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Sunday, June 25, 2017

CAFE LANI REVISITED

CAFE LANI
ALA MOANA SHOPPING CENTER
1450 ALA MOANA BLVD
MALL LEVEL 2, EWA WING
HONOLULU, HI  96814
808-955-5599
HOURS:  Daily 6:30 AM - 10:00 PM

Cruising Ala Moana Shopping Center with my girls and we decided to try Cafe Lani again.  Our first visit was just after the restaurant opened so we wanted to see if anything had changed.  One thing that did not change is the wait.  It took a little over 30 minutes to get a table around noon and when we did get seated it was at a communal table sandwiched in-between two other parties.  I am not into the communal dining thing and don't like talking to strangers and having them look over everything we do.  I was guilty of looking at them too.  Seemed the Japanese people next to us had a set menu that was not on the menu.  A nice piece of fish, bowl of pasta and dessert.  Probably should have asked our waiter what they were ordering but the guy was pretty much worthless.  He did refill water and bring the food but he had the personality and friendliness of a snake.  Cannot understand how people like this get jobs in high volume restaurants.  We waited a bit to get a small piece of bread served with butter, chocolate sauce, berries and olive oil.  The bread here is good and the menu states it is unlimited.  We had maybe three pieces served during the course of the meal and the breads are fresh, warm and delicious.  I especially liked the berry sauce with the croissant.  We started with the Ajillo appetizer ($12).  This Shrimp, Potato and Mushroom was served boiling in oil.  My first bite of the potato burned my upper mouth and the skin came off.  Nobody at the table understood this dish.  It was a bowl of boiling oil.  Kind of hard to eat this with the bread but I managed to place a mushroom, potato and mushroom on the bread.  This dish went untouched  and I would never order it again.
The Steamed Clams in White Wine ($14.50) was delicious.  Lots of sweet baby clams in a light broth.  Only thing missing was some bread to dip into the sauce.  Everyone at the table enjoyed the Clams.  The Japanese Style Bolognese ($19.50) was really good and included a lot of seasoned beef.  The Lani Mix Paella ($25.25) was ordered without Mussels so they gave me additional Shrimp and Clams.  This dish was tasteless and tasted nothing like Paella.  After just a few bites we threw in the towel on this dish and then packed it up to take home.  Nobody ate it at home either.  The Grilled Lemon Chicken ($18.50) was covered in a Lemon Pesto type sauce.  Actually thought this was ok and our friend finished the entire plate.  The Special Spicy Chicken Plate ($25) was just alright and my Wife said she would not reorder this.  The Chicken was pretty spicy and served with a small pizza that tasted like the frozen ones from the market.  The Clam Chowder was really good and packed with clam flavor.  We all loved the desserts.  Chocolate Parfait ($10.50).  Chocolate and Vanilla Ice Cream with Whipped Cream, Oreo Cookies, Hershey's Chocolate and crunchy cereal on the bottom.
The Cheesecake Tower Parfait ($13.50) was also excellent.  Loved the fresh berries and flavors of this dessert.  Cafe Lani is good but a bit expensive for lunch.  Presentations and portions are good but seems everything on the menu is topped with Arugula which I don't understand.
Click link below for previous post on Cafe Lani;
OPEN KITCHEN AT CAFE LANI PUTS ON A GOOD SHOW
BAKERY IS BUSY MAKING THOSE DELICIOUS BREADS
FULL BAR WITH A GREAT COFFEE BREWING SYSTEM
LARGE COMMUNAL TABLE DOWN THE MIDDLE OF THE RESTAURANT
CAFE LANI MENU















OLIVE OIL, BERRIES, CHOCOLATE AND BUTTER
ASSORTED BREADS BROUGHT TO TABLES IN BASKETS
THESE WERE GREAT WITH THE BERRIES
STEAMED CLAMS IN WHITE WINE
AJILLO WITH POTATOES, MUSHROOMS AND SHRIMP
THE AJILLO PLACED ON BREAD
JAPANESE STYLE BOLOGNESE
LEMON CHICKEN
PAELLA
SPICY CHICKEN LUNCH SET WITH CLAM CHOWDER AND MINI PIZZA
SPICY CHICKEN
MINI PIZZA
CLAM CHOWDER
CHOCOLATE PARFAIT
CHEESECAKE PARFAIT

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