Sunday, June 17, 2012

Orchids Restaurant at the Halekulani Hotel

Verry Berry Mojito at Orchids.
Not only guests of the Halekulani Hotel can enjoy the ocean view. Diners
at Orchids can enjoy the same experience.
(above photos: TheHopefulTraveler)
I've been longing to again dine at Orchids at the Halekulani Hotel ever since I ate their exquisite version of the local favorite dish called the the loco moco. Picture a red wine poached egg in lieu of a sunny-side egg found at most local restaurants topping a perfectly shaped mound of rice and hamburger. That was for lunch so it was great to have the opportunity to return for dinner.

One of the high-end dining options at Waikiki hotels, Orchids offers one of the most spectacular views of the beach at Waikiki. The restaurant also has one of the best Sunday brunch buffets on the island.

Starting with a Verry Berry Mojito ($12; white rum, fresh berries, lime juice, mint leaves, splash of soda over ice), it's one of the best cocktails I've had ever. I have a sweet tooth which it satisfied but it's the refreshing taste that matched this cool summer evening that made it special.

It should be noted that the menu is a la carte and appetizers are per person. The focus of the dinner menu at Orchids is contemporary seafood but meat options are available.

This is the Halekulani Hotel which represents a high standard in the hospitality industry and the service at the restaurant is impeccable.

For a starter, the Big Island Abalone ($16) with Sea Asparagus, Tomato and Fennel Nege is filled with light flavors and the broth worth eating to the last spoonful.

Beef Tenderloin ($45) with Green Peas Puree, Potatoes, Olives, Hawaiian Sea Salt, Beetroot and Balsamic Jus. After just having a fine steak at BLT Steak nearby, I should have gone with the seafood option, but I love a perfectly prepared steak and this one was accented by the deep flavor of the balsamic jus. I remember an episode of the television series "Top Chef" about judges commenting on how perfect they loved a contestants pea puree. This is how I imagined it tasted.

Raspberry Bavarian ($11; praline crunch, rose marshmallow and red currant). If feel like ordering a second serving of a dish either it wasn't enough or it was delicious and refreshing that you couldn't get enough of it. This dessert fits the latter description.

As usual a selection of three kinds of bread presented before dinner.

Make a reservation for early in the evening and you'll likely be able to snag one of tables on the restaurant lanai. The views of the ocean are wonderful made all the better by the cool Hawaiian breeze.

Another view of the covered seating on the Orchid lanai.
(above photos: TheHopefulTraveler)

Visit for more information. Hours: Breakfast 7:30am-11am (Mon-Sat); Lunch 11:30am-2pm (Mon-Sat); Dinner 6pm-10pm daily; Sunday Brunch Buffet 9:30am-2:30pm. Note that the restaurant has a dress code. For day: resort attire. Dinner service: collared shirts and slacks for gentleman, evening attire for ladies.


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