In The Mix
Hot Shokudo packs 'em in; service good
I'M NOT afraid to admit that I wasn't the biggest fan of Shokudo
when it first opened in Honolulu.
Too many club kids flocked to the Kapiolani Boulevard restaurant when it opened last March, giving me the impression it was just a trendy spot for the beautiful people to eat dinner before a visit to "SKYLiNE" or the Ocean Club.
Boy, was I wrong. Shokudo continues to pack in the crowds, both during traditional dinner hours and late at night on the weekends. I'm also happy to report that the level of service has improved dramatically since my first visit.
If you haven't paid a visit lately, now is the time to stop in and try a few of the seasonal menu items available through the end of July. My new favorite is the Ramen Rice in Soup ($6.75), a simple bowl of rice in pork-based broth, topped with fried onion, char siu pork and a bit of pickled ginger. It's the perfect ending after a night of drinking.
The Lightly-Roasted Mackerel ($9.75) is another winner and has a pretty cool presentation, too. A server brings out the fish, then proceeds to fire up a butane torch right at your table! And I was pleasantly surprised by the Potato Egg Salad Pizza ($9.75), which tastes exactly like it sounds -- an egg salad-topped pizza.
Another summer special is the Moonstone sampler ($8), sake shots infused with pear, peach and raspberry flavors. And don't sleep on Echigo beer ($7.50), my new favorite brew from the Land of the Rising Sun.
Shokudo is open until 2 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. Call 941-3701 ...
HEAD OVER to Slammers Bar and Grill tonight for a taste of Manoa Backyard, an up-and-coming acoustic rock/reggae outfit born out of jam sessions dating back more than a decade.
Most of the band's current members met while students at Oregon State University, where they originally formed the group Cane Fire. They eventually relocated back home to Oahu, regrouping in Kaimuki and recording a demo with Chris Lau (son of Slack Key Festival organizer Milton Lau) that has been well received by local music industry insiders.
Another local band, Harrison, will open things up tonight. If you can't make it to Slammers, check out Manoa Backyard next Friday at Detox ...
LOCAL PROMOTERS Unity Crayons seem to have found a new base of operations at Detox. All ages are welcome tonight for the "Summer Bash Punk Show," starting at 6 p.m. Five bucks gets you access to live performances by the Insurgents, White Rose, Mistermeaner, Smitz and Extra Stout ...
AND LADIES, don't forget about the Men of Las Vegas at 7 p.m. tomorrow and Saturday at Fashion 45 ...