Sunday, April 11, 2004


Dining around the islands

Fast-food sites get healthier

Two fast-food chains turned the focus on healthier dining this week.

McDonald's introduced its Salads and More line, showcasing two new sandwiches, the McVeggie Burger and Grilled Chicken on Wheat. The veggie burger, a soy patty, and the chicken sandwich are served on whole-wheat buns with lettuce, tomato, onion and barbecue sauce.

How they stack up nutritionally: According to McDonald's, a veggie burger contains 350 calories and 8 grams of fat; a chicken sandwich, 320 calories and 7 grams of fat. A regular Quarter-Pounder, by comparison, is 430 calories and 21 grams of fat. (The real whopper, calorie-wise, at McDonald's is the Big Mac at 600 calories and 33 grams of fat.)

The new low-fat line of foods also includes established dishes of entree salads, white-meat Chicken McNuggets and the snack-size Fruit & Yogurt Parfait.

Jack in the Box, meanwhile, has introduced an online "Build Your Meal" calculator, which allows customers to compute the nutritional value of any sandwich.

Figure out, for example, how many calories you can save by cutting one slice of cheese from an Ultimate Cheeseburger (90), how many carb grams a bun costs you (45) or the value of replacing mayo-onion sauce with low-fat herb mayo (you save 70 calories and 8.5 grams of fat).

Visit to make your calculations.

Napa Night

Culinary students at Kapiolani Community College are hosting a five-course fund-raising dinner featuring the wines of Napa Valley on April 24 in the on-campus Ka Ikena Dining Room.

The menu: Oxtail Consommé, Poached Onaga in Saffron Nage, Seared Supreme of Squab, Roasted Petite Rack of Veal and Nalo Greens Salad.

Cost is $100 to help send students on culinary tours of Thailand and Europe. Seating begins at 5:30 p.m. Call 734-9499.

New at 3660

Bistro Wednesday: The banquet room will be turned into a French bistro, 5:30 to 10 p.m. Wednesdays beginning this week, offering a bistro menu and guest sommeliers to discuss wines. The menu includes French Onion Soup, Duo of Rougie Foie Gras, Grilled Wild Salmon, Steak Frites and Burgundy Braised Short Ribs of Beef. Bottles of wine are 20 percent off on Bistro Wednesday throughout April.

Wine dinner: Fred Holloway, of Justin Vineyards & Winery, hosts a five-course dinner, 6:30 p.m. April 22. Chef Russell Siu's menu: Slow-Roasted Wild Salmon (with Chardonnay "Overlook"), Pan-Seared Quail (Syrah "Estate Vineyard"), Fire-Roasted Beef Tenderloin (Cabernet Sauvignon and Justin Isosceles), cheese plate and Chocolate Truffle Tart with Raspberries. Cost is $65.

Call 737-1177.

Sergio's turns 2

Sergio's Italian Restaurant in the Hilton Hawaiian Village celebrates its second anniversary with a benefit dinner, 7 to 11 p.m. Saturday.

The menu will include Sergio's signature dishes, including Shrimp Scampi, Chicken Parmigiana and Osso Buco Lamb Shanks. There will also be a silent auction and entertainment by "American Idol" finalist Jonah Moananu.

Proceeds will go to Tech Corps Hawaii, a nonprofit group that offers technology support and mentoring programs for local schools.

Cost is $40 in advance, $50 at the door. Ticket includes two drinks. Call 951-6900.

Spring wines

Kapiolani Community College concludes its Spring Wine Series with two events at the W Hotel's Diamond Head Grill. Lisa Gmur, instructor with Better Brands, leads a class featuring wines paired to dishes by chef Todd Wells. Sessions run 6 to 7:30 p.m. Wednesdays and cost $28 each. Call 734-9211. The schedule:

The Aussie Challenge: Compare Australian wines with similar wines from other countries; Wednesday.

Liquid Desserts: A tasting of meal-ending wines including champagne, port, cognac and Madeira; April 28.

Secretarial dining

Whether you still use the word "secretary" or go for the contemporary "administrative professional," the special day for the most indispensable of employees is coming up. Reservations are in order. Here are some suggestions:

Ala Moana Hotel: KINE radio co-hosts an "Aloha Luncheon Show" with the Brothers Cazimero, Vaihi and the Bruddahs, 10:30 a.m. April 21 in the Hibiscus Ballroom. Hawaiian-style brunch served until noon, followed by a live radio broadcast, noon to 1 p.m. Cost is $29, $19 children. Call 955-4811.

Parc Café, Waikiki Parc Hotel: Dishes from the Caribbean, Mediterranean and Mexico have been added to the lunch buffets, April 19 to 23. Cost is $21.95 ($1 per year in age for children). Lunch hours are 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. A wide range of soups, salads and entrees includes a pasta station with seafood, Jerked Chicken, Potato Pancake with Cream Fraiche, Marinated Sirloin Burritos and Caribbean Style Big Island Cured Pork. Made-to-order lychee, banana and cherries flambé are offered at the dessert table. Call 931-6643.

Sansei Seafood Restaurant & Sushi Bar: Opens for lunch April 20 and 21, with full sushi menu and select items from the dinner menu. Also offering a $25 four-course kaiseki lunch: Mango Crab Salad Hand Roll, Seared Fresh Ahi Salad, Grilled Filet Mignon & Pesto-Marinated Grilled Jumbo Prawn and dessert of Granny Smith Apple Tart. Hours are 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Call 536-6286.

3660 on the Rise: Lunch buffet, 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. April 21, includes Caesar Salad with Popcorn Shrimp or Grilled Chicken, Shichimi Seared Breast of Chicken, Vegetarian Lasagna, Fresh Catch of the Day and Braised Shoulder of Beef in Mushroom Sauce. Cost is $22.50. Call 737-1177.

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