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Hawaii restaurants

The native Hawaiian diet once revolved around a few root vegetables, fruit, wild boar, and fish. But several factors moved Hawaiian cuisine far beyond those humble beginnings: Laborers who came from China, Japan, Portugal, Korea, and the Philippines to work the sugar cane plantations brought a panoply of new flavors; the influx of hippies and professional athletes brought a new health consciousness; and luxury hotels and resorts introduced Continental tastes. Today, many restaurants in Hawaii reflect these cultural currents combined with native traditions—a phenomenon that in the early '90s became known as Hawaii regional cuisine, spearheaded by a band of a dozen now-famous chefs, including Beverly Gannon, George Mavrothalassitis, Peter Merriman, and Alan Wong. Its hallmark is a use of fresh, local ingredients to concoct haute or healthy renditions of traditional dishes such as grilled short ribs, poke (marinated raw fish), shredded pork, and lau lau (meat and fish wrapped in leaves and steamed). The original (greasier) versions are typically sold as $7 mixed plates at roadside lunch shacks. Outside Hawaii's upscale restaurants, island food tends to focus on red meat and can be salty (vegetarians and heart patients, take heed). But there is also plenty of fresh fish and fruit: Check out the numerous roadside farmers' markets, and if you see a guy selling coconuts by the side of the road, buy one and have him stick a straw in it for you. The sweet liquid inside is the distilled essence of Hawaii—and more memorable than any mai tai.

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The Pineapple Room by Alan Wong, Honolulu, Oahu, Hawaii

Affordable and very popular with the locals, the Pineapple Room is a great place to sample chef Alan Wong's accessible classics, such as crispy Asian slaw,...more

see the Oahu guide
Editors' Pick
Poke Stop, Waipahu, Oahu, Hawaii

Oahu-born chef Elmer Guzman is on a one-man mission to elevate poke—the local side dish of soy-marinated raw fish—to an art form. He blends the bold...more

see the Oahu guide
Editors' Pick
Rokkaku, Honolulu, Oahu, Hawaii

The minimalist black, tan, and white decor makes Rokkaku the perfect backdrop for the Louis Vuitton-, Gucci-, and Chanel-clad customers who frequent the...more

see the Oahu guide
Editors' Pick
Roy's Waikoloa Bar & Grill, Waikoloa, Big Island, Hawaii

In the wake of Nobu and Morimoto, fresh seafood punched up with bold Asian flavors and plated in ornamental Japanese style can sound a bit commonplace, but chef...more

see the Big Island guide
Editors' Pick
Saturday Farmers' Market at Kapiolani Community College, Honolulu, Oahu, Hawaii

This bustling Saturday-morning market (it starts at 7:30 and lasts until 11) sells an overwhelming array of locally grown produce and ready-to-eat foods. Come...more

see the Oahu guide
Editors' Pick
Side Street Inn, Honolulu, Oahu, Hawaii

More sports bar than restaurant, this humble spot has such terrific food that you might spot Alan Wong or Roy Yamaguchi hanging out here after-hours. You'll...more

see the Oahu guide
Editors' Pick
Spago, Wailea, Maui, Hawaii

Even if you're not staying at the Four Seasons, it's de rigueur to visit the hotel's Hawaiian version of Spago, decorated with bright wallpaper murals of pink...more

see the Maui guide
Editors' Pick
Tex's Drive-In, Honokaa, Big Island, Hawaii

It was a tiny shack that put the little town of Honokaa on the map with its irresistible malassadas (fried dough balls rolled in sugar). Now it's a factory and...more

see the Big Island guide
Editors' Pick
Two Ladies Kitchen, Hilo, Big Island, Hawaii

Hilo native Nora Uchida and her family apply themselves to making Japanese dessert pastries, and making them very well. Mochi (soft pounded-rice balls) and...more

see the Big Island guide
Editors' Pick
Waiola Store, Honolulu, Oahu, Hawaii

Shave ice—the local treat of monster-size snow cones drenched in fruit syrup—makes the perfect refresher after a day at the beach. These days,...more

see the Oahu guide
Editors' Pick
Results 41-50 of 50  | previous   1 2 3 4 5
Information may have changed since date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.

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