Archive for July, 2014

New summer menu at Bernini

By
July 9th, 2014



PHOTOS BY NADINE KAM / nkam@staradvertiser.comA dish of Kahuku corn risotto with shaved truffle is one of the hits on Bernini Honolulu's new summer menu.

PHOTOS BY NADINE KAM / NKAM@STARADVERTISER.COM

A dish of Kahuku corn risotto with shaved truffle is one of the hits on Bernini Honolulu's new summer menu.

Ever wonder why you're less hungry during summer?

Chalk it up to the thermic effect of food. The body's reaction to heat is identical to its response to fever.

Years ago, I interviewed nutrition consultant Dr. Joannie Dobbs, who said, "When you have a fever, you don't feel like eating because the body is doing what it can to keep your temperature down."

Blood is directed to the stomach and digestive area as you eat, so the body is not able to radiate heat.

"When you eat, your metabolism increases and the body has to work harder to get rid of the excess heat," she said. To regulate body temperature, appetite is suppressed.

On a cellular level, the body knows what it needs to cool down, but we don't always cooperate.

Sometimes you need someone to do the meal planning for you, and at Bernini Honolulu, chef Kengo Matsumoto has done that with a summer menu that offers a lighter approach to Italian cuisine.

The full regular menu is also available, but here are the a la carte summer additions.

Venetian-style beef carpaccio with Parmesan topped arugula and aioli sauce.

Venetian-style beef carpaccio with Parmesan topped arugula and aioli sauce.

Marinated octopus salad with tomato, orange and fennel.

Marinated octopus salad with tomato, orange and fennel.

Caviar on capellini with heirloom tomato and raspberry vinaigrette.

Caviar on capellini with heirloom tomato and raspberry vinaigrette.

This dish of homemade fettuccine with Shinsato pork ragu and green olives rivaled the risotto as one of the top dishes of the evening. Fantastic texture and flavor, and lighter than one might assume with a pasta dish.

This dish of homemade fettuccine with Shinsato pork ragu and green olives rivaled the risotto as one of the top dishes of the evening. Fantastic texture and flavor, and lighter than one might assume with a pasta dish.

If you're in the mood for pizza, the summer offering features grilled eggplant, Italian sausage and ricotta.

If you're in the mood for pizza, the summer offering features grilled eggplant, Italian sausage and ricotta.

Veal cutlet Milano with cherry tomatoes and baby kale salad.

Veal cutlet Milano with cherry tomatoes and baby kale salad.

There's swordfish under this deconstructed involtini featuring a sauté of scallop mousse, prawns and clams.

There's swordfish under this deconstructed involtini featuring a sauté of scallop mousse, prawns and clams.

Even if you feel you have no room for dessert, you'll be surprised by the lightness of a Maui Gold pineapple tart with yogurt sauce. Usually pineapple is heavy, treacly or sour. The Maui Gold is beautifully mellow. The candied pineapple accent is wonderful.

Even if you feel you saved no room for dessert, you'll be surprised by the lightness of a Maui Gold pineapple tart with yogurt sauce. Usually pineapple is heavy, treacly or sour. The Maui Gold is beautifully mellow. The candied pineapple accent is wonderful.

Desserts are usually so rich, they must be shared, but in spite of eating all of the above, I could have easily finished this Kona coffee gelée and caramel bavarois by myself. It's topped with coconut granita.

Desserts are usually so rich, they must be shared, but in spite of eating all of the above, I could have easily finished this Kona coffee gelée and caramel bavarois by myself. It's topped with coconut granita.

Bernini Honolulu is at 1218 Waimanu St. (on the left if heading in the direction toward the parking ramp to Ala Moana). Open 5:30 to 10:30 p.m. Tuesdays to Sundays. Call (808) 591-8400.

