NEW BLOG FEATURE

NEW: VIEW RIGHT SIDE TAB AND SELECT
CITY FOR TASTE OF HAWAII FAVORITES!

Monday, December 15, 2008

HIROSHI EURASION TAPAS

HIROSHI EURASION TAPAS
Honolulu, HI

Wow.......This place is excellent.  When our friends asked us to join them for dinner at Hiroshi I had no idea what the place was all about.  Eurasian Tapas?  This place has been opened for years and I have never heard anyone recommend or say anything about it.  We went in blind not knowing what to expect and came out with eyes wide open with pleasure.  We started with wine selected by Master Sommelier Chuck Furuja.  Chuck is a warm and very personable gentlemen.  He took time to explain each bottle of wine and share some of his personal life with us.  This was refreshing and set the tone for what turned out to be a very enjoyable evening.  There were 6 people in our party and we decided to order a bunch of small plates and several large plates that would be shared family style.  We started with foie gras sushi.  This dish was off the hook awesome.  The foie gras melted in your mouth like butter.  Our two orders quickly became four as everyone enjoyed this dish.  Next up were Portuguese Sausage Potstickers.  Served with sweet corn, garlic chili foam and truffled ponzu sauce.  Awesome.  The Kampachi Carpaccio with tofu and ponzu vinaigrette was next.  This was also perfect and so good that we ordered more.  We tried the truffled crab cakes, steamed Moi served in a bag.  These were great too.  For the main course we ordered a Rib Eye Steak and Chilean Sea Bass that was cut into small pieces so we could share.  EVERYTHING THAT WAS SERVED WAS EXCELLENT.  There are few places that we have been that knock every dish out of the park.  Hiroshi did it again and again.  This was one of the best meals I can ever remember.  The service was excellent too.  Our server was always smiling and offering to accommodate every request.  The high level yet modest and sincere service from Chuck Furuya was amazing.  There are few Master Sommeliers that are as down to earth and humble.  Chuck is from Hawaii and he has not forgotten his roots or family values.
What a great night in Hawaii.  Our thanks to Tom and Arlene Norton for sharing this restaurant and evening with us.  

Sunday, November 30, 2008

WAHOO'S FISH TACO

WAHOO'S FISH TACO
HONOLULU, HAWAII


As most of you know, I will eat at any Mexican restaurant at least once.  From hole in the wall dives to national chains.  I try them all.  When Wahoo's came to Hawaii I was very excited.  Finally a taste of California Mexican food with Fish Tacos.  Boy was I surprised.  This place absolutely "sucks".  The absolute worst Mexican food you can buy.  Yuck and barf are words that come to mind when we eat here.  This is the most tasteless Mexican food on the planet.  Taco Bell and Jack in the Box tacos are much better.  I tried the fish taco.  This is a small piece of fish that is covered in cajun spices and thrown on two tortillas with some cabbage.  If there was sauce you could not taste it.  Bland...bland....bland.  The taquitos were not much better.  Deep fried tasteless chicken served with sour creme and frozen quacamole.  They don't even serve hot sauce for the taquitos.  To get some bland sauce you need to order chips and salsa for around $2.75.  The salsa has no taste and no heat.  My wife tried the chicken enchilada.  We could not tell what was in the thing.  Chicken or beef.  The chicken was covered in cajun spices and served in chunks.  Again terrible.  My daughter tried the Maui Bowl which is steak marinated in teriyaki sauce.  This was so dried out and tasteless that she would no eat it.  Not even two bites.  She did like the black beans.  I also liked the cajun spicy white beans.  The large burritos were being served all around us and they looked o.k.  This is one place that I will not re-visit again.  One of my worst food experiences since writing this blog.


Sunday, October 19, 2008

LA TAQUERIA DE RAMIRO

LA TAQUERIA DE RAMIRO
HONOLULU, HAWAII

I was working downtown this week with a rep from California.  We decided to get a quick lunch on Fort Street Mall across from Hawaii Pacific University.  We both saw a taco joint and said lets go.  La Taqueria De Ramiro serves up fast Mexican food at affordable prices.  I tried a carne asada taco and chicken tostada with beans and rice.  My friend had a beef burrito with beans and rice.  The carne asada taco was filled with Mexican rice and refried beans and a good bit of meat.  It was not what I expected and lacked flavor.  The tostada was large but the chicken tasted like it was just boiled in water with little or no seasoning.  The burrito was huge for around $6.  My friend loved it.  Not much here to make me want to return.  The people watching on Fort Street Mall was good.



