy Tarte Tatin! Chef Mavro’s ‘Julie & Julia’ special starts Aug. 7

Julie & Julia beouf bourgignon

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”

Meet Vikram Garg

Vikram Garg prepares to toast a spice.It’s not often that a new cooking talent comes to town (aside from the chefs at the battery of Japanese spots constantly opening), and boy have we received a big one. Last month the Halekulani had a press event in the kitchen of La Mer—a meet-n-taste with the hotel’s new executive chef Vikram Garg.

I thought: Didn’t I get a press release back in October announcing his appointment? During that time chef Garg has been getting settled, finding his sources, learning about the Hawai‘i culinary vernacular. And this little coming out party had everyone asking: When will new Garg menus be unveiled? Continue reading “Meet Vikram Garg”

Town: So pig-headed!

Pig head at the Town barFrom day one, Town‘s Ed Kenney and David Caldiero have been talking of locavorism, house-curing meats, house-made pasta, and other seductive culinary promises. From the first lunch they prepared for me in spring 2005 (before they served their first customer!) to dinner last night, this pono pair has delivered. And not just to so-called foodies, but to the community, as unflagging participants in fundraisers, as the commercial partner of MA‘O Farms and as an affordable spot for the people (check $12 Souper Tuesdays—organic greens and washtub-size bowl of house-made soup).

Four years on every time I go to the restaurant there’s something new and intriguing to try on the daily-changing, local-farmer-supporting menu. Last night it was pig head. Continue reading “Town: So pig-headed!”