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Where the locals eat

Kathryn nailed it. (Kudos to you Kathryn!)
The only thing I will add is Bobbies in Hanapepe for local plate lunch...awesome serving sizes, great food.
For Vietnamese, Pho Kauai in Lihue, and Pho Kapaa in Kapaa.
For Thai..as of July 4, Island Palm in Kapaa is now a Thai restaurant at night. The folks that owned The King and I have taken it over, and producing Kauai's favorite Thai cuisine.

Jul 13, 2015
wabi in Hawaii
1

Stainless Steel Spatula recommendation

I own one of the Ti spats, The maker is a good friend of mine, as is the owner of Eating Tools, so I do have a bias. The maker, Mike Draper is quite an accomplished knife maker. His wife is Audra Draper who is an ABS Mastersmith.

That said, the Ti spatula works wonderfully. That it is light weight and rust proof in the salt laden corrosive atmosphere here in Hawaii is just an added bonus

Jun 20, 2015
wabi in Cookware

Stainless Steel Spatula recommendation

How about a Titanium spatula?

https://www.eatingtools.com/spatulas/...

Jun 19, 2015
wabi in Cookware

Shopping for carbon steel chef's knife: Gyutos, bunkas, brands on a budget, and how to choose?

Cowboyardee...thank you for your response. Would you be so kind as to answer a few more questions? I too am a lefty, and pretty much hopelessly. I also have a minor knife fetish, and spend a fair amount of time looking for kitchen knives that I can use with my sinister hand. I've got a few of Murray Carter's and Shosui Takeda's knives as they both are dual ground. I was under the impression that most of the Sakai Yusuke knives were dual 50/50 ground except for the Funayuki . Did you buy yours from Keiichi, aka BluewayJapan on baby? Any other US sources?

When you say you had it made in a lefty configuration...did they do more than give you a bevel of 50/50? Change the handle to make it more comfortable?

I am curious as I am really considering purchasing one of the 240 gyutos as well.

Thank you for your thoughts on this...

May 13, 2015
wabi in Cookware

Harvard class cooks up the ultimate BBQ smoker - The Boston Globe

And next to it... a Big Green Egg.

May 10, 2015
wabi in Cookware

What pieces am I missing?

I can't live without a wok. 14 inch, carbon steel. Flat or round bottom depending on your preference. I have an electric stove, so my woks are flat bottomed.

Shopping for carbon steel chef's knife: Gyutos, bunkas, brands on a budget, and how to choose?

Chem...interesting you brought up that Sakai Yusuke knife. I've long thought of purchasing one of those...

Paging Cowboyardee! How is that Sakai Yusuke doing? Any regrets? Would you buy it again? Did you buy the 240 gyuto?

May 10, 2015
wabi in Cookware

Why is it so difficult to find a bread knife?

The MAC looks like a winner.

Mar 28, 2015
wabi in Cookware

Advice for restaurants in Kauai

I live on Kauai.

I will and I do drive all over the island to eat. I dont like driving all over the place at night..but that is because I start work before the sun comes up and go to bed early. The drivers that scare me the most are visitors who are too busy site seeing or reading their tour guides while driving.

The truth be told the majority of fatal accidents are NOT on the north shore. The accidents that occur there are usually low velocity, a side effect of same said twisty roads. Sadly our fatal MVAs occur between Lihue and Kapaa near the Wailua golf course, near Halfway bridge heading to the west side, and on the road to Koloa aka the Tunnel of Trees. One only has to look at the family erected memorials in those places to get an idea.

No, Kauai is not a food destination. We dont want to be. Kauai wants to be the Garden Island and to be life in the slow lane. From the sleepy west side to the end of the road at Ke'e beach there is a plethora of great food to be enjoyed. I think the food here could be be described as sublime. It matches the island...subtle in its beauty.

I travel a bit, and I like good food. I've spent evenings at Le Bernadin, Taillevent, L'ami Louis and Peter Lugers. But when I get back from a trip, the things I look forward to are Hamura's saimin, some poke from Ara's in Hanamaulu, and dinner prepared by my good friend Jean Marie Josselin.

Yes I am biased. Kauai is my home, and I'd be more than happy eating here the rest of my life.

Mar 06, 2015
wabi in Hawaii
2

Advice for restaurants in Kauai

Becca...
Kathryn nailed pretty much everything. The only thing I might add is The Hanalei Gourmet for lunch...

Enjoy your stay here.

Feb 28, 2015
wabi in Hawaii

Vietnamese garlic noodles

Yeah...but you gotta admit, it is pretty tasty.

