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Sunday, December 10, 2017

FIVE SPICE KITCHEN

FIVE SPICE KITCHEN
808 SHERIDAN STREET
HONOLULU, HI. 96814
808-330-6889
HOURS:  Tuesday thru Friday 11:00 AM - 3:00 PM / 4:00 PM - 9:00 PM (Closed Monday)
                 Saturday and Sunday 10:00 AM - 3:00 PM / 4:00 PM - 9:00 PM 
                 
Enjoyed Brunch at the new Five Spice Kitchen.  Food and service were good but I thought the prices were a bit high.  We ordered three items and shared them with the table.  First up was the Loco Loco ($18) with a large burger, two eggs, rice, gravy and fried onions.  My eggs were overcooked so the yolk did not run all over the burger.  The yolks were hard which I did not like.  Flavor was ok but $18 is quite a bit to pay I thought.  Yes the burger is large and Wagyu Beef is expensive.  The Kim Chee Reuben ($15) was a good sandwich and my Wife loved the salad with Sesame Dressing. She raved about this.  I liked the sandwich and would order it again.  The Kim Chee was not too overpowering and the flavor of the Corned Beef came through.  The Roasted Chicken Sandwich ($14) was good with a perfectly toasted Brioche Bun.  The flavor of the Pesto came through more than the chicken.
All in all we liked Five Spice Kitchen which according to our waiter serves American food with five Asian spices used in every single dish except the desserts.  I really did not distinguish any of the spices used in our three dishes.  The food and presentations are good here and we all agree that we would return again.  

THE 808 CENTER ON SHERIDAN STREET ACROSS FROM WALL-MART
FIVE SPICE KITCHEN IS IN THE OLD URBUN BISTRO LOCATION AT 808 CENTER
BOTH INDOOR AND PATIO SEATING AVAILABLE
FIVE SPICE KITCHEN BRUNCH MENU
REUBEN WITH KIM CHEE

LOCO MOCO
ROASTED CHICKEN SANDWICH



HOKKAIDO BRUG

HOKKAIDO BRUG
ALA MOANA SHOPPING CENTER
1450 ALA MOANA BLVD
HONOLULU, HI. 96814
808-945-2200
HOURS:  Monday thru Saturday 8:00 AM - 9:00 PM / Sunday 9:00 AM - 7:00 PM
https://www.facebook.com/brugbakeryalamoana/
                 
Visited Brug Bakery in the old Shirokiya location at Ala Moana Shopping Center.  My Daughter loved the pastries and I hated them.  Our first pass through the service at the counter sucked.  The girl did no smile, talk or even say Thank You.  She looked lost and miserable.  Went back to buy a loaf of Raisin Bread for my Wife and another girl was all smiles and polite.  The first girl that did not smile did not offer to heat our items which you really need to do.  Eating the Sausage Roll and Turkey Pot Pie cold was terrible.  I took a few small bites and threw them away.  Yuck.






