MEXICO RESTAURANTE AUTENTICA COSINA

MEXICO RESTAURANTE
HONOLULU, HAWAII

I was excited when two visiting contractors from San Diego told me about a place they found in Honolulu that had great Mexican food.  Both of these guys said it was authentic and delicious.  We ventured to Mexico today.  It is located on North School Street which is a little bit out of the way for us.  When we entered we said "wow" this is the real deal Mexican place.  The chips and salsa soon came and we were ready for some authentic Mexican.  I ordered up a shredded chicken, shredded beef and carne asada taco with rice and beans.  My guest ordered a shrimp quesadilla, chicken enchilada and a carne asada taco with beans and rice.  The food arrived on huge plates covered with large portions of Mexican rice and refried beans.  I started  with the carne asada.  The taco is served on two corn tortillas because they are greasy.  I think they actually deep fried the steak.  The flavor was good but not great.  The chicken and beef tacos were kind of bland and also greasy.  The rice and beans were fine.  The shrimp quesadilla had a good amount of shrimp in it but it to was very greasy.  Actually dripping grease.  The chicken enchilada was served with a green salsa that was good.  We all left very full but disappointed in the flavors.  Not bold enough for our taste.  The atmosphere and service were great.  The menu here is large and includes all the standard Mexican fare.  There are a lot of seafood items such as Crab Enchiladas, Diablo Shrimp, Crab Rellenos, Shrimp Tacos, Scallop Tacos and Fish Tacos.  Also several salads and Fajitas.  I would like to return to try some other dishes before I write off this place.  


Saturday, October 18, 2008

IDETA JAPANESE RESTAURANT

IDETA JAPANESE RESTAURANT
HONOLULU, HAWAII

This little hole in the wall place located near my office is a great place for a nice Japanese lunch.  When a rep came in this week and asked for a sushi lunch, I took him to Ideta.  We didn't even look at the menu after the waitress told us about the daily specials.  Usually they have four specials that include some sort of sushi, tempura and fish served with miso soup, rice, pickled vegetables and sometimes a salad.  All three of us opted for the Ahi Tuna and Tempura Special ($16).  9 large pieces of raw tuna served on mounds of daikon radish.  The Tempura was two pieces of shrimp and some sweet potato.   All good and very filling.  The service was quick and efficient.  Tea and water refills came quickly and so did the food.  



Friday, October 17, 2008

GYOTAKU RESTAURANT


GYOTAKU RESTAURANT
HONOLULU, HAWAII

We ventured into Gyotaku last week for lunch.  The menu is well organized with pictures of all the dishes.  This makes it easy to choose from dozens of Japanese items.  They break the menu up with lunch specials, sushi and combinations.  We started with tortilla chips topped with raw tuna.  These were good but not great.  I tried the Ahi Poki-Don.  A huge bowl of raw tuna served over rice.  It comes with a nice salad and Miso soup for $9.95.
We also had the Gyotaku Combination Bento.  You can choose chicken, beef, salmon, sashimi, tempura, miso butter fish and more for $13.95.  This is also served with a nice salad an Miso soup.  The Teriyaki Chicken was good but they served it with the skin on.  I really like Gyotaku and will return many times to try the other menu items.  The service and attitude of the employees was great.