Feb 26, 2015
wabi in Home Cooking

Needed: One REALLY special meal near Princeville

JO2 or Hukilau Lanai would both work for a birthday dinner.

Feb 24, 2015
wabi in Hawaii

Kauai: The Feral Pig Pub & Diner in Lihue

One of my coworkers husband is a chef at Red Salt...I'll ask about things. Sorry you were side lined with the flu, I would have been willing to deliver Hamura's saimin to your hotel room if you were that sick!

About the Feral Pig...I REALLY was excited about them when they opened, and thought "Wow! They get it!", but sadly the detailed implementation of the plan just wasn't there.

It's been a while since I was there last...I should go and give them another chance.

Feb 21, 2015
wabi in Hawaii

Kauai: The Feral Pig Pub & Diner in Lihue

Melanie:
Aloha, and welcome to Kauai! I am glad you enjoyed your breakfast at the Feral Pig. I have not been there for breakfast, and have only gone for lunch there. I was very excited when they first opened, as I was excited about their farm to table enthusiasm, as well as making so many of their ingredients in house. I have to say I was a bit disappointed. Having been there several times for lunch, I ordered the off menu Feral Burger each time. Each time my burger has arrived pretty much flaccid...as if it had been cooked earlier, and then just reheated. The same was true for the bun..it was as if it had been in a steam tray or something. Disappointed, I have not returned in at least 6 months. I guess I should try their breakfast, and give them another chance.

Enjoy your stay here, and certainly let us know of any other treats you discover. If I can be of any assistance...let me know. I can certainly let you know some of my favorites.

Feb 13, 2015
wabi in Hawaii

Best Island for Eating / Honeymooning?

Chestnut...I have to agree with UES Mayor and Beachchick but play devil's advocate. Oahu is our densest, most populated island, and is the business hub of the eastern Pacific Rim. It has, hand's down, the most to offer as far as variety because of sheer volume. Maui would come in second because it is a long established tourist destination in Hawaii. Quite simply most of Maui is built to attract tourists. There are certainly some great culinary outposts to be found there.

What about the Big Island and Kauai? For a honeymoon, they can't be beat for the beauty and privacy. There are some very romantic accommodations, and I would venture to say that some real food gems can be found for your stay there.

I live on Kauai so I am biased, and have my favorites here. The Big Island has a wonderful palate of chefs and offerings as well, along with the scenic beauty that the Biggest Hawaiian island offers.

If you want to chose your honeymoon venue primarily around food...then Oahu and Maui are your choices. If you're willing to explore, and want to see the beauty that is Hawaii, consider the Big Island and Kauai. You won't regret it.

Aloha, and have a wonderful trip!

Feb 04, 2015
wabi in Hawaii
1

Waiting for the brown van

I'm very jealous. I have lusted after that pan for some time now. High fives!

Feb 02, 2015
wabi in Cookware
1

2 weeks on Kauai

Notfatfrank:
Aloha.
I am glad you enjoyed your visit. It truly is a special place. By all means come back.

Feb 02, 2015
wabi in Hawaii

Kauai: Cakes by Kristin in Kapa'a closing soon

I'm looking forward to Street Burger. While there are some popular burger spots on Kauai, they are by in large tourist attractions and fall short in quality and consistency. Even with the hype and press The Feral Pig's "Feral Burger" is hit or miss. I've ordered more than one there only to be served a burger that was obviously previously cooked and limply reheated. Great idea, poor execution.

A great burger joint on the east side will be a very welcome addition indeed. There are some occasions when only a good burger will do

I wish them well.

Jan 25, 2015
wabi in Hawaii

Kauai: Portuguese Sausage

Melanie...I went to their webpage, and then their Facebook page....and......they went out of business in October.

Bummers!

Jan 14, 2015
wabi in Hawaii

Gluten-free (rice noodle) saimin on Kauai?

Melanie...I have not been to the Kauai Ramen place. I thought about mentioning it when I posted, but everyone I have talked to who has been to it said it was absolutely horrible. If you give it a try while you are here, let me know.

Jan 14, 2015
wabi in Hawaii

Gluten-free (rice noodle) saimin on Kauai?

Melanie.. Hamura's is the stalwart on Kauai. It is offered on the menu at some local restaurants most notably at the TipTop cafe in Lihue. There is a another saimin place in Lihue, Kako's Saimin, but it is open only irregularly. It's on the menu at Rob's Goodtime Grill and Garden Island BBQ in Lihue. My brother and sister in law used to own and operate the Aloha Diner in Kapaa which specialized in Hawaiian food...their saimin was pretty good. My brother in law and sister in law still have "saimin night" at their house where many are invited.

