Them Dining Does Japanese-French Fusion Right
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Tucked inside, around the corner and next to the pool of the Waikiki Sand Villa Hotel is a hidden gem of a Japanese restaurant called Them Dining offering traditional Japanese food with a French twist.
Finding “Them” can be tricky, but it’ll be well worth the effort. The place is small (seating about 20 people) and simple, but the food is huge on flavor and taste. With more than three decades of experience in the kitchen, chef Kazuo Shimada describes his food as Japanese-French fusion. Originally from Japan, he lived in Florida for three years before moving to Hawaii two years ago, just as Them Dining was opening its doors.
Stop in during lunch and enjoy a variety of rice bowls, such as Seafood Bowl ($20), Ahi Shoyu Bowl ($20), Salmon & Ikura Bowl ($16) and Uni & Ikura Bowl ($25).
For dinner, there is a nice assortment of appetizers, including a homemade Chicken Meatball ($7.50) and Marinated Seafood ($12), which consists of tuna sashimi, scallops, sweet shrimp and uni served with a mix of basil and olive oil, and balsamic vinegar.
Among the popular entrees is Beef Curry ($15.50, served with rice and salad), which features tender pieces of beef in a thick Japanese-style curry that is impressively rich in flavor.
For something on the lighter side, try Them Dining Special Salad ($9.50) with mixed greens, prosciutto, tomatoes, radish, red onion, shredded beets and a refreshing Japanese soy sauce-base dressing.
Chef Shimada first visited Hawaii 30 years ago and found that he really liked the environment, including the tropical weather and beautiful ocean. He says he’s always wanted to return, and finally has found his way back, bringing with him his passion for cooking and delicious original recipes.
Located on the corner of Kanekapolei Street and the Ala Wai Boulevard, a visit to Them Dining is like finding a piece of Japan off the beaten path. Complimentary parking (valet only) is available at Waikiki Sand Villa Hotel, as well as meter parking on nearby streets.
Waikiki Sand Villa Hotel
2375 Ala Wai Blvd.
Daily, Lunch 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m. Dinner 6-9:30 p.m. *Bar time 9 p.m.-midnight