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Nadine Kam is Style Editor and staff restaurant critic at the Honolulu Star-Advertiser; her coverage in print on Wednesdays and Thursdays. Contact her via email at nkam@staradvertiser.com and follow her on Twitter, Instagram and Rebel Mouse.

Andaz chef wins Hyatt competiton

By
July 3rd, 2014



PHOTOS BY NADINE KAM / NKAM@STARADVERTISER.COMGARY JOHNSON, LEAD SUPERVISOR FOR KA'ANA KITCHEN AT ANDAZ MAUI AT WAILEA, TOOK TOP HONORS DURING THE HYATT GOOD TASTE SERIES COMPETITION THAT TOOK PLACE JUNE 27.THE CHEF IS SURROUNDED BY HIS ADMIRERS.

PHOTOS BY NADINE KAM / NKAM@STARADVERTISER.COM

GARY JOHNSON, LEAD SUPERVISOR FOR KA'ANA KITCHEN AT ANDAZ MAUI AT WAILEA, TOOK TOP HONORS DURING THE HYATT GOOD TASTE SERIES COMPETITION THAT TOOK PLACE JUNE 27 AT THE HYATT REGENCY WAIKIKI. THE CHEF IS SURROUNDED BY HIS ADMIRERS AFTER THE CONTEST.

Hyatt Hotels & Resorts is creating some restaurant buzz across North America by touting their chefs through The Good Taste Series, an “Iron Chef"-style competition (excluding executive chefs) that underscores the hotel chain’s commitment to supporting the next generation of culinary stars.

The Hyatt Regency Waikiki Beach Resort & Spa was host to one of 12 regional competitions on Friday; out of seven contenders, Gary Johnson, lead supervisor of Ka'ana Kitchen at Andaz Maui at Wailea, emerged the victor for Hawaii and the Pacific Northwest. He won a $500 cash prize, plus a trip back to Maui (ha!) to represent Hawaii in the national championship taking place on Nov. 4 at Andaz. I'll be watching to see how he fares in the nantional competition in the fall.

HERE ARE TWO OF THE DISHES THAT LED TO GARY JOHNSON'S VICTORY. AT TOP IS HIS TAKO AND CASSAVA ROOT OVER TOAST, WITH ONSEN EGG. THE TENDER TAKO WAS ESPECIALLY AMAZING. BELOW, A STRAIGHT-FROM- THE-GARDEN HEALTHFUL PRESENTATION FOR CHILDREN, USING PRODUCE FROM JOHNSON'S GARDEN, WITH OPAKAPAKA, QUINOA AND A LILIKOI SAUCE.

HERE ARE TWO OF THE DISHES THAT LED TO GARY JOHNSON'S VICTORY. AT TOP IS HIS TAKO AND CASSAVA ROOT OVER TOAST, WITH ONSEN EGG. THE TENDER TAKO WAS ESPECIALLY AMAZING. BELOW, A STRAIGHT-FROM-THE-GARDEN HEALTHFUL PRESENTATION FOR CHILDREN, USING PRODUCE FROM JOHNSON'S GARDEN WITH OPAKAPAKA, QUINOA AND A LILIKOI SAUCE.

Hyatt garden

AUDREY SPENCE'S LUNCH DISH WAS A NORTHWEST "FALAFEL" PLATE WITH TOMATO- AND FENNEL-GLAZED WASHINGTON LING COD AND GARBANZO BEANS, TOPPED WITH A FRIED GARLIC SCAPE (THE FLOWER STALK).

In addition to Johnson, chefs nominated to participate in the competition were:

» Audrey Spence, Chef de cuisine at Urbane Restaurant at Hyatt Olive 8 (Seattle)

» Rebecca House, Sous chef at the Hyatt Regency Calgary

» Gevin Utrillo, Chef de cuisine at Japengo at the Hyatt Regency Maui Resort & Spa

» Jon Matsubara: Chef de cuisine at Japengo at the Hyatt Regency Waikiki Beach Resort & Spa

» Jeffrey Coil: Banquet supervisor at the Hyatt Regency Bellevue

» Reno Rodriguez: Banquet chef at the Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort & Spa

The chefs were tasked with creating three dishes for a panel of judges that including David Nadelman, Hyatt Area Vice President/Hawaii; chef Lee Anne Wong of Koko Head Cafe; Conrad Nonaka, director of the Culinary Institute of the Pacific; and a wildcard judge chosen from the audience.

