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Keeping It Consistent At Kobe Steakhouse

Columns Order of the Day

December 24, 2011

Story By: Dining Out Team |

When it comes to one of the highlights of Kobe Japanese Steakhouse and Sushi Bar, located in Waikiki, consistency is the first thing that comes to mind, according to restaurant owner and general manager Roy Nakamura.

  • Boneless Short Ribs ($12)
  • Servers Susan Hwang and Hannah Choi with Kobe's Boneless Short Ribs and Kobe Rib-Eye Special.
  • Kobe Scallops ($10)
  • Ahi Poke Salad ($10)
  • Kobe Rib-Eye Special ($34.95)
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“We’re going on our 39th year,” Nakamura says. “This is the only Kobe Steakhouse on Oahu, and it hasn’t changed much (since it opened). This eatery includes a lounge and sushi bar; the dining area is upstairs and downstairs.”

Kobe Steakhouse is known for its traditional teppanyaki style, a style of Japanese cuisine in which the food is cooked on an iron griddle.

“Overall, teppanyaki dining is a simple concept,” states Nakamura. “The defining thing is everything is brought to your table in its raw state, so the product has to be fresh because it comes out raw. The chef then prepares everything for you, from your vegetables to the steaks, chicken and seafood.”

Although he says the eatery does not have a signature dish, Nakamura says that one of the Kobe Steakhouse chefs constantly encourages customers to try the scallops.

“He’s (our head chef) proud of our scallops,” Nakamura says. “He tries to push our Scallops & Steak Combo ($34.95) — Nova Scotia scallops and tender steak — or Teppan Scallops ($29.95).”

Other popular dinner orders at Kobe Steakhouse include Teriyaki Chicken & Steak Combo ($26.95), Teppan Shrimp ($29.95) and Steak & Shrimp ($34.95). All dinners come with a Teppan shrimp appetizer, shabu-shabu soup, vegetables, rice and tea. Nakamura reveals that Kobe Steakhouse will soon release a new menu, which will remain the same overall as the current menu, but will include the re-introduction of an old favorite.

“On our new menu, we’re featuring the Kobe Rib-Eye Special ($34.95),” says Nakamura, of the tender, juicy 10-ounce steak dinner that includes a teppan shrimp appetizer, pickled vegetables, shabu shabu soup, assorted grilled vegetables, bean sprouts and hot green tea. “The new menu is basically a reprint of the old menu … like I said, hardly anything changes here, but we’re hoping to release it before the end of the year.”

In addition to the dine-in menu, Kobe Steakhouse features a menu for its sushi bar, including a wide range of sashimi combinations and choices of nigiri sushi and maki sushi. While the restaurant only has dine-in services for its dinner menu, Nakamura says that customers can choose takeout at the sushi bar.

“The California Roll ($9) is always a popular one, and then there’s offshoots of that roll,” explains Nakamura. “The Rainbow Roll ($14) is basically the California Roll with pieces of sashimi on top, like the maguro, hamachi and salmon, mixed with avocado, so it’s a very colorful dish. The same is true with the Sixty-Nine Roll ($17) — it’s a California Roll with unagi on top of it. The Spicy Tuna Roll ($11.50) also is a popular one.”

Since March, Kobe Steakhouse has provided a special pupu menu from which customers in the lounge area can order.

“The pupu menu is geared a little more toward the locals, with the popular Ahi Poke ($10), Edamame Soybeans ($4 plain; $5 with garlic), Garlic Pork Chops ($12) and Boneless Short Ribs ($12),” Nakamura explains.

While Kobe Steakhouse is not promoting any monthly specials, Nakamura notes that the restaurant provides “Super Sunset Specials” nightly from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., when select items — including Teriyaki Chicken, Daily Fish, Sukiyaki Steak and the Teriyaki Steak & Chicken Combo — are offered at lower prices.

“We discount some menu items; it’s generally $4 to $5 off a dinner,” Nakamura says.

Kobe Steakhouse & Sushi Bar

  • Where
    • 1841 Ala Moana Boulevard
    • Honolulu, HI 96815
  • Call
    • (808) 941-4444
  • Hours
    • 5:30 p.m. – 10:30 p.m.
    • Open daily for dinner only
    • Lounge opens at 5 p.m.
  • Website
  • Notes
    • Valet parking available in front of the restaurant.