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Sunday, April 24, 2016

DORAKU

DORAKU
1009 KAPIOLANI BLVD
HONOLULU, HI  96814
808-591-0101
HOURS:  Monday thru Thursday 11:00 AM - 12:00 AM
                 Friday and Saturday 11:00 AM - 1:00 AM

Had to put up another post on Doraku on Kapiolani.  Once again a great meal that left us all very full and very happy.  Doraku which translated means the road or path to pleasure was exactly that.  Pure pleasure enjoying some of my favorite foods.  Always start with the Hamachi Carpaccio ($13.50)  The thin slices of fish with slices of JalapeƱo and Red and Green Onion is so light and literally melts in your mouth.  The Ponzu Sauce and Chili Oil add layers of flavor that make this dish disappear in seconds.  Next up is one of my favorite dishes.  Hamachi Kama ($15.95) which is the fish cheek grilled and served with Ponzu Sauce and Chili Daikon Radish.  We pour the Ponzu Sauce over the cheek and spread the Radish over it too.  Then dig into the firm white fish that is so delicious.  The crispy skin adds more flavor and texture.  There is quite a bit of fish on the bone.   More than you would expect.  So delicious.  Yummy!!!!  The Pork Belly Yaki Soba ($11.95) with cubes of Pork Belly, Soba Noodles, Cabbage, Mushrooms and soft boiled egg was delicious.  Loved the egg over the noodles.  My Daughter loved the Miso Soup which was served with the Pork Belly Yaki Soba as a lunch entree.  The God of Fire Roll ($12.50) is one of my favorite sushi rolls with its spicy Ahi, JalapeƱo and Habanero Tobiko.  Great flavors and a nice kick of heat.  The Shogun Roll ($13.50) was so fresh and delicious that my eyes rolled with each bite.  The Crab and Avocado with a hint of crispy garlic is amazing.  I could eat this every single day.  The Brownie Tempura ($7.50) is nice but I don't like fried brownies.  Would prefer a non-Tempura Brownie but the ice cream was delicious.  All of my reviews of Doraku are the same.  Great food and one of my favorite places to eat.  Great service on this day from Stephanie who was busy with a lot of tables but always had time to check on us, smile and make sure we were happy.  
Click links below for previous posts on Doraku;

DORAKU ON KAPIOLANI
ENTRANCE TO DORAKU WHERE YOU WILL FIND INDOOR AND OUTDOOR SEATING
DORAKU IS THE ROAD TO FOOD HAPPINESS
LOVE THE LOOK AND FEEL OF DORAKU
NICE BAR WHERE YOU CAN ENJOY A DRINK AND THE FULL MENU
LOVE THE DECOR
THE HISTORY OF DORAKU
DORAKU MENU




DORAKU PLACE SETTING
DORAKU - THE ROAD OR PATH TO HAPPINESS
WATER SERVED IN BOTTLES
HAMACHI CARPACCIO
MISO SOUP
HAMACHI KAMA WITH PONZU SAUCE
HAMACHI KAMA
THE HAMACHI CHEEK IS FILLED WITH DELICIOUS WHITE MEAT
PORK BELLY YAKI SOBA
PORK BELLY, SOBA NOODLES AND EGG
GOD OF FIRE ROLL (FRONT) - SHOGUN ROLL (BACK)
GOD OF FIRE ROLL
SHOGUN ROLL
BROWNIE TEMPURA

LUCY'S LAB CREAMERY

LUCY'S LAB CREAMERY
435 KAMAKEE STREET
HONOLULU, HI  96814
HOURS:  Monday thru Thursday 11:30 AM - 9:30 PM
                 Friday 11:30 AM - 10:30 PM
                 Saturday 10:30 AM - 10:30 PM
                 Sunday 10:30 AM - 9:00 PM

I must have passed Lucy's Lab Creamery dozens of times over the past year while driving down Kamakee Street.  Always have wanted to pop in and see what this place is all about.  Finally had the chance one evening so we found parking and entered to find two happy and smiling employees who were serving up scoops to a small group of people.  We looked at the display case on the right side of the counter and were quite surprised to see Corn, Nutella, Honey Lavender and Cola flavors to name a few. The gals at the counter quickly asked us if we would like to try any flavors.  "Is this all you have I asked?"  I was feeling maybe Mint Chocolate or Rocky Road.  The girl explained that these are the flavors for the month and that they can change monthly.  I went for a standard cone and one scoop of Brownie Batter Ice Cream.  They charge by the ounce so when they make your scoop you can tell them to go larger or smaller or add additional scoops.  My scoop cost around $4.  I liked the consistency of the ice cream and the flavor was just ok.  Corn and Lavender Ice Cream does not appeal to me so I think Baskin Robbins is still my "go to" ice cream place.  My Daughter loved her Nutella scoop with Fruit Loops and Sprinkles.  I like this place because it is a small business that is bringing something different to Hawaii.  Who can complain about a cute little boutique creamery in the heart of Honolulu.  Love it!

