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The 10 Hottest New Restaurants in Honolulu Right Now

Where to find everything from a $300 sushi omakase to $1 beer specials

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Today, Eater returns to Hawaii to focus on 10 newish restaurants that have been heating up the Honolulu dining scene. Once again, Eater asked Hawaii native and bi-coastal food writer Kathy YL Chan to offer up her picks of the buzziest openings of the past 12 months.

There's a serious San Francisco-Honolulu connection right now, with heavyweights like Michael Mina and Belinda Leong setting up shop in Hawaii (Stripsteak Waikiki, b. patisserie). Honolulu also continues to be a destination for fine Japanese fare, whether from a food stall (at the freshly reopened Shirokiya Japan Village Walk) or from an expensive sushi counter (Sushi Sho). Absent from the list is Senia, one of the most eagerly-waited restaurants in the country that promises elevated riffs on Hawaiian ingredients from two Per Se alums, which should be hitting the scene later this fall.

Without further ado, and in geographical order, the Eater Heatmap to Honolulu.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.
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1. Eating House 1849

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2330 Kalakaua Ave #322
Honolulu, HI 96815
(808) 924-1849
Visit Website

Eating House 1849 is a new restaurant concept from prolific chef Roy Yamaguchi. Diners will find the classic dishes that made Yamaguchi famous, but the focus is on the diverse cuisines familiar to Hawaii and its historic past. Think the nostalgic, old-Hawaii style of cooking, with plenty of heavy Portuguese and Filipino influence. Don’t skip the pipikaula (a classic Hawaiian dish of salted, dried short ribs) paired with poi from Hanalei.

2. Stripsteak Waikiki

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2330 Kalakaua Avenue, Honolulu
HI, 96815

Stripsteak Waikiki is Michael Mina’s first Hawaii venture (his second will be the Street — a food hall opening in spring 2017). Set on the top floor of the newly opened International Marketplace in Waikiki, Stripsteak is the classic steakhouse gone a touch lighter, with local influences. Don’t miss: a seat at the buzzy open-air bar, the "world wide wagyu" trio, ricotta-stuffed burrata, hamachi poke, and the dreamy guava shave ice for dessert.

3. Kona Coffee Purveyors | b.patisserie

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2330 Kalakaua Ave
Honolulu, HI 96815

This flagship location of Kona Coffee Purveyors (previously online and wholesale only) has many things going for it: excellent coffee, a smart tea menu, and housemade drinks (get the spiced milk tea made with carrot, tea, honey, and spices). KCP also houses Hawaii’s very own location of the highly-acclaimed, San Francisco-based b. Patisserie offering exclusive-to-Hawaii treats like the Kona coffee tart and passion fruit-lemon tart.

4. Sushi Sho

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383 Kalaimoku St
Honolulu, HI 96815
(808) 922-8111
Visit Website

Walk through BLT Market to find Sushi Sho, the brightest gem in Hawaii’s sushi scene. Nakazawa-san moved his whole family over from Tokyo (where he owns the original and beloved Sushi Sho) to open this Hawaii location. It’s dinner-service only, two seatings a night around a 10-person counter. The set omakase is $300 a person, but it’s a 30-course tour de force weaving local Hawaii ingredients (Kona abalone, Big Island ginger, and poi castella cake) throughout the tasting. Worth it for a big dinner blowout? Yes, yes, yes.

5. BLT Market

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383 Kalaimoku St
Honolulu, HI 96815

Tucked away just off the lobby of the new Ritz-Carlton Residences, Waikiki Beach is BLT Market, where Johan Svensson — who came from BLT Steak right down the street, and Aquavit in NYC right before that — heads up the kitchen. Here the light fare fits the breezy, open-air space. Dinner is where the kitchen shines, turning out dishes like Moloka’i steak tartare complete with sea asparagus, tender venison from Maui, and a collection of housemade pasta dishes.