ANNIVERSARY DINNER BY CHEF SERG

ANNIVERSARY DINNER
BY CHEF SERG

Wow....how blessed are we to have our friend Chef Serg cook us up an incredible Anniversary
dinner at his taco stand in Manoa.  Serg shut off a small section of the patio and placed a sign in front that said "Private Party".  This about made me cry.  As I looked in the back, there was a black tablecloth with wine glasses set for the evening.  Wanted to cry again.  This was so cool and unexpected.  As we sat down we already knew we made the right choice for our Anniversary dinner.  As the evening progressed we knew this was one of the best meals and evenings of our lives.  The setting in Manoa on the patio with my Wife and Daughter was far better than any fine dining restaurant on the planet.  This was where we were supposed to be on this night.  It was meant to be.  Chef Serg's Wife joined us as the Garlic Bread and Antipasto Salad hit the table.  She is a local girl and comes from a family of eleven children.  She met Serg while they were both working in Las Vegas.  Serg was a chef at several casinos, fine dining restaurants, Italian and Mexican Restaurants and even a personal chef for a casino tycoon.  The guy truly has cooked everything you can imagine and he really does them all well.  Serg and his Wife decided to leave the Las Vegas life and move back to Hawaii.  They arrived with absolutely no money and within three months he opened Serg's Mexican Kitchen in Manoa.  The restaurant was an immediate success with lines of people waiting for Serg's Mexican food day after day.  To set up and create a restaurant, buy ingredients and develop a menu with no money is a testament to Serg's character, hard work ethic and burning desire to succeed and take care of his family.  The man is a working machine with one of the biggest hearts I have ever met.  There is nothing Serg would not do for others and on this night he spent the entire day cooking up a menu for my family that truly was amazing.  After getting us settled I opened a bottle of wine that I had brought for the evening.  Actually brought a few and we polished them all off.  Since my Wife does not drink it was up to Serg and me to finish the wine.  First up Serg brought out braided Garlic Rolls with Parmesan Cheese.  My Daughter went nuts over these carb treats and so did my Wife.  They put a big dent in the basket of bread and I think would have finished them all if they could.  Next up was the Antipasti Salad with homemade Balsamic Dressing.  Full of cheeses, Italian meats and vegetables.  Probably the best Antipasti Salad I have had in Hawaii.  Serg sat down and joined us as the main courses began to arrive.  First up were the Meatballs with Rigatoni.  I had just come from Las Vegas and enjoyed Rao's Meatballs which are famous.  They are really good.  Serg's Meatballs I can honestly say were better.  So moist and full of flavor.  The sauce brought the Meatballs to another level and the entire family loved them.  I asked Serg what type of meats he uses in the Meatballs.  Must have some Pork and Veal in there I thought.  Nope he said, they are all beef.
To make a Meatball this good and moist with all beef impressed me.  Next up was Chicken Marsala.  Lightly breaded and fried chicken with a Mushroom Marsala Sauce.  Simply delicious.  The Penne Pasta with Shrimp Vodka Sauce was incredible.  Huge Shrimp and a velvety sauce that was delicious.  I was so satisfied here but there was much more to come.  Lobster Ravioli was next and it was amazing.  The Ravioli was cooked perfectly and the taste of the Lobster shined through.  So happy.  We kept going back and forth for seconds and thirds.  Amazing how much we ate I thought but there was plenty left over.  Serg insisted on bringing out dessert so he went back into the kitchen and returned with a massive plate covered in whipped cream and chocolate sauce.  There was a fried tortilla on the bottom topped with ice cream, sauce and several Churros.  Out of this world delicious.
The topper to this evening is that Serg did not know it was our Anniversary prior to the dinner.  We told him when we got there.  This is a dinner he prepared for us out of the goodness of his heart.  Love the man!  Amazing how things happen in life.  We were not expecting anything big for our special day and we end up at a Mexican restaurant and have the dinner and time of our lives.

TOTAL SURPRISE TO SEE THAT SERG HAD RESERVED THIS SECTION JUST FOR US
WHAT A GREAT SURPRISE
GARLIC PARMESAN KNOTS
ANTIPASTI SALAD
MORE BREAD
MEATBALLS WITH PENNE PASTA AND RICOTTA CHEESE
CHICKEN MARSALA
SHRIMP VODKA SAUCE
LOBSTER RAVIOLI
THIS WAS OH SO GOOD!
OUR ANNIVERSARY DINNER WAS ONE TO REMEMBER
CHEF SERG AND ME




Saturday, December 9, 2017

RAO'S - CAESARS PALACE, LAS VEGAS

RAO'S
CAESARS PALACE
3570 S. LAS VEGAS BLVD
LAS VEGAS, NV. 89109
702-731-7267
HOURS:  Sunday thru Thursday 5:00 PM - 10:00 PM
                 Friday and Saturday 5:00 PM - 10:30 PM
http://raosrestaurants.com/location_lv.html
https://www.yelp.com/biz/raos-las-vegas-3
https://www.facebook.com/RaosRestaurant/

