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Order of the Day

No Holding Back on Classic Chinese Fare

By Jaimie Kim Photos By Lawrence Tabudlo
August 25, 2013

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With all the hidden gems for foodies located throughout the island, it’s impossible that you’ve tried them all. But the next time you’re in the area, consider making a stop at New Mui Kwai III Restaurant on Liliha Street.

The restaurant has been open for five years and serves up traditional and local Chinese favorites.

“Our food is Hong Kong style,” says owner Mei Lam, who runs the restaurant with her husband, Peter.

One of the best things about feasting at a Chinese restaurant is the family-style dining it promotes — which also means ordering a handful of dishes and being able to sample a little bit of everything. With close to 150 items on the menu, you definitely won’t leave hungry.

For starters, order Minute Chicken Cake Noodle ($9.50). Saimin noodles are steamed before they are deep-fried and cut into cake noodle squares. Oyster sauce is added, as well as choy sum. The chicken is deep-fried, which keeps the meat supple, and the dish is topped with garlic and green onions.

Another popular item on the menu is Garlic Shrimp with Fun ($12.95). The “fun” element of the dish refers to the thicker noodles that are steamed and cooked with shrimp. The combination is steamed for another five to 10 minutes while shoyu and other elements of the sauce are added. Plated, the noodles make up the first layer and are topped with shrimp, as well as garlic and green onions. The finely minced and ample amount of garlic ensures flavor in every bite. While the shrimp is cooked with the shell included, the intricate way the restaurant prepares it makes it simple to pull off before devouring.

Dining and trying new dishes is all about discovering new flavors and textures. New Mui Kwai III’s Pot Roast Pork with Taro ($13.50) definitely will be a new experience. Pork belly is cooked and mixed with taro, vegetables, butter and a traditional Chinese sauce. The addition of taro provides a starchy layer that makes the meat extremely tender and adds another layer of flavor to the dish.

And if you’re looking for something with a kick, the restaurant has a dish that will definitely awaken your palate. The pepper found in Pepper Salt Pork Chop ($9.50) is not your average black pepper seasoning. Rather, chili peppers and jalapenos accompany the fresh pork that is deep-fried. You’ll be able to smell wafts of jalapeno as soon as the dish nears your table — which makes it perfect for those who like to heat things up.

New Mui Kwai III also is promoting a special running through the end of August: Order $35 worth of food and receive an order of Orange Chicken for only $1.99.

The restaurant takes reservations, as well as takeout and catering orders. There is a parking lot behind the eatery where a few stalls are available. Otherwise, patrons are advised to find street parking.

New Mui Kwai III Restaurant

1632 Liliha St., Honolulu
537-3210
Tuesday-Sunday, 10 a.m.-9 p.m.
Monday, 10 a.m.-8 p.m.