6. Mahina & Sun’s

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412 Lewers St
Honolulu, HI 96815
(808) 564-7608
Visit Website

Mahina & Sun's is the fourth restaurant in chef Ed Kenny's empire (and the first outside of the Kaimuki neighborhood). Located inside the trendy, newly opened Surfjack Hotel in Waikiki, the emphasis here is on locally sourced ingredients, prepared in a clean and healthy style. Highlights include kahala (Hawaiian kampachi) crudo with preserved lemons and inamona (kukui nuts), and pa'i'ai (hand-pounded taro root) with akule fish.

Kathy YL Chan

7. Shirokiya Japan Village Walk

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1450 Ala Moana Blvd #1360
Honolulu, HI 96814

Locals were devastated when Shirokiya (a mini Japanese department store and food court heaven) closed earlier this year. But thankfully the food court section reopened on the other end of the mall. This new location is giant and packed all hours of the day. There are 56 food stalls spaced out across a 44,680-square-foot space. Where to eat? The choice is yours, though do look out for the Vintage Cave Bakery, Onoya (for mazemen), and Musubi Cafe Iyasume. And oh yes, the $1 beer stations.

8. Bozu

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1960 Kapiolani Blvd #209
Honolulu, HI 96826
(808) 955-7779

A photo posted by nadia (@nadia_blogs) on

9. Koa Cafe

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2700 S King St
Honolulu, HI 96826
(808) 941-7778
Visit Website

The owners of Koa Pancake House (one of Hawaii’s most popular breakfast chains) recently opened a branch in Mō‘ili‘ili. Whereas folks love Koa Pancake House for classic breakfast staples done well and fast, Koa Cafe is a spot for modern and inventive breakfast treats. There are butter mochi pancakes, gochujang fried chicken with Belgian waffles, and a vinha d'alhos eggs benedict topped with bacon hollandaise.

10. Over Easy Hawaii

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418 Kuulei Rd
Kailua, HI 96734

This is brunch you’ll actually crave. From Nik and Jennifer Lobendahn, a husband and wife team who met while working at Alan Wong’s, comes a welcome addition to the Kailua neighborhood. There are pancakes (complete with blueberry cream cheese) and custardy french toast, but Over Easy is best when it comes to savory dishes. Go with a friend and split the kalua pig hash with Okinawan potatoes and lomi tomato, and the eggs with rice and Portuguese sausage in a cabbage bone broth.

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1. Eating House 1849

2330 Kalakaua Ave #322, Honolulu, HI 96815

Eating House 1849 is a new restaurant concept from prolific chef Roy Yamaguchi. Diners will find the classic dishes that made Yamaguchi famous, but the focus is on the diverse cuisines familiar to Hawaii and its historic past. Think the nostalgic, old-Hawaii style of cooking, with plenty of heavy Portuguese and Filipino influence. Don’t skip the pipikaula (a classic Hawaiian dish of salted, dried short ribs) paired with poi from Hanalei.

2330 Kalakaua Ave #322
Honolulu, HI 96815

2. Stripsteak Waikiki

2330 Kalakaua Avenue, Honolulu, HI, 96815

Stripsteak Waikiki is Michael Mina’s first Hawaii venture (his second will be the Street — a food hall opening in spring 2017). Set on the top floor of the newly opened International Marketplace in Waikiki, Stripsteak is the classic steakhouse gone a touch lighter, with local influences. Don’t miss: a seat at the buzzy open-air bar, the "world wide wagyu" trio, ricotta-stuffed burrata, hamachi poke, and the dreamy guava shave ice for dessert.

2330 Kalakaua Avenue, Honolulu
HI, 96815

3. Kona Coffee Purveyors | b.patisserie

2330 Kalakaua Ave, Honolulu, HI 96815

This flagship location of Kona Coffee Purveyors (previously online and wholesale only) has many things going for it: excellent coffee, a smart tea menu, and housemade drinks (get the spiced milk tea made with carrot, tea, honey, and spices). KCP also houses Hawaii’s very own location of the highly-acclaimed, San Francisco-based b. Patisserie offering exclusive-to-Hawaii treats like the Kona coffee tart and passion fruit-lemon tart.