The three dishes involved a creative breakfast option, a lunch offering, and a dish that would appeal to children. To the chefs' credit, timing was tight, with delivery of dishes scheduled five minutes apart. They all delivered, to the second!

I was able to photograph a handful of dishes, and it was clear the chefs really had fun with the children's challenge, with ideas parents could also use to entice their keiki to enjoy more vegetables.

THIS IS A TASTING PORTION OF REBECCA HOUSE'S BIG BISON BREAKFAST INCLUDING EGG AND BAKED BEANS.

THIS IS A TASTING PORTION OF REBECCA HOUSE'S BIG BISON BREAKFAST INCLUDING EGG AND BAKED BEANS.

HOUSE SHOWED A MORE PLAYFUL SIDE WITH HER KEIKI DISH, "SWIMMING CAKES" OF POTATO AND SWEET PEAS, ACCOMPANIED BY HEALTHIER YOGURT TARTAR SAUCE, APPLE-CRANBERRY COLE SLAW, FRUIT AND A FEW GOLDFISH CRACKERS FOR GOOD MEASURE. BELOW, KNOWING THAT KIDS DON'T ALWAYS FINISH WHAT THEY EAT AT THE TABLE, THE DISH WOULD BE OFFERED IN A REUSABLE TAKEOUT BOX FOR MUNCHING ON-THE-GO. MANY ADULTS WOULD LOVE THIS!

HOUSE SHOWED A MORE PLAYFUL SIDE WITH HER KEIKI DISH, "SWIMMING CAKES" OF POTATO AND SWEET PEAS, ACCOMPANIED BY HEALTHIER YOGURT TARTAR SAUCE, APPLE-CRANBERRY COLE SLAW, FRUIT AND A FEW GOLDFISH CRACKERS FOR GOOD MEASURE. BELOW, KNOWING THAT KIDS DON'T ALWAYS FINISH WHAT THEY EAT AT THE TABLE, THE DISH WOULD BE OFFERED IN A REUSABLE TAKEOUT BOX FOR MUNCHING ON-THE-GO. MANY ADULTS WOULD LOVE THIS!

FROM GEVIN UTRILLO CAME AN ISLAND BREAKFAST SKILLET WITH HOUSEMADE SAUSAGE, EGG, A DICE OF PURPLE SWEET POTATOES AND EDAMAME.

FROM GEVIN UTRILLO CAME AN ISLAND BREAKFAST SKILLET WITH HOUSEMADE SAUSAGE, EGG, A DICE OF PURPLE SWEET POTATOES AND EDAMAME.

UTRILLO LATER PRESENTED A KEIKI BENTO BOX WITH BITE-SIZE NIBBLES THAT INCLUDED A MINI MUSUBI AND MALASADA.

UTRILLO LATER PRESENTED A KEIKI BENTO BOX WITH BITE-SIZE NIBBLES THAT INCLUDED A MINI MUSUBI AND MALASADA.

IN THE LUNCH CATEGORY, THE HOST HOTEL'S JON MATSUBARA PRESENTED OPAKAPAKA WITH A CRISP LAYER OF POTATO SCALES, WITH KONA ABALONE AND KAUAI SHRIMP AND AN AROMATIC KAFFIR LIME AND CHILI BROTH. THIS IS JUST A JUDGE'S TASTING PORTION. THE REGULAR DISH WOULD BE PLATED AS BELOW, WITH THE BROTH POURED AT THE TABLE. SUBLIME.