What Kauai does lack is a decent ramen restaurant! Needless to say, I like noodles.

Jan 13, 2015
wabi in Hawaii

Kauai: Portuguese Sausage

Melanie...Aloha.
I live on Kauai, and shop at a variety of venues throughout the island. I am currently NOT aware of any artisanal or locally produced portuguese sausage. My wife and I usually buy Redondos or the Purity brand, and always have some on hand in our fridge. It's like rice and Spam...they are Hawaii staples.

When you are here on Kauai or before hand you may want to contact the folks at Kaneshiro Farms who are the most notable pork producers on Kauai. Their phone number is 808-742-7285. Another suggestion would be Marta Lane at Tasting Kauai, www.tastingkauai.com. Two chefs that come to mind would be Jean Marie Josselin, or Ron Miller of the Hukilau Lanai. Both chefs are very involved in using Kauai made products in their restaurants.

Since you've raised the question, I will ask around. Since Kauai is such a rural island with lots of hunters, I am sure there are guys out there making their own sausage, but I dont think anyone is doing it on a commercial scale. I have been an amateur bacon maker for the past several years, and would LOVE to get into charcuterie...I'd like to attend some classes or seminars before tackling it.

By all means, let us know what you find out.

Jan 13, 2015
wabi in Hawaii

7 nights in Kauai

Kathryn...JO2 is the expression of Jean Marie for his desire to do more fine dining. He's a smart guy who doesn't over extend himself with grand venues. If you recall A Pacific Cafe was in a shopping center with a Safeway. His Josselins Tapas Bar and Grill is in a touristy shopping complex. JO2 is a storefront in an older mini-mall next to a funky taco place and a Hawaiian massage shop in Kapaa, just a short distance from the site of his old A Pacific Cafe. JO2 is small, with a capacity of 40, and does not have a bar in it. He offers a limited wine and beer selection, but no mixed drinks. There simply isn't room for it. In a very wise and gracious move, his daughter is the manager. The menu is classic Josselin with a nice mix of things emphasizing locally sourced food products. It is Jean Marie behind the stove every night, along with a chef he brought in, Mia Gaines. It's classic Jean Marie Josselin...with attention to the smallest of details. It's just all done very well.

Here is an article from the local paper: http://thegardenisland.com/entertainm...

Here is the JO2 website: http://www.jotwo.com

For those of you who enjoy social media, they are on Facebook.

Like his other restaurants, the menu changes all the time, depending on what is available.

My suggestion...make reservations early.

Jan 10, 2015
wabi in Hawaii
2

Gluten-free (rice noodle) saimin on Kauai?

Saimin and gluten free is pretty much an oxymoron. I dont think it's happening. There are very few saimin places on Kauai, and they are all old school mom and pop places that do it the old fashioned way with salty broth and wheat noodles.

The only alternative I might suggest would be Pho Kauai or Pho Kapaa which serve vietnamese pho which is made with rice noodles.

Jan 10, 2015
wabi in Hawaii

7 nights in Kauai

troutpoint...aloha and welcome to Kauai. I hope you enjoy your visit.
Kathryn has nailed pretty much all of the spots popular with both visitors and locals.
Let me add a few that have not been covered if I can.

Hanapepe... Bobbie's. A very local plate lunch place open for lunch and dinners. Very good food and massive portions ( a hallmark of true Hawaiian Plate Lunch). Very popular with local folks.

Lihue...Pho Kauai. Decent Vietnamese food. Very popular with locals here.
Kauai Beer Company...On thursday nights they invite food trucks from around the island to set up out in front of their brewery. Very good beer...and the best of Kauai's food truck scene. Very local Kauai hipster scene on Thursday evenings. Get there at 5 or earlier if you want a table!

Kapaa... Kilauea Fish Market... great fish wraps/salads/fish tacos.
Hukilau Lanai...dinner only. One of the places on Kauai that is really big on farm to table using locally grown or raised food.
JO2 in Kapaa, Jean Marie Josselins new restaurant. (He owns Josselins Tapas Bar and Grill in Poipu). JO2 offers fine dining...he's behind the stove at JO2 now. (Full disclosure here, I have been friends with Josselin for 25 years, so I am biased...read reviews yourself)
Oasis...in the large condo complex across from Kauai Village. Lunch and Dinner. Killer location...right on the beach. Pretty good food, they are heavy on farm to table as well with lots of Kauai products on the menu.

That's pretty much what I can add that I didn't see talked about already.