2330 Kalakaua Ave
Honolulu, HI 96815

4. Sushi Sho

383 Kalaimoku St, Honolulu, HI 96815

Walk through BLT Market to find Sushi Sho, the brightest gem in Hawaii’s sushi scene. Nakazawa-san moved his whole family over from Tokyo (where he owns the original and beloved Sushi Sho) to open this Hawaii location. It’s dinner-service only, two seatings a night around a 10-person counter. The set omakase is $300 a person, but it’s a 30-course tour de force weaving local Hawaii ingredients (Kona abalone, Big Island ginger, and poi castella cake) throughout the tasting. Worth it for a big dinner blowout? Yes, yes, yes.

383 Kalaimoku St
Honolulu, HI 96815

5. BLT Market

383 Kalaimoku St, Honolulu, HI 96815

Tucked away just off the lobby of the new Ritz-Carlton Residences, Waikiki Beach is BLT Market, where Johan Svensson — who came from BLT Steak right down the street, and Aquavit in NYC right before that — heads up the kitchen. Here the light fare fits the breezy, open-air space. Dinner is where the kitchen shines, turning out dishes like Moloka’i steak tartare complete with sea asparagus, tender venison from Maui, and a collection of housemade pasta dishes.

383 Kalaimoku St
Honolulu, HI 96815

6. Mahina & Sun’s

412 Lewers St, Honolulu, HI 96815
Kathy YL Chan

Mahina & Sun's is the fourth restaurant in chef Ed Kenny's empire (and the first outside of the Kaimuki neighborhood). Located inside the trendy, newly opened Surfjack Hotel in Waikiki, the emphasis here is on locally sourced ingredients, prepared in a clean and healthy style. Highlights include kahala (Hawaiian kampachi) crudo with preserved lemons and inamona (kukui nuts), and pa'i'ai (hand-pounded taro root) with akule fish.

412 Lewers St
Honolulu, HI 96815

7. Shirokiya Japan Village Walk

1450 Ala Moana Blvd #1360, Honolulu, HI 96814

Locals were devastated when Shirokiya (a mini Japanese department store and food court heaven) closed earlier this year. But thankfully the food court section reopened on the other end of the mall. This new location is giant and packed all hours of the day. There are 56 food stalls spaced out across a 44,680-square-foot space. Where to eat? The choice is yours, though do look out for the Vintage Cave Bakery, Onoya (for mazemen), and Musubi Cafe Iyasume. And oh yes, the $1 beer stations.

1450 Ala Moana Blvd #1360
Honolulu, HI 96814

8. Bozu

1960 Kapiolani Blvd #209, Honolulu, HI 96826

A photo posted by nadia (@nadia_blogs) on

1960 Kapiolani Blvd #209
Honolulu, HI 96826

9. Koa Cafe

2700 S King St, Honolulu, HI 96826

The owners of Koa Pancake House (one of Hawaii’s most popular breakfast chains) recently opened a branch in Mō‘ili‘ili. Whereas folks love Koa Pancake House for classic breakfast staples done well and fast, Koa Cafe is a spot for modern and inventive breakfast treats. There are butter mochi pancakes, gochujang fried chicken with Belgian waffles, and a vinha d'alhos eggs benedict topped with bacon hollandaise.

2700 S King St
Honolulu, HI 96826

10. Over Easy Hawaii

418 Kuulei Rd, Kailua, HI 96734

This is brunch you’ll actually crave. From Nik and Jennifer Lobendahn, a husband and wife team who met while working at Alan Wong’s, comes a welcome addition to the Kailua neighborhood. There are pancakes (complete with blueberry cream cheese) and custardy french toast, but Over Easy is best when it comes to savory dishes. Go with a friend and split the kalua pig hash with Okinawan potatoes and lomi tomato, and the eggs with rice and Portuguese sausage in a cabbage bone broth.

418 Kuulei Rd
Kailua, HI 96734

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