IN THE LUNCH CATEGORY, THE HOST HOTEL'S JON MATSUBARA PRESENTED OPAKAPAKA WITH A CRISP LAYER OF POTATO SCALES, WITH KONA ABALONE AND KAUAI SHRIMP AND AN AROMATIC KAFFIR LIME AND CHILI BROTH. THIS IS JUST A JUDGE'S TASTING PORTION. THE REGULAR DISH WOULD BE PLATED AS BELOW, WITH THE BROTH POURED AT THE TABLE. SUBLIME.

Hyatt 7

IN THE KIDS CATEGORY, JEFFREY COIL OFFERED AN UPDATED, HEALTHIER MAC AND CHEESE WITH QUINOA PASTA AND BUTTERNUT SQUASH SAUCE, PRESENTED WITH BITE-SIZE FINGER MORSELS OF FRUIT AND VEGETABLES THAT MIGHT APPEAL TO KIDS' LOVE OF COLOR.

IN THE KIDS CATEGORY, JEFFREY COIL OFFERED AN UPDATED, HEALTHIER MAC AND CHEESE WITH QUINOA PASTA AND BUTTERNUT SQUASH SAUCE, PRESENTED WITH BITE-SIZE FINGER MORSELS OF FRUIT AND VEGETABLES THAT MIGHT APPEAL TO KIDS' LOVE OF COLOR.

IN THE KEIKI CATEGORY, RENO RODRIGUEZ OFFERED A BITE SIZE TRIO OF STEAMED MAHI COATED WITH PESTO, VEGETABLE GYOZA, AND FURIKAKE RICE BALL.

IN THE KEIKI CATEGORY, RENO RODRIGUEZ OFFERED A GRAZING PORTION TRIO OF STEAMED MAHI COATED WITH PESTO, VEGETABLE GYOZA, AND FURIKAKE RICE BALL.

Also part of the evening's challenges was a Masters of Mix contest sponsored by Market Advantage and Pernod Ricard to recognize up-and-coming local bartenders from Tiki's Grill & Bar, Uncle Bo's, Duke's Waikiki, The Pig & The Lady, the Hyatt Regency Waikiki and Pint & Jigger.

Alejandro Alvarado of Tiki's Grill & Bar won the audience-judged competition.

———

Nadine Kam is Style Editor and staff restaurant critic at the Honolulu Star-Advertiser; her coverage appears in print on Wednesdays and Thursdays. Contact her via email at nkam@staradvertiser.com and follow her on Twitter, Instagram and Rebel Mouse.

Wake up to Tucker & Bevvy Breakfast

By
July 2nd, 2014



PHOTOS BY NADINE KAM/ NKAM@STARADVERTISER.COMMY INTRODUCTION TO TUCKER & BEVVY BREAKFAST WAS A KALE AND QUINOA SALAD WITH ROASTED KABOCHA, TAMARI-TOASTED SUNFLOWER SEEDS AND TWO POACHED EGGS, THAT HAD ME FEELING LIGHT ON MY FEET.

PHOTOS BY NADINE KAM / NKAM@STARADVERTISER.COM

MY INTRODUCTION TO TUCKER & BEVVY BREAKFAST WAS A KALE AND QUINOA SALAD WITH ROASTED KABOCHA, TAMARI-TOASTED SUNFLOWER SEEDS AND TWO POACHED EGGS, THAT HAD ME FEELING LIGHT ON MY FEET.

Here's a look at some of the items on the new Tucker & Bevvy Breakfast menu to coincide with my review in today's Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

The breakfast nook is the first Honolulu sitdown restaurant for Tony and Cecily Ho Sargent, but the two are no strangers to the food biz, as serial restaurateurs who ran a trio of breakfast and sandwich shops in Manly, a beach suburb outside of Sydney, Australia.

The couple returned to Cecily's hometown to raise family, and while they paid homage to Hawaii by naming one of their Australia eateries Honolulu Grill; Tucker & Bevvy does the opposite with a name that is Australian slang for "food and drink."

