Jason Genegabus

Friday, November 12, 2004

Bayview style

Kaneohe residents must really love Chinese food.

Don't believe me? Take a trip to the Windward side sometime and see for yourself.

Sure, you can choose Korean, Thai or fast food, but Chinese cuisine is king in these parts. You'd have no problem eating at a different restaurant every night of the week, and wouldn't have to ever leave Kaneohe.

FINDING A place to grab a cold beer and watch the live feed of Monday Night Football, on the other hand, is an exercise in futility.

People living out here must all have wet bars installed in their homes, because I had an incredibly difficult time trying to locate a decent watering hole anywhere along the stretch of Kamehameha Highway from Castle Junction to Windward Mall.

While Kailua residents have a few more options to consider, their counterparts in Kaneohe are sorely underserved. But after a little digging, I managed to find a cozy little spot that seems to have cornered the market on Monday Night Football in these parts.

Bayview Restaurant
Location: 45-285 Kaneohe Bay Drive
(Bayview Golf Course)
Hours: 8 a.m. to midnight daily
Phone: 234-5600


LOCATED NEXT to Bayview Golf Links, the lounge at Bayview Restaurant is an intimate space. With only three tables in the room, you're probably going to end up sitting at one of the 10 barstools instead.

Want to seem like a regular? Enter the lounge through the parking lot entrance, which is well-marked and much easier to access than the restaurant's front door.

Coming in through the back on a Monday afternoon will also save you from the uncomfortable feeling of dozens of people wishing you would stop blocking their view; part of the restaurant's dining room is reserved for football fans, with additional televisions and a special pupu buffet available.

Blake Masaki, a bartender at the bar at the Bayview Restaurant in Kaneohe, can whip up something cold and refreshing.

THE LACK of drinking options on this side of the island means you'll see an interesting mix of people in the lounge at Bayview.

Sitting at the bar, I noticed a well-balanced mix of young and old, men and women, local and military, all looking for a place to kick back with a cocktail and take in a football game.

And as I've written in the past, it seems that Windward residents are a lot more friendly in a bar environment (although in Kaneohe, at least, it might be that a lack of alternatives keeps them on their best behavior).

When it was announced that one customer in the lounge was celebrating a birthday, a number of complete strangers bought the guy a round.

"Over here, we're all family," said a guy at the next table, reaching over to give him a pat on the back as shots began to line up.

Live football, cold beer and a generous helping of the Aloha Spirit - all the ingredients are there for an enjoyable Monday afternoon in the lounge at Bayview Restaurant.

How much for a Bud Light?
The Barfly spent $2.50 for a bottle of Bud Light during Monday Night Football this week. Normal price after 6 p.m. is $3, but happy hour is extended on Mondays until the game finishes.

Get things to do?
Besides a lone television above the bar and a single Megatouch game machine, a couple of dartboards in the adjoining room provide customers with something to pass the time.

What about the grinds?
There are more than three dozen items on Bayview Restaurant's pupu menu, and that's not even counting the regular menu items available. The sizzling steak platter ($13) didn't disappoint, although we ended up with a disproportionate amount of sauteed mushrooms and onions for the amount of meat we were served. Other menu items include pork chops ($8), teriyaki chicken ($8) and fried saimin ($6.50). You can even get three different types of french fries here - regular ($5), garlic ($6) or waffle-cut ($6).

And the help?
The lone bartender on duty seemed to have his work cut out for him during the football game, juggling orders from two servers on duty while tending bar and running food orders to the kitchen. I'm sure it's a lot slower during the rest of the week, but it might be a good idea to hire an extra bartender on Mondays during football season to keep up with the crowds.

See the Columnists section for some past articles.

Barfly appears every Friday in Star-Bulletin Weekend.
E-mail Jason Genegabus at jason@starbulletin.com with suggestions of neighborhood bars to visit.



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