Restaurateurs expand empire with 'Elua, side ventures
THE two-chefs-one-kitchen venture 'Elua Restaurant & Wine Bar
will open in early May in the old L'Uraku space on Kapiolani Boulevard.
It was first reported here Feb. 13 that Hawaii chefs Donato Loperfido and Philippe Padovani planned to open a restaurant together.
Wine will be a focus of the restaurant, which will feature a 24-spigot cruvinet and offer by-the-glass pairings with its menu of trendy small-plates and traditional entrees. The average check will be $35 per person without beverages.
'Elua will serve lunch Monday through Friday and may expand service to the weekends. Dinner and a late night menu of savory and dessert dishes will be served nightly.
Opening is targeted for May 5, if renovations go according to plan.
'Elua's partners are hiring and want to mentor college and high school students exploring culinary careers -- but only those "with big ambition ... the ones who really have a passion," Loperfido said.
Both chefs' professional plates are overflowing, with 'Elua and expansion of each's own empire.
Padovani will open a second location of Chocolates by Padovani, on the ground floor at the Hyatt Regency Waikiki, next week.
It will carry the dozens of types of chocolates and ganaches created by brothers Philippe and Pierre Padovani, as well as Padovani's Coffee -- a new line of five Hawaii-grown coffees that should be ready for prime time within 60 days.
Loperfido's new baby, named Pasta et Basta, arrives April 2 in the space vacated by Yanni's Greek restaurant.
Pasta et Basta means 'pasta and that's it' in Italian, but pizzas and panini sandwiches will also be served, Loperfido said. Pasta and mozzarella will be made fresh on-premises.
Lunch, happy hour and dinner items will be less than $15. He will also set up a Flavors of Italy retail shop in the restaurant -- an extension of a venture operated by his wife, Desiree, that wholesales certified foods and wines.
TheBuzz had to ask if 'pasta and that's it' is meant to dissuade customers from asking for white rice -- of which Loperfido is not a fan.
Laughing, he said, "I think, you know, that it could be a fact, yes."
is a reporter with the Star-Bulletin. Call 529-4747, fax 529-4750 or write to Erika Engle, Honolulu Star-Bulletin, 500 Ala Moana Blvd., No. 7-210, Honolulu, HI 96813. She can also be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org