In the November / December 2014 food issue of HAWAII magazine you will find “75 Places to Eat Like a Local”, our now annual guide to the places in Hawaii where locals like us eat when we are starved . This year’s “75 Places to Eat Like a Local: Mixed Plate Edition” deals with the islands’ well-known multicultural cuisine. For example, where do we go when we look for the best Korean Kalbi and Kimchee pancakes. The restaurants we go to have the best of Vietnamese food. And if we crave more than one ethnic cuisine, the places eat with melting pot menus from different Hawaiian cultures.
Over the past few months we’ve released some of the categories and restaurants from this year’s guide, “75 Places to Eat Like a Local: Mixed Plate Edition” here on HawaiiMagazine.com. In previous posts we shared our Hawaiian, Japanese, Asian Hot Pot, Poke, Vietnamese, and Korean categories. Below is the final category we split: the five restaurants that make up our MELTING POT category.
75 Places To Eat Like A Local: Mixed Plate Edition
Category 13 of 15
Because sometimes – okay, often – the food of one culture is not enough for us.
Grondin French Latin American cuisine
The name of this hip, brick-walled restaurant in the heart of downtown Honolulu’s Chinatown district, as well as the nationally recognized Fatty ‘Cue pedigree, keep the curious popping its door. Chef Andre Pressler’s appealing menu, rich in meat, seafood, and local vegetables, ensures that you get another double shot of Latin (the Adobo steak with a spicy tomatillo puree kills us) and French (a generous lunch -Cassoulet with local pork thighs and) home-made bacon cuisine.
62 No. Hotel St., Oahu • (808) 566-6768 • grondinhi.com
Newly interpreted Filipino, Korean, Japanese, Hawaiian and Chinese dishes stand side by side on the menu and are often combined in a clever and amusing way at Migrant. The source of it all is the infinitely creative, multicultural mind of Chef Sheldon Simeon, who came up with dishes like bottom of the plate lunch (just the way it sounds) and Korean chicken wings with Filipino kare kare stew made by young children . Time memories.
Located at the Wailea Beach Marriott, 3700 Waialea Alanui Drive, Maui • (808) 875-9394 • migrantmaui.com
Hawaiian style cafe
We present your classroom for your crash course in Multicultural Local Food 101. Which Char Siu and Lup Cheong plates do you enjoy? Chinese. The Lechón Kawali? Filipino. Pulehu ribs? Hawaiian. Calbi? Korean. Smoked Meat Omelette? Who cares. Just eat it. Pop quiz on Tuesday, kids.
681 Mānono St., (808) 969-9265; 65-1290 Kawaihae Road, (808) 885-4295; both Hawaii Island
Mission Social Hall & Cafe
Chef Mark “Gooch” Noguchi’s menu at his new lunchtime cafe at the Hawaiian Mission Houses Museum is intrigued by creating modern Hawaiian cuisine by exploring its roots. It has two main influences. First, dishes inspired by the daily diet of 19th century Hawaiian missionaries. Second, its upscale signature picks up on multicultural comfort dishes whose ingredients are sourced as locally as possible. A Molokai Venison Ramen Salad? An Oahu smoked meat and pai-ai (pounded taro) salad? This is Gooch who is just getting started.
553 S. King St., Oahu (808) 447-3910
Moon & Turtle Restaurant (formerly Full Moon Cafe)
The menu changes daily in this extraordinary Hilo restaurant. What matters is what fresh meat, seafood and products from the brothers Mark and Tedd Pomaski can procure from the region and which ethnic Hawaiian cuisines they want to explore on that day. What customers can expect every time they visit is an exceptionally imaginative amalgam of multicultural cuisine – from Vietnamese, Japanese and Chinese to Spanish, German, Korean and more.
51 Kalakaua St., Island of Hawaii • (808) 961-0599