A Kona institution founded in 1957, this family-run restaurant offers abundant, house-style Japanese cuisine that is tasty and plentiful. Teshima’s hearty pork sukiyaki, served in a kettle, is as charming as it is delicious from the plantation days. And when we dream of Japanese home cooking, we think of Teshima’s combination of oyako donburi and sashimi.
79-7251 Mamalahoa Highway, Island of Hawaii • (808) 322-9140 • teshimarestaurant.com
Missing Miyo’s original location overlooking Hilo’s Waiakea fish pond, we nibble on our favorite two-way teishoku (set meals) – the same chicken and pork tonkatsu, tempura and sashimi – while ducks glided on the water at sunset. But a larger kitchen at Miyo’s new location also allows for a larger menu, the old favorites and additional noodle, donburi and hot pot selections.
564 Hinano St. Hawaii Island • (808) 935-2273 • miyosrestaurant.com
A menu of solid, simple Japanese favorites has made Kiibo a long-time favorite of Līhu’e residents. We’ll forego bells and whistles like modern decor and good lighting – both lacking kiibo – for a warm kettle of vegetarian-wrapped pork or chicken sukiyaki, which is served every evening with a side dish of ahi sashimi.
2991 Umi St., Kauai • (808) 245-2650
Yataimura Food Court
The attraction of this collection of Japanese food stalls to borrow the title of a Devo classic lies in the freedom of choice. Crunchy, warm tonkatsu and shrimp tempura. Curry bowls. Okonomiyaki. Takoyaki. Yakisoba. Mochi. Bento eats lunch. Pasta bowls. Japanese beers. With everything offered by so many vendors, your freedom of choice is only limited by the size of your appetite.
In Shirokiya at the Ala Moana Center, Oahu • (808) 973-9111 • shirokiya.com
This little restaurant outside Waikiki gets great props for its seared garlic ahi. But the truth is, we love just about every garlic dish on the menu – garlic crab, garlic mushrooms, garlic rice. You understand what it’s about. For those less fond of garlic, Irifune’s menu also features wonderful tempura donburi, sushi, tonkatsu, and more.
563 Kapahulu Ave., Oahu (808) 737-1141