Before launching the restaurant, the couple started with Tucker & Bevvy Picnic, which opened last fall in the Park Shore Hotel at 2586 Kalakaua Ave. It offers take-out fare with a healthy bent as a convenience to visitors and Waikiki residents, but is really not a destination spot, unless you're a vegetarian or vegan.

THE TIM TAM WAFFLE.

THE TIM TAM WAFFLE.

Tucker & Bevvy Breakfast is a destination, with a combination of "normal," plus healthy morning options, many unique to this restaurant, including a stir-fry chunky prime rib roast beef "hash" ($14.50) with red onions, fingerling potatoes and eggs over easy, and the Tim Tam waffle ($9.50) topped with vanilla ice cream and a couple of the chocolate malt biscuit and crumbled biscuits.

A kale and quinoa salad ($12.50), and plate of lentils and chicken sausages ($12.50) take the gluten-free diner into account.

Rounding out the menu are healthful juice options; sandwiches that include a B.L.T. ($8.50) with organic greens and avocado thrown in, and a burger ($12.50) "with the lot" of bacon, cheddar, grilled onions, beets and sweet chili mayonnaise; and yes, sides that include strips of crispy applewood-smoked bacon for $4.

If you believe life is not worth living on a restricted diet, go ahead and splurge on fluffy ricotta pancakes topped with strawberry compote ($9.50).

CRAVEABLE RICOTTA PANCAKES TOPPED WITH STRAWBERRY COMPOTE.

CRAVEABLE RICOTTA PANCAKES TOPPED WITH STRAWBERRY COMPOTE.

A WARM LENTIL SALAD WITH SPINACH, SLICED CHICKEN SAUSAGES AND TWO EGGS.

A WARM LENTIL SALAD WITH SPINACH, SLICED CHICKEN SAUSAGES AND TWO EGGS.

FOR FINICKY EATERS, DON'T WORRY, THERE'S ALSO THE TRIED AND TRUE, SUCH AS THIS SIDE OF BACON, FOR $4.

FOR FINICKY EATERS, DON'T WORRY, THERE'S ALSO THE TRIED AND TRUE, SUCH AS THIS SIDE OF BACON ($4).

TUCKER & BEVVY'S BURGER "WITH THE LOT."

TUCKER & BEVVY'S BURGER "WITH THE LOT."

A ROASTED VEGGIE OMELET STUFFED WITH EGGPLANT, PEPPERS, SWEET POTATO, ZUCCHINI AND MOZZARELLA, AND GRACED WITH PESTO.[/caption]

A ROASTED VEGGIE OMELET STUFFED WITH EGGPLANT, PEPPERS, SWEET POTATO, ZUCCHINI AND MOZZARELLA, AND GRACED WITH PESTO.

MUSHROOM ROSTI IS A FRESH HASH BROWN TOPPED WITH BALSAMIC MUSHROOMS, SPINACH AND TWO EGGS.[/caption]

MUSHROOM ROSTI IS A FRESH HASH BROWN TOPPED WITH BALSAMIC MUSHROOMS, SPINACH AND TWO EGGS.

COMFORT FARE OF FRIED RICE TOSSED WITH MORSELS OF GARLIC-PEPPER CHICKEN.[/caption]

COMFORT FARE OF FRIED RICE TOSSED WITH MORSELS OF GARLIC-PEPPER CHICKEN.

Tucker & Bevvy Breakfast is in the Hee Hing Plaza, 449 Kapahulu Ave., Suite 203. Open 6:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. daily. Call (808) 732-0050.

—————

Nadine Kam is Style Editor and staff restaurant critic at the Honolulu Star-Advertiser; her coverage appears in print on Wednesdays and Thursdays. Contact her via email at nkam@staradvertiser.com and follow her onTwitter, Instagram and Rebel Mouse.

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