Authentic Sicilian Cuisine at Taormina
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By Jaimie Kim
Take a short trip into Waikiki, and send your palate to the south of Italy with authentic Sicilian food at Taormina Sicilian Cuisine.
Named after an ocean-side city in southern Italy, Taormina Sicilian Cuisine has been in business for five years and boasts an extensive Sicilian menu.
But don’t assume it’s the Italian food you may initially think of.
“A lot of people think of Italian as carbonara sauces or alfredo sauces, and we stay away from the heavy stuff,” says general manager Conan Paik-Rosa. “Sicilian is more fresh ingredients, a lot of fresh vegetables and herbs. Very light with just olive oil, white wine and lightly seasoned.”
Insalata Del Basco ($14, $5 at happy hour) is described by Paik-Rosa as being a “unique” salad. It is served with a pear compote, prosciutto (cured Italian ham), Feta cheese, walnuts and beets, and is topped with a homemade honey dressing.
Another favorite to start off with: Affettati ($18, $5 at happy hour), featured on the antipasto menu. With prosciutto, salami, pecorino cheese and Italian olives, the dish relies on flavor combinations, rather than a heavy sauce. Paik-Rosa recommends pairing it with wine.
If you’re looking for something a little more filling, Fresh Pasta Nero “Frutti di Mare” ($29) is made with fresh pasta and squid ink. It is topped with a frutti di mare sauce, which translates as “fruit of the sea.” This includes scallops, shrimp and clams topped with a mildly spicy olive oil, white wine and garlic sauce.
And with all appetizers priced at $5 during happy hour, you can’t go wrong.
Taormina Sicilian Cuisine
227 Lewers St., Honolulu
Sunday-Thursday, 11 a.m.-10 p.m.
Friday-Saturday, 11 a.m.-11 p.m.
Note: Validated parking is available in the neighboring Embassy Suites and Wyndham Hotel.