OKONOMIYAKI CHIBO

OKONOMIYAKI CHIBO
ROYAL HAWAIIAN SHOPPING CENTER
HONOLULU, HAWAII

Talk about getting lucky and finding a new great spot to eat.  I ended up at Okonomiyaki Chibo by accident.  We were going to eat at Restaurant Suntory to enjoy a Teppanyaki dinner.  When we arrived we were told the wait was 45 minutes to one hour.  Rather than wait, we walked down a few yards and found another Teppanyaki restaurant.  The hostess told us that the wait would be about 10-15 minutes so we grabbed four bar stools and enjoyed a cocktail.  The bartender had the worst attitude and personality in Hawaii.  How she could be in the service industry is beyond me.  Perhaps she was unfriendly because we were not all Japanese.  The entire restaurant is filled with Japanese  tourists and locals.  I don't think too many locals know this place exists.  In fact none of our party of four had ever heard of it.  I asked how long they have been in business and was told "17 Years".  I could not believe this but it was true.  Lucky for us the table was ready and we only had to stomach her for a few minutes.  We were seated at a comfortable Teppanyaki grille and quickly noticed that there were huge pancake type dishes being cooked on the grille.  Everyone was ordering these "pancakes" and other noodle dishes that looked great.  The pancakes are Japanese Okonomiyaki or Japanese pancakes.  The base batter is a mix of flour, egg, cabbage and grated mountain yam.  They are cooked table side on the Teppanyaki grille.   They are filled with different meats, vegetables or seafood and then topped with mayonnaise, Okonomiyaki sauce, seaweed and dried Bonito flakes.  We ordered ours with Kim Chee and Pork.  This thing was the bomb.  A fantastic dish that was devoured in minutes.  We also had a noodle dish that was awesome.  I cannot remember the name because it was Japanese.  We ordered two orders of the filet of beef and two orders of the grilled scallops for four people.  This was more than enough.  The beef and scallops are cooked table side and served with garlic flakes, mushrooms and onions.  Both were also delicious.  The meal includes Miso soup, salad and ice cream for desert.  The salad and Miso soup were both great.  I absolutely loved this place.  My friends said the same and all could not wait to return.  I am going back tomorrow to enjoy the pancakes again.  UPDATE: Went back again and the service and food were great again.  I highly recommend this place.  Note:  Check the daily special menu.  Last night they had Abalone and some Lettuce Cups with Pork and Vegetables that looked great.
Click link below to see an updated post on Okonomiyaki Chibo
http://greateatshawaii.blogspot.com/2013/01/chibo-teppanyaki-okonomiyaki-honolulu.html



Sunday, September 21, 2008

IMANAS SUSHI - IZAKAYA

IMANAS SUSHI IZAKAYA
HONOLULU, HAWAII

On the way to the Hawaii Womans Volleyball game last night we decided to try Imanas because it is right next to the University Of Hawaii and known for great Japanese food.  The last few times we tried this place we were turned away because we did not have a reservation.  This time we arrived at 5:20 p.m. (they open at 5:00) thinking we could sneak in.  As usual, we entered the place and were greeted loudly with a Japanese welcome.  The hostess asked if we had a reservation and we said "no".  She quickly reviewed the dining area and offered us three seats on the end of a table that had "reserved" signs all over it.  As we sat down I noticed that all the tables were reserved.  Lucky to get in in thought.  The menu includes sushi, seafood, chicken, steak and traditional Shabu Shabu where you cook various meats, vegetables and seafood at your table.  We started with their simple salad.  It was $3.50 but big enough to serve three people.  It is a good salad.  We also tried the Spicy Clams.  Served in a spicy broth that is great.  The clams were plump and big.  Delicious.  The Teriyaki Chicken was smothered in sauce and they did not remove the skin from the chicken.  It had good flavor and was served with a small salad and potato salad.  We enjoyed some fresh Ahi Sashimi, Miso Soup and Soy Beans to finish the meal.  As we finished the place began  to fill up fast.  The service was really good.  Can't wait to return to Imanas with a reservation next time.  They have a room in the back where you remove your shoes and sit on the floor.  Keli really wants to sit there.





