Oahu’s Hottest New Restaurants

By Tannya Joaquin

Tommy Bahama.  Photo:  Tannya Joaquin.

Tommy Bahama. Photo: Tannya Joaquin.

The best new restaurants on Oahu prove there’s more to local food than spam and shave ice. Here are our top picks to please your palate during summer 2016.

Over Easy

Photo:  Tannya Joaquin.

Photo: Tannya Joaquin.

Over Easy, the brand new baby of former Alan Wong chefs Nikolaos and Jennifer Lobendahn elevates brunch into an “experience.”

“It’s not just eggs and toast on a plate,” points out Jennifer, although you can order that. You won’t want to after tasting their Kalua Pig Hash or Brunch Bowl. Nik says his goal is to “hit you with flavors you haven’t experienced.”

Photo:  Tannya Joaquin.

Photo: Tannya Joaquin.

The casual 35 seat space with outdoor seating fits the Kailua Town vibe. It was years in the making from concept to construction to cooking (which only started a few weeks ago!)

“Wake up to really good food & drinks,” offers Jennifer of the concept. Yes, drinks! Think Mimosas, Bloody Mary’s, even breakfast beers and eventually, monthly wine dinners to showcase Nik’s fine dining background.

SKY Waikiki

Photo:  SKY Waikiki.

Photo: SKY Waikiki.

This hip rooftop lounge with wrap around Waikiki views is making waves with its new Surf Inspired cocktails.

Photo:  SKY Waikiki.

Photo: SKY Waikiki.

Mixologist Jennifer Ackrill created the line-up, although she admits “I don’t surf.” A bartender who does sipped and shared similarities to surf spots. Ackrill added an ironic twist. A “girly” pink drink has the strongest kick of the collection. The Sunset Sazerac paired with the garlic chicken slider with furikake mac salad create a combo as killer as the sets at Sunset.

Tommy Bahama Waikiki

Photo:  Tannya Joaquin.

Photo: Tannya Joaquin.

Tommy Bahama is a welcome arrival in Waikiki with casual rooftop bites complete with sand (perfect for restless kids) over another dining area and shop.

Photo:  Tannya Joaquin.

Photo: Tannya Joaquin.

Ahi tacos are a perfect starter to share family style. But, you’ll want to devour the Scallop sliders on your own!

Photo:  Tannya Joaquin.

Photo: Tannya Joaquin.

Save room for the Pineapple Crème brulee. It’s popular with regulars for a reason.

ARVO

Photo:  Tannya Joaquin.

Photo: Tannya Joaquin.

ARVO is a new addiction in Kakaʻako. The Aussie coffee house’s popular avocado toasts, Matcha chia pudding and Lattes are almost too beautiful to eat. Note: They taste as good as they look.

Fête

Photo:  Tannya Joaquin.

Photo: Tannya Joaquin.

Classic food makes a comeback at Chinatown darling Fete, which serves up “simple” salads, sandwiches, pastas and more. “It’s difficult to do “simple dishes right” notes owners Robynne Mai’i and Chuck Bussler.

Photo:  Tannya Joaquin.

Photo: Tannya Joaquin.

They nailed it with dishes, drinks and desserts that hit the sweet spot. Their Mule is a must. So’s the Pineapple Crostada. A case of love at first bite!

What did you think? Share your reaction and earn 100 points!

Recent most reacted articles