Escape to a Perfect World at Odoriko Japanese RestaurantColumns Lite Bites
September 23, 2012
Story By: Yu Shing Ting | Photos by: Nathalie Walker
With more than 100 menu items to choose from, there’s definitely something for everyone at Odoriko Japanese Restaurant in Waikiki.
Known for its izakaya style of dining (a popular tradition in Japan where people end their day by going to a restaurant to unwind and enjoy good food, usually appetizer-style, and drinks), Odoriko serves authentic Japanese food in a comfortable, family-friendly setting.
“It’s a feeling of relaxation,” explains Hiro Takei, general manager. “You’re here with your buddies or your family, away from your job and away from your worries or you’re here because of your worries, and you can just hang out, clear your mind, and eat and drink.”
At Odoriko, customers usually order a la carte and share, however, there are teishoku (Japanese set dinners) available as well. Some popular dishes are Garlic Buttered Clams ($10.95), Organic Tofu Salad ($9.75), Dynamite Seafood Casserole ($10.95), Garlic Shrimp ($12.95), Shrimp and Vegetable Tempura ($13.50), Yaki Udon ($12.95), Rainbow Roll ($18.50), Sushi and Sashimi Set ($29.95).
The food is authentic, just like you would find in Japan, and the menu is categorized by noodles, rice, sashimi, sushi, sushi rolls, grilled dishes, deep-fried dishes, salad, teishoku and nabemono (hot pot entrees, including shabu shabu, chanko nabe, sukiyaki and seafood nabe). There also is a large sake, beer and wine selection, as well as cocktails.
There are happy hour specials from 4 to 6 p.m., and half-off any size draft beer from 10 p.m. to midnight as well. Kamaaina and Honolulu Star-Advertiser readers also get 10 percent off all food as an on-going promotion. The restaurant also has rooms for private parties with karaoke, including three Japanese tatami-style that can seat 16 people in each or connect to fit 50, and three Western-style rooms with the same seating capacity.
Opened in 1978 by Nobuteru Takei, Odoriko is the sister restaurant to the former Maiko Restaurant at Ilikai Hotel. The company celebrates its 40th anniversary this year, and continues to provide locals and visitors an authentic Japanese restaurant in both taste and service. “My father’s values are around family and friends, and food and drinking, and working hard and relaxing afterwards,” adds Hiro. “When he started the business and years after, he always told me that the restaurant business was the perfect job for him because when customers come here and they’re having a good time, enjoying themselves and laughing, and then they thank him at the door, there’s always that feeling of warmth.”
Odoriko Japanese Restaurant
King’s Village Shopping Center
2400 Koa Ave., Waikiki
Lunch: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Dinner: 5 p.m. to midnight