Saturday, September 20, 2008

FRESH CATCH - HONOLULU, HI

FRESH CATCH
HONOLULU, HAWAII


We didn't know what to expect when we decided to try Fresh Catch on Waialae Avenue in Kaimuki.  The former Pizza Hut/Taco Bell spot has been transformed into something that sells fish.  Is it a restaurant, a deli or a fish monger?  Well once we entered  we found out that it is all of the above.  Fresh Catch sells fresh poke, sashimi, sandwiches and plate lunches.  You order at the large glass counter.  The guy behind the counter was great.  Once he found out it was our first time here, he quickly took us through the daily specials and regular menu items.  The Smoked Marlin Sandwich caught my eye first.  I asked how it was prepared and he said with a lot of mayo.  I told him about the Smoked Marlin Sandwiches I had enjoyed daily in Bali.  Smoked Marlin with horseradish, onion and capers served on a toasted bun.  He thought for a moment and said that he did not have horseradish but would come up with something for me.  And he delivered.  He took the Smoked Marlin and tossed it with creme cheese and wasabi and then topped it with lettuce, tomato, onion and capers.  This sandwich was delicious.  My wife took a bite and ended up eating half.  We also tried the Oxtail Soup.  Our friend had a crab sandwich which he said was just o.k.  The poke was great.  We tried garlic shrimp, limu ahi and spicy ahi.  Other menu items include a Hawaiian Plate, Beef Stew and Fresh Fish such as Mahi Mahi with Miso glaze and fresh Salmon.  There are three picnic tables in the restaurant so we took one and enjoyed  some BYOB cold brews.  This was a great place and not too expensive.  Sandwiches and plate lunches run around $6.  Poke is sold per pound.  I cannot wait to return to Fresh Catch and enjoy my special Marlin Sandwich again.  Photos from the Star Bulletin.


















Sunday, September 14, 2008

MCCORMICK & SCHMICK'S - PORTLAND OREGON










BEST HAPPY HOUR FOOD AND VALUE

The burger pictured here served with french fries is $1.95 during Happy Hour (3:00 to 6:00 pm).  It is a full 1/2 pound of beef and really good.  We enjoyed huge plates of Oregon Crawfish for $1.95.  Also Teriyaki Chicken Wings for $1.95.  These are regular size servings too.  For $3.95 you can enjoy Fish Tacos or an Antipasto Plate.  For $4.95 you can get three amazing Kobe Beef Mini Burgers with Cheddar Cheese, Bacon and Caramelized Onion.  The Kobe burgers are awesome.  Moist and full of flavor.  We also tried the Slow Roasted and Smoked Pork Ribs served with Red Cabbage and Corn Slaw for $4.95.  This food is really good and very affordable.  You must sit in the bar area to get these great prices.  The service was excellent too.  We liked McCormick & Schmick's so much that we went back the next night and enjoyed some salad and seafood.  The menu is amazing and filled with fresh fish from all over the world.  I tried the steamed clams along with some Minnestrone Soup and Bib Lettuce Salad.  All were excellent.  My friend enjoyed a Beet Salad and an order of fresh Ahi Sashimi.  Everything was good.  This is a great restaurant located right on the river in Downtown Portland.  I highly recommend the place for Happy Hour and dinner.  Cannot wait to return.

PADDY'S PUB - PORTLAND OREGON

PADDY'S PUB 
PORTLAND, OREGON

Walking around downtown Portland we stumbled into a nice Irish Pub called Paddy's.  The waitress highly recommended that we try the Fish Tacos.  Yes Fish Tacos in an Irish pub.  Why not we said. It took awhile but the taco's arrived looking great.  Three good size flour tortillas filled with a battered fish and covered with cabbage, cheese and salsa.  Also comes with Beans and Rice.  The tacos were really good.  I could only knock down two but my friend ate four.  These were really good fish tacos.  Good flavor and presentation.


OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY - RESER STADIUM

RESER STADIUM
OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY

This was by far the worst tailgate and fans I have ever witnessed at a college football game.  The Beavers have no spirit or Aloha.  The tailgating is weak.  Really weak.  The stadium was o.k.  The lines for the bathroom and snacks are long.  Even if we would have won the game, I still would rate this as probably the most boring tailgaters and fans on earth.






























HAWAII VS OREGON STATE















UNIVERSITY OF HAWAII VS OREGON STATE BEAVERS
RESER STADIUM - UNIVERSITY OF OREGON

This was a road trip that I can't wait to forget.  Hawaii was terrible.  No offense.  No defense.  No special teams.  There were no bright spots.  Score was something like 45 to 7.  Sitting in the stands was brutal.  

