We’ve shared a lot on Exploration: Hawaii, especially our favorite hikes and places to dine. That said, this is one restaurant that I’m not particularly ready to give away just yet. It’s a sushi bar that is more of a hole-in-the-wall. Actually, it kind of is, literally, a hole in the wall of a larger restaurant. It’s frequented by locals who like to eat good, talk loud, and drink a lot. Did I mention that this sushi bar is BYOB. Yup, and many regulars drag along their own coolers filled with ice and their favorite alcoholic beverage of choice. Their 11-piece omakase is a great value at just $30. Now do you get why I’m keeping this one to myself?
Chef Masaharu Morimoto is one of my favorite Iron Chefs. When Coty and I were in Philadelphia several years ago, I was excited to make reservations at his namesake restaurant there. I remember the cool lighting in the booths that changed colors. I was even more excited when I first found out that he was opening a restaurant in Waikiki.
I tend to plan trips around places to eat. I try to eat good when I travel by becoming immersed in the food culture of whatever city I’m in. Through the years, I’ve learned that it’s best to forego fast and easy as an excuse to eat when wandering through an unfamiliar city. Knowing how something tastes and what to expect from each bite should not be a pre-requisite for any meal that you eat when traveling. Instead, eat good by finding what the locals eat and then seeking it out. Eat good by trying something new and exciting, and maybe a little scary. Eat good by devouring something that your taste buds have never tasted. Eat good by finding adventure in the food that you eat.
I’m spoiled when it comes to the luxuries of fine sushi. It wasn’t always this way, though. A decade ago, the closest thing to adventurous that I would get in a sushi bar (and I use the term sushi bar loosely here to mean rotating belt-type establishments like Genki Sushi ) was ordering a crab mayo roll.
Last month, we celebrated Joel’s birthday by dining at my favorite sushi restaurant on the island, Sushi Sasabune. As per our birthday celebration tradition, the birthday boy got to choose, and he chose well. Of course, we did the omakase, there’s no better way to do Sasabune other than to sit at the sushi bar and wait in anticipation for whatever it is that the sushi chef will present next.