29 August 2016
I had a very long day that began quite early. I hiked around Punchbowl Cemetery (National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific) to visit some old friends, including a few of my teachers when I was growing up here. Odd trip down memory lane here… I had lunch with a dear old friend who has known me since I was 7 (he was my father’s lawyer, and my father had a LOT of legal problems — all self-created…).
But for dinner I was going for something new, not quite memory lane stuff. Or is it? I took the bus there, as it was on the tail end of Chinatown. Wow, this was the first time I’ve been on TheBus since Reagan was POTUS! I’m serious! So weird…
I got to Chinatown and dodged all the annoying street people and made it to Lucky Belly. I took a seat at the bar and chilled, sensing this place had something interesting going. Lots of people rave about the ramen, but knowing my personal issues with that bizarre trend I went with other items.
I ordered my dinner and enjoyed a cocktail. Nice stuff they got too, and that made it a fun evening. My eyes popped open with the starter, lobster shumai…
Wow, these shumai were fantastic. Huge too. The flavours were awesome, with the lobster playing a prominent role here. I suspect there was more lobster in this $12 dish than in my $45 lobster carbonara last night at MW! One of the best shumai I’ve had in years!
I was really happy and anticipating the main dish, which came just as I embarked upon another cocktail. Mmm, soy-braised beef cheeks.
Lovely cheeks, strong flavours and excellent texture. Roots varied and awesome, which included daikon and sweet potato just to mix things up. But the cheeks themselves ruled, wow. Fabulous dish!
I had to be somewhere after this dinner, so sadly I settled up. But I know where I’ll be the first time I get back to Honolulu — this place! Fabulous, it’s my new fave in town! Excellent cocktails, solid service, fabulous food. What’s not to love, even if it means dodging the crazies wandering outside?
50 North Hotel Street
PS: I went drankin’ afterwards at the really cool Bar Leather Apron and got happy drinking for many hours. I’m not a fan of the perversion of the Speakeasy trend, but this place worked real good. Excellent staff, solid drinks, great variety. It’s somewhere between a Sasha Petraske and a Gen Yamamoto venue, so it’s pretty cool.