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

OLD HICKORY STEAKHOUSE AT GAYLORD PALMS


OLD HICKORY STEAKHOUSE
GAYLORD PALMS
ORLANDO, FLORIDA

After a very long day at Disney World we arrived back at our hotel around 9:30 p.m.  Hot, sweaty and wearing our shorts.  I asked the Concierge at the hotel what options we had in the hotel.  He politely brought out three different menus for the different restaurants in the hotel.  He said it was late but we should try the Steakhouse.  We ran over to the hostess desk and were quickly greeted by a nice hostess.  I asked if they would seat us for dinner and she said "absolutely".  She walked us to the table and asked how our day was going.  Small talk but a nice surprise.  We were seated and then approached by one of two waiters that would take care of our table.  Water and bread came too.  Then a nice glass of wine.  I ordered the Heirloom tomato and Vidalia Onion Salad.  Normally served with a Maytag Blue Cheese dressing I requested a balsamic dressing.  The waitress said no problem.  The salad ($10) was fantastic.  Great tomato flavor with onions that were not too overpowering.  The balsamic was delicious.  Shirley enjoyed the Lobster Bisque soup.  It was also terrific.  For dinner I enjoyed the signature 100% grass-fed cattle beef tenderloin, center cut.  At $40 this better be great.  It was.....cooked to perfection.  It cut like butter and melted in my mouth.  Shirley's Porterhouse Steak was a huge 24 ounce cut ($37).  It was a great cut of meet and perfectly cooked.  Only complaint is that it was over salted.  I tasted it and agreed.  We also tried the Steamed Asparagus with Hollandaise Sauce($8) and Sauteed Wild Mushrooms ($7).  The mushrooms were good but greasy.  All in all this was a great meal with great service.  Would love to go back again.

BONEFISH GRILL - GAINESVILLE, FLORIDA

BONEFISH GRILL
GAINESVILLE, FLORIDA

The front desk clerk at our hotel highly recommended the Bonefish Grill.  We decided to try the place since it was close to the hotel.  We arrived the evening of Game Day and found that there was a forty minute wait.  Since the bar area was packed we joined a dozen other people that were sitting outside.  We were quickly greeted by a waitress (outside) that offered us drinks.  A nice glass of red wine would be nice I said.  The wine came quickly along with a soda and water for the family.  Wow....what great service and we have not been seated yet.  After a few minutes another waitress came outside with a platter of shrimp appetizers.  They were served to everyone waiting.  No charge.  We were seated by the hostess and then immediately greeted by our server.  Everyone that worked at Bonefish was very friendly.  The menu includes Wood-Grilled Fish, steaks, chicken and pasta dishes.  We opted to begin the meal with a fresh Ceviche and the Saucy Shrimp that was served for free outside.  The Ceviche was mostly small scallops and was pretty tasteless.  The saucy shrimp were sauteed in a lime tomato garlic sauce with Kalamata olives and Feta cheese ($8).  This was good.  We tried the Chilean Sea Bass ($22) and Gulf Grouper ($19) with a warm mango salsa.  Both served with fresh vegetables.  The Grouper was better than the Sea Bass but both were good.  I give the Bonefish Grill high marks.  They were super busy the night we were there yet the service and attitude was excellent.















GAME DAY - UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA VS HAWAII

UNIVERSITY OF HAWAII VS FLORIDA
GAME DAY AT THE SWAMP

Game day started back at the Swamp Restaurant.  We arrived early before the big crowds and got a nice table overlooking the street.  They don't serve breakfast at the Swamp so you get the lunch menu.  I enjoyed a delicious Shrimp Wrap.  Others had mostly fried food.  The Bloody Mary was terrible but the atmosphere of game day and location make this a great spot.  We left the Swamp and headed to the real Swamp where they play football.  Along the way several Gator tailgaters invited us in and served us cold beer and more food.  The fans were great even though we were what they call Gator Bait.  We entered the Swamp and were amazed that it seated 90,000 fans.  Looks a lot smaller.  As game time came closer, the clouds moved in and then the rain.  Huge raindrops pelted us until we were soaked.  Then came the sunshine and hot humid weather that made you feel sick.  The Swamp began to stink like a real swamp and it was miserable.  We took haven in the shade above our seat section.  As the score got worse for Hawaii fans we bagan to walk around the stadium and just take in the experience.  It was great despite the 56-10 loss to Florida.