Rao's is also a "go to" spot for Italian food when in Las Vegas.  Never have been disappointed here and there are so many things I still have yet to try.  On this visit we enjoyed the Meatballs and Seafood Salad as appetizers for our table of three.  Meatballs moist and flavorful and a great way to start any meal at Rao's.  The Seafood Salad was jammed packed with Seafood including Lobster but there is no Lettuce. It's simply all fresh chilled Seafood.  Delicious.  I went for the Lobster Papardelle and it was one of the best pasta dishes of my life.  Huge chunks of sweet lobster tail and some darn good pasta.  Service was just ok with our waiter just going through the motions to get us in and out.
Click link below for previous post on Rao's;
https://greateatshawaii.blogspot.com/2017/02/raos-las-vegas.html

A LITTLE CHIANTI TO START THE MEAL
RAO'S MEATBALLS AND SEAFOOD SALAD
SEAFOOD SALAD
CHILLED FRESH SEAFOOD AND THATS IT
RAO'S MEATBALLS
LINGUINE WITH CLAMS
LOBSTER PAPARDELLE



BOBBY'S BURGER PALACE - LAS VEGAS

BOBBY'S BURGER PALACE
MANDARIN ORIENTAL LAS VEGAS
3750 S. LAS VEGAS BLVD
LAS VEGAS, NV. 89109
702-598-0191
HOURS:  Daily 11:00 AM - 12:00 AM
http://bobbysburgerpalace.com/locations/9/las-vegas-strip
https://www.yelp.com/biz/bobbys-burger-palace-las-vegas
https://www.facebook.com/bobbysburgerpalace/

Readers of my blog know that I am a huge fan of In n' Out Burger.  Thats really my favorite burger and I usually have at least one every trip to the mainland.  On this visit to Las Vegas, I saw that Bobby Flay now has a burger joint directly in front of the Aria Hotel.  I walked over for lunch one day just to try the burgers from a celebrity chef who I have followed for 20 years.  I entered to find the set up identical to Shake Shack. Large menu board on the wall and order at the counter.  The line was maybe six deep when the bartender from bar inside the restaurant came over and announced that we could order and dine at the bar.  Smart bartender as four people in line and myself bolted to the bar where we were quickly given menus.  I knew that I wanted a simple Cheeseburger and nothing more.  Than I saw Worlds Greatest Milk Shakes so I just had to try the Milkshake.  I ordered a Chocolate Milk Shake which they call a Black and White ($6.95).  The Shake arrived and after one gulp I concluded that this possible could be the Worlds Best.  It was chocolate frozen perfection.  So delicious.  Off to the left I saw a plate of Onion Rings and boom I had to have them.  The Buttermilk Onion Rings ($4.75) were huge a tasty.  Loved the Ranch Dipping Sauce with them.  This really made these some of the best Onion Rings ever.  I ordered the Palace Classic Burger ($10.25) with Lettuce, Tomato and Onion.  All I could think was that my In n' Out Burger is only $2.70 and I am sitting here paying $10 for a burger.  The Burger arrived and it was beautiful.  A plate of color that surprised me with just how good it looked.  Potato Chips and a slice of Pickle were included.  The bartender presented me with a basket of which included Ketchup, Mustard, BBQ Sauce, Green Chili Sauce and I think a Steak Sauce.  I went with traditional Ketchup.  This Burger was delicious.  Probably one of my favorite Burgers next to In n' Out.  Loved the fact that you could taste each ingredient.  The Lettuce, Tomato and Onion all fresh and large enough to get the flavor.  The Burger was cooked and seasoned to perfection.  Really enjoyed it but only ate half to keep my tight figure.
Very surprised how good Bobby's Burger Palace is and will go back again.

BOBBY'S BURGER PALACE IN LAS VEGAS
MENU ON WALL AND COUNTER TO ORDER ON RIGHT
ORDER AT THE COUNTER AND THEY WILL BRING YOUR FOOD TO THE TABLE.
I OPTED TO SIT AND EAT AT THE BAR
BOBBY'S BURGER PALACE MENU
BOBBY'S BURGERS
SALADS AND SIDES
MILK SHAKES DRINKS
BOBBY'S SAUCES AND CONDIMENTS
MILK SHAKE, ONION RINGS AND CHEESEBURGER 
BLACK AND WHITE MILK SHAKE
BUTTERMILK ONION RINGS
BOBBY'S PALACE CLASSIC CHEESEBURGER