1028 Nuuanu Ave., Chinatown
Phone number (808) 554-3847
Our advice is that you only go to Kan Zaman if you’re really, really hungry … because otherwise you’ll never be able to finish everything. Their Chicken Shawarma is a full plate of spiced chicken and pickles on rice pilaf, with a generous side portion of pita bread and hummus, along with even more pickles. And it’s all plenty affordable, to boot. Just don’t order an appetizer, too, especially the way-too-large Mezza Sampler. Unless you want to die of overeating…
3620 Waialae Ave., Kaimuki
Phone number (808) 734-0803
The best crepe at Aloha Crepes — in our humble opinion — has no photo on the menu. But look around and lo, the Abigail Crepe will satisfy every craving. Stuffed full of haupia and Nutella, topped with whipped cream (and ice cream … just pay for the add-on) and guava syrup, with a side of strawberries, this is just the perfect crepe. It sits at the nexus of creamy and tart, of decadent and sensible. It is sublime. We’ve had it twice and have no regrets.
SMOKED GUAVA CHICKEN
THE PIG & THE LADY
83 N. King St., Chinatown
Phone number (808) 585-8255
The Pig & The Lady recently tweaked its lunch menu, adding this Smoked Guava Chicken on as its new rice dish. So you’ve got several succulent pieces of chicken, rubbed in guava jam before getting smoked. The result is tender but alarmingly pink. Or at least ours was. Is that normal? We’re not sure, and it made us a little nervous, but we ate it anyway. The rest of the dish consists of some baby greens in a light vinaigrette and P&L’s signature chicken fat rice. Maybe next time we’ll stick to pho and banh mi.
FEDELINI WITH PORCINI CREAM SAUCE
Ala Moana Center, 1450 Ala Moana Blvd., Honolulu
Phone number (808) 955-5599
We’ve said it before, but it’s certainly worth mentioning again: The bread at Café Lani is not to be missed. You really can’t go wrong with any dish you order here, because as you enjoy your meal, waiters will periodically stop by and drop some complimentary bread of different variations (croissants and rolls, to name a couple) on your plate. And what goes better with bread than pasta? The Fedelini With Porcini Cream Sauce features the thin pasta swimming in a perfectly creamy sauce, with porcini and Portobello mushrooms. It’s topped with chestnuts, onions and arugula. It usually also comes with a hearty portion of bacon, but we subbed it out for asparagus.