WE MADE IT ALL THE WAY TO THE SWAMP!
90,000 FANS AND A FEW HUNDRED CHEERING FOR HAWAII
HAWAII COACH GREG MC MACKIN READY TO RUMBLE
HAWAII CAME TO PLAY BUT LOST BIG
PRE GAME AT THE SWAMP RESTAURANT

PRE GAME - UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA VS HAWAII

HAWAII VS FLORIDA
GAME DAY IN GAINESVILLE

The local Gainesville affiliate for ABC News interviews Hawaii fans Drew and Aldrin.  We cruised the city of Gainesville in our rental car decked out with University of Hawaii stickers and flags.  

WE WERE A LITTLE OUT OF PLACE WITH OUR HAWAII GEAR IN GAINESVILLE
THE LOCAL NEWS WANTED TO INTERVIEW SOME HAWAII FANS

WAFFLE HOUSE PART 2

WAFFLE HOUSE PART TWO
2:00 A.M. GAME DAY

After a great night at the Swamp Bar we finally decided to go back to the hotel.  There was a quick stop that had to be made first.  The Waffle House.
Forget the low fat diet.  Forget the calories.  Forget the side effects of the Alli diet.  We dove into a bowl of chili and a beef patty melt.  The chili was awesome and the patty melt was the best ever.  This was worthy of a culinary award.  Please note this was 2:00 in the morning after about a dozen beers.  

THE SWAMP RESTAURANT

THE SWAMP RESTAURANT
GAINESVILLE, FLORIDA

This is "the" place for Florida football fans.  An indoor/outdoor bar that rocks with Gator fever.  Located directly across from Florida University and only minutes from the stadium, the Swamp is a local institution.  We found ourselves in the thick of the party on the Friday before game day.  As the night progressed the party got better and better.  Students, fans, Alumni and two crazy guys from Hawaii enjoyed cold beer, a few shots and a lot of laughter.  We spent the early part of the evening on the outside deck in front of the bar.  Several beer stands made it easy to acquire a cold beverage without waiting in line inside.  The staff was very friendly and often gave us free "Beat Hawaii" stickers.  This is a great place to party before the game.  

ME AND MU BUDDY LIKED THE SOUTHERN BELLS
















Friday, August 29, 2008

UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA

UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
GAINESVILLE, FLORIDA

Wow......you have got to see this University to believe it. It is huge and beautiful. I mean really big and really beautiful. The place is so big you can get lost. It is a small city unto itself. We ventured through campus like we were students. We went to the campus center and bought drinks and then sat in the main square and enjoyed the sights. The fact that we were wearing Hawaii shirts and hats didn't bother anyone. The football stadium "Swamp" is located right on campus. There is no parking lot. How they get 90,000 people in the place is amazing. We went to the stadium today. It looks like an office building from the outside. There is a small museum that leads to the ultra plush football offices. We got to see Tim Tebow's Heismann Trophy and the 2006 National Champion Trophy along with lots of pictures and other trophy's that Florida has won. This is a big time sports university with a great history. The fans here are not as fanatical as Alabama. I expected parties and tailgateing on Thursday and Friday like Alabama. Not here. There is very little happening. Last night was a dud and so was today. I brought the family because I thought it would be like the Alabama experience. Hopefully things will pick up tonight. It is difficult to know where to go in this town and the place is spread out. In Alabama you have two or three places where everyone goes to party. There will be a University of Hawaii party tonight at our hotel. Lots of old boosters wearing green shirts. My goodness I am one of them.

UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA

























WAFFLE HOUSE




WAFFLE HOUSE
GAINESVILLE, FLORIDA

I have eaten at the Waffle House (Awful Waffle) many times in Atlanta and during our trip to Alabama. Normally around 1:00 in the morning after drinking. This time I took the family for breakfast so they could experience the Waffle for themselves. Waffle House's are all over the South. They are an institution. Small diners where you sit at the counter or booths that are on the cooking line. How to maintain my diet here would be tough. Waffles, eggs with cheese, hashbrowns, steak and hamburger dominate the breakfast menu. While my family went for the chocolate waffles and breakfast burritos, I enjoyed egg whites served with tomatos and one slice of wheat toast. This was really good for $3.00. My girls loved the waffles and burritos too. Everyone must try the Waffle House once in their lives.