LUCY'S LAB CREAMERY ON KAMAKEE STREET

SMALL LITTLE ICE CREAM SHOP
 DISPLAY CASE SHOWS WHAT IS AVAILABLE THAT DAY

SCOOPS ARE $1 PER OUNCE
PICK YOUR CONE - SIZE - FLAVOR - TOPPINGS
PAN LE CREME
ICE CREAM WRAPPED IN SWEET BREAD
FLAVORS ARE OFF THE WALL DIFFERENT
THIS IS REALLY AN ICE CREAM LAB
I WAS NOT FEELING CORN ICE CREAM ON THIS NIGHT
ONE SCOOP OF BROWNIE BATTER ICE CREAM FOR ME.  THE WEIGH IN WAS ABOUT 4 OUNCES
BROWNIE BATTER SCOOP
NUTELLA ICE CREAM WITH FRUIT LOOPS AND SPRINKLES

Saturday, April 23, 2016

TREETOPS RESTAURANT

TREETOPS RESTAURANT
3737 MANOA ROAD
HONOLULU, HI  96822
808-988-6839
HOURS:  Daily 9:00 AM - 4:00 PM

After being closed for a year, Treetops Restaurant reopened under the direction of a new Chef who honed his skills at Roy's Restaurant and Tiki's Grill and Bar.  Decided to go back into Manoa Valley and give the place a try.  I love the valley even on rainy days like this one.  What I remember about Treetops during my visit here in 2009 was an old worn out restaurant that looked like a dining hall.  Thought I would walk in and see a remarkable makeover that transformed this beautiful location into something worthy of the valley.  Surprised to see that it looked pretty much the same.  What was different though was the service on this day.  Greeted by a smiling hostess that offered us indoor or outdoor seating and then served by a great waitress named Tina.  We checked out the buffet which at $15.95 is a steal in Hawaii but opted to order off the menu.  I went with Manoa's Best Shrimp Plate ($13) with the Burning Tree House (very spicy) sauce.  Not bad.  I liked the sauce and the fact that it was all over the rice too.  Heat level was a bit lower than I expected.  Served with fresh greens.
My Daughter went for the Chicken Wings ($9) which are served with thin and crispy French Fries.  We both liked the fries.  The Chicken Wings were also pretty good.  Kind of thick breading and they packed a nice punch of heat.  The Wings were hotter than we expected.  Again not bad.  What was great was the service as our waitress and a helper returned to the table multiple times to fill our waters and ask if everything was ok.  We had waited a few minutes for our food and our waitress (Tina) brought over a small bowl of fruit and apologized for the wait.  Did not seem like a long wait to me but we accepted the fruit and loved it.  Fresh Pineapple, Strawberries, Cantaloup and Oranges.  Perfect appetizer to sit back enjoy while looking at all of the trees.  So nice to sit outside with the rain coming down and cool breeze flowing over us.  Just a nice place to be.  After lunch we walked downstairs and discovered a small snack shop, gift shop and seating area that was filled with some amazing Hawaiian paintings.  Highly recommend you stop in and view the artwork.  I like Treetops but just wish someone could do a makeover on the place and give it an update that would truly take advantage of the valley views and make this place a destination for tourists and locals alike.
Click link below to view previous post on Treetops Restaurant;

TREETOPS IS TUCKED AWAY IN THE BEAUTIFUL MANOA VALLEY
FOLLOW THE SIGNS TO TREETOPS PARKING LOT
PARKING LOT LEADS TO UPPER ENTRANCE AND BRIDGE
TREETOPS PARKING LOT IS FREE TO RESTAURANT GUESTS



ENTRANCE TO TREETOPS
WALK OVER THE BRIDGE 
VIEW FROM THE BRIDGE.  THE LOWER PARKING LOT CHARGES $10 AND IS MOSTLY FOR HIKERS
VIEW FROM THE BRIDGE
TREETOPS IN MY MIND NEEDS A MAKEOVER
HOSTESS STAND AT TREETOPS
FULL SERVICE BAR
PLACE LOOKS LIKE A DINING HALL
VERY SIMPLE DINING AREA BUT BRIGHT AND CLEAN
COVERED OUTDOOR PATIO SEATING IS BEST TO ME
LOVED THE VIEW FROM OUR OUTDOOR TABLE
BEAUTIFUL MANOA
TREETOPS MENU
TREETOPS BREAKFAST
LOUNGE AND LUNCH MENU.   THE LUNCH BUFFET IS $15.95
ACAI BOWLS
SPECIALTY BEVERAGES
OUR GREAT WAITRESS BROUGHT US SOME FRESH FRUIT FOR WAITING
BUFFALO CHICKEN WINGS
MANOA'S BEST SHRIMP PLATE - BURNING TREE HOUSE STYLE
 THE $15.95 BUFFET

 BUFFET INCLUDES FRESH FRUITS

FISH, CHICKEN LONG RICE AND OTHER HOT ENTREES IN BUFFET
WALK DOWNSTAIRS TO THE GIFT SHOP
SMALL GIFT SHOP AND STORE
RAINBOW'S END STORE
NA MAKANA AT PARADISE PARK GIFT SHOP
THE HAWAIIAN PAINTINGS CAUGHT MY EYE - THEY ARE BEAUTIFUL