I'm a long term Kauai resident...if I can answer any questions, ask away.

French Fry Cutter Advice?

I dont know what size plate, but da wahine is a keeper!

Good pocketknife for breads, cheeses, salami etc.

Along the lines of Kaleo's suggestion is an A G Russell folding chef's knife..

http://www.agrussell.com/a-g-russell-...

I've seen one and it is pretty sturdy. I also have a Cherusker Ryback folding chef's knife that Kevin Wilkins designed a few years back.

My favorite one that has literally gone around the world with me was made by my friend Tom Krein. It's called a Jack Turner Special. He made me one out of Talonite, one of my favorite steels. Here is one:

http://forthenrycustomknives.com/prod...

Dec 11, 2014
wabi in Cookware

Good pocketknife for breads, cheeses, salami etc.

Zakappel....Aloha. You've started a conversation that can go on for years. Ask a bunch of guys what their favorite EDC (Every Day Carry) pocket knife is, and you will get a million opinions, and every one of them are valid. Your request was initially for a pocket knife, which I interpret as being a folding knife. If you are just going to use it (and store it) at work, might I suggest a fixed blade "picnic knife". Search on Amazon, and there are several to chose from from Joyce Chen, Messermeister, and Zyliss. They come with a slip on plastic sheath, and are great to stick in your desk or lunch box.

I would counsel against the Japanese knife. The higonokami is a traditional Japanese pocket knife, simple and basic. It has several characteristics that make it less than ideal for what you want. 1..most of the higonokamis are made with carbon steel which rusts if you look at it wrong. 2..The blades of these knives tend to be thick, which makes it not as efficient for slicing. 3...the higo is a friction folder which means it has no locking mechanism, you have to be careful using it so that it doesn't close on you. If you are set on the Japanese style, Kershaw Shun makes an updated higonokami stainless steel steak knife that is VERY nice. I also believe that it locks.

The Opinel.... the classic folding picnic knife. It comes in many sizes, and is cheap. The downside is that it is carbon steel as well, so it will rust if not taken care of, and it has a flimsy lock mechanism. Inexpensive so you won't cry if it gets lost, it's also a non-threatening knife some those who may become alarmed with a "knife" in the workplace.

I'll go one step further here and suggest....why dont you just get yourself a decent pocket knife, put it in your pocket, and use it not only for lunch, but for whatever you want to. I would suggest something from Spyderco. For your needs I would suggest a Spyderco Delica or Endure. If you are concerned about it rusting from not taking care of it, look into the Spyderco Pacific Salt. It is made of a steel called H1 which does not rust. Spyderco makes a whole slew of knives that surely one would fit your needs.

Then there are custom knives made by knife makers for general or specific tasks. For customs, the sky is the limit . I carry an Emerson CQC6 and a Tom Mayo Covert. The 2 of them meet every one of my cutting needs.

Let us know what you end up with.

Dec 11, 2014
wabi in Cookware

Thai Cookbook Suggestions

Wow..there is a bunch of good Thai cookbooks out there.

Another by David Thompson is the encyclopedic "Thai Food", as well as his "Thai Street Food".
"Simple Thai Food: Classic Recipes From The Home Thai Kitchen" by Leela Punyaratabandhu published just this past year is excellent and features down to earth practical recipes. Her food blog She Simmers is an excellent resource.
"Pok Pok" by Andy Ricker is excellent and VERY Thai despite its western author.
"It Rains Fishes: Legends, Traditions And The Joys Of Thai Cooking" by Kasma Loha-unchit is out of print, but worth seeking out. She also has a website Thai Food and Travel Blog that has a lot of recipes.
"Cracking The Coconut: Classic Thai Home Cooking" by Su-mei Yu is also good.

My first Thai cookbook ever remains one of my favorites as well is "Keo's Thai Cuisine" by Keo Sananikone. Keo had a series of Thai restaurants in Honolulu, this cookbook comes from his restaurants.

There are plenty more out there, but these are my favorites.

Dec 10, 2014
wabi in Home Cooking
1

For your well-to-do inner caveman:

I have to echo Chem here. I am a collector of custom knives, a lot of my friends are knife makers. I carry and use all of my custom knives, irregardless of the price. I've been carrying an Emerson CQC6 for about 15 years now, and it has a wonderful patina to it. Nothing makes a knife maker happier than to see the tools they make being used. That is what they designed and made them for. For me the added bonus is to carry and use a tool made by a friend or someone I know.

What good is it sitting in a box?

Dec 10, 2014
wabi in Cookware