CHIPOTLE MEXICAN GRILL




CHIPOTLE MEXICAN GRILL
Gainesville, Florida
We don't have Chipotle Mexican Grill in Hawaii so I really wanted to try this place. We passed a Chipotle directly across from the University of Florida twice on this trip. Both times the lines were so long we decided not to go in. As we were driving back to our hotel we saw that there was another Chipotle right near our hotel. We ventured in and there was a very short line. The menu is very simple. You choose either a burrito, fajita burrito, burrito bowl, tacos or salad with chicken, steak, carnitas, barbacoa or vegetarian fillings. Then you go down the line and add whatever topping and salsa you like. Every dish is around $6.00. We ordered soft tacos with chicken, barbacoa and steak. I topped mine with hot salsa, lettuce and just a tiny bit of cheese. My wife went for the quacamole and lots of cheese. The barbacoa is a spicy shredded naturally raised beef braised in chipotle adobo, cumin, cloves, garlic and oregeno. The steak taco uses a cubed beef that is marinated for hours in chipotle adobo and then grilled. The chicken tacos are naturally raised, vegetarian fed chicken that is marinated in chipotle pepper, adobo and then grilled. All of the tacos were great. You get three tacos per order and can mix or match them. There were alot of burritos being served. They are huge. By the time we got through the short line dozen of people including the University of Pacific Volleyball team were all waiting in line. This place rocks. It is only a matter of time before you see the Chipotle Grill in your neigborhood and hopefully Hawaii.

UPDATE 5/4/14

CHIPOTLE MEXICAN GRILL
BALTIMORE, MARYLAND

CHIPOTLE MEXICAN GRILL
3201 ST. PAUL STREET
BALTIMORE, MD  21218
410-662-1701
Note:  There are no Chipotle's in Hawaii

Finally made it back to Chipotle after many years.  I did a blog on Chipotle way back and did not even have pictures.  That blog has received tons of hits and may be in the top ten of all time on my blog hits.  This time I snapped some photos.  Chipotle is a super successful chain that has a cult like following.  Their stock has been on fire for years and now is around $500 per share.  Hard to believe this when you enter one of their stores.  It is pretty simple stuff with basic tacos, burritos and bowls.  Not many selections but all top quality ingredients and fresh.  They can rock out a custom burrito for you in seconds so it is FAST AND FRESH!  I went with a Steak Burrito ($6.84).  Once you order the meat, you can add beans and rice.  After that the guy slides your burrito over to another person who adds sides like salsa, guacamole, sour creme, lettuce and cheese.  I threw it all in along with the "hot" sauce.  The burrito was heavy and rolled into almost a ball.  I added Chips n' Salsa to my meal for $2.13.  A small drink set me back $1.66.  So all in this lunch was around $11.  The burrito was FANTASTIC.  I could only finish half during our visit but took the other half back to the hotel and enjoyed it later that evening.  Every ingredient in the burrito can be tasted because it is fresh.  There are no Chipotle's in Hawaii but boy I wish there was!

CHIPOTLE MEXICAN GRILL 
PRETTY BASIC AND CLEAN DINING AREA
ORDER - PICK UP AND PAY AT THE COUNTER
CHOOSE FROM STEAK, CHICKEN OR CARNITAS AND ADD BEANS/RICE IF YOU LIKE
CHOOSE TOPPINGS - SALSA, CORN, SOUR CREME, CHEESE, GUACAMOLE, LETTUCE, CILANTRO
SIDE ORDER OF CHIPS N' SALSA.  THERE ARE MORE CHIPS IN THE BAG 
CHIPOTLE BURRITO
LARGE BURRITO THAT HAS SOME SERIOUS WEIGHT TO IT
STEAK, BEANS, RICE, CORN, HOT SALSA, LETTUCE, CHEESE AND CILANTRO IN THIS BABY