HY’S STEAK HOUSE
2440 Kuhio Ave. Honolulu, HI
Phone number (808) 922-5555
On ambiance alone, Hy’s Steak House is superior. It’s like sitting in a refined turn-of-the-century estate, surrounded by luxuries — dark wood and intricate crown molding, shelves lined with antique-looking books, waiters dressed in dapper suits.
In other words: my kind of place.
I stopped in earlier this month, and my meal that evening was pretty outstanding, too.
The menu at Hy’s is rather extensive, with typical steak-house fare (meat, seafood and sides), along with a selection of entrees. I never have fancied myself a fan of plain ol’ meat, seasoned with only the barest of flavors, so I quickly caught sight of Hy’s Garlic Steak on the list of Hy’s Classic Entrées.
Best. Decision. Ever.
It featured a 7-ounce prime filet mignon that was so tender (I ordered mine medium-rare), topped with a Hamakua mushroom sauté and garlic demi-glace, as well as some lightly grilled vegetables. The demi-glace was rich and punctuated the flavor of every bite. Each entrée comes with a selection of rice, mashed potatoes or a baked potato. Like the basic local I am, I opted for white rice and sopped up every bit of sauce with it.
Hy’s cooks its steak with Kiawe wood. In one part of the restaurant, there’s even a chef on display doing his thing over a grill in a glass-encased room — fun stuff. But it’s a flavor that perhaps isn’t suited to every diner. I liked that hint of smokiness it adds to every bite, but my fiancé, for one, says he prefers that buttery flavor other steakhouses rely on. Really, it’ll just come down to preference.
Of course, no trip to Hy’s is complete without experiencing its tableside service. There are a couple of salads to choose from — Hy’s Famous Caesar Salad and Hy’s Warm Spinach Salad — but if you’re worried about getting too full, then I’d recommend waiting until dessert. The Bananas Foster is just as fun to watch as it is delicious to eat, and if bananas aren’t your thing, there are a few other flambé options as well: Chocolate Lovers, Cherries Jubilee and Sinatra’s Strawberry Flambé.
Other dessert items not to miss out on: “Sweet Thoughts” Chocolate Decadence Cake and Mango Sorbet. The first is a rich, flourless cake that sticks to your teeth and has you slowly savoring each bite. The latter, as boring as it may sound, is a light and refreshing way to end an otherwise heavy meal.
Another word to the wise: If you’re going for date night, request a booth table. They’re set off to the side of the room and look pretty cozy. Plus, that puts you closer to the shelves of books, and I’d really like someone to report back to me on whether those are real. (I hope they are.)
FOOD TO EAT… AND DRINK
A while back, I reported to you briefly on a new bubble tea place, Nice To Meet You Tea House at Nimitz Center. I described it as being not much different from any other bubble tea place on the island right now, but things have changed.
New to the lineup at Nice To Meet You is a cotton candy topping that is all at once nostalgic and sweet and just a little bit silly. You can request to add it to any bubble tea drink, and though it doesn’t add any flavor to your drink — servers put it on top of the plastic covering so you’re really just eating cotton candy and then drinking bubble tea — it is rather fun.
Just be sure to go with friends. Partially because you’re going to want to have help eating that plume of cotton candy but also so that you don’t feel so self-conscious walking back to your table with it.
FANCY PANTS Dress code is strictly enforced here
ARRIVE ON TIME You won’t be seated without the whole party
ARTWORK There are many
CHECK OUT… The bar, for sure