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Swooning Over Sumptuous Scallops

Columns Ono, You Know

May 18, 2014

Story By: Alana Folen | Photos by: Anthony Consillio

Looking back on my last few days spent in New York City, I just want to relive my dining experiences over and over again. Everything was amazing, from the enormous mile-high corned beef and pastrami sandwich at Carnegie Deli on Seventh Avenue, to the mind-blowing Mother’s Day feast at Tavern on the Green in Central Park, and who could forget the famed French macarons at Laduree Paris on the Upper East Side?

Upon my return home to the Islands, I couldn’t help but dwell on the romance and grandeur of New York City’s extravagance. So this week, I fancied it up with another elite dining adventure. Wonder what will make a wonderful pairing with a few glasses of Sherry as you relax in the lap of luxury? Sumptuous sea scallops are ideal. When scouting the best scallops, quality always takes precedence over size.

And sea scallops are more delicious than ever thanks to these Ono, You Know restaurants that have crafted the most brilliant forms of scallop succulence in town. Utter simplicity with minimal adornment is what I’m after — the ideal caramelized crust is only the beginning. Be mindful that scallops are considered an aphrodisiac — it’s time for some sexy eats!

Ocean House

Crave the luxury of premier cuisine? More specifically within an open-air atmosphere overlooking the vast azure waters of Waikiki Beach with a picturesque view of Diamond Head in the distance? Yes? Then look no further than Ocean House, a famed dining spot within Outrigger Reef on the Beach Hotel. The restaurant opened in 2002 and resembles a plantation-style home.

Under the direction of chef Ricky Goings, the menu is eclectic with many options to choose from.

Goings trained in Tokushima, Japan, under the wing of chef Katsuyuki Kijiya for four years. During that time, Goings became knowledgeable of Asian culinary practices and enriched his passion for genuine ingredients.

Peruse the menu, and if you possess an innate love for scallops, you’ll be immediately drawn to Peppered Seared Scallops ($12.50). This appetizer alone gives regulars a reason to keep coming back. Melt-in-your mouth Hokkaido U10 scallops are pan-seared and rolled in cracked pepper, then plated. Soy sake garlic butter sauce doused over the scallops intensifies the already superb flavor of the dish, and the array of button mushrooms is a nice complement.

I recommend soaking up every bit of sauce with slices of bread until the plate is sparkling clean. You don’t want anything left behind when it comes to this starter.

Ocean House
Outrigger Reef Hotel
2169 Kalia Road
923-2277

W Bistro at 1010

For husband-and-wife duo Richard and Judy Weinstein, carving a niche into the restaurant industry came naturally despite their pharmaceutical background. Having previously spearheaded a pharmaceutical operation, the Weinsteins let their entrepreneurial drives take charge, and soon enough W Bistro at 1010 was up and running.

Located in Honolulu Medical Arts Building on South King Street, W Bistro at 1010 presents a food culture centered around farm-to-table cuisine. Immersing themselves in the community, the Weinsteins are adamant supporters of local farmers and fresh, top-quality ingredients.

W Bistro at 1010's Seared Sea Scallops ($16). Nathalie Walker photo

W Bistro at 1010’s Seared Sea Scallops ($16). Nathalie Walker photo

Executive chef Eric Omick creates spectacular dishes, outstanding in both taste and presentation.

The scallop connoisseur will find immediate gratification in Seared Sea Scallops. Priced at $16, this dinnertime offering boasts wild caught U10 East Coast fresh scallops served with a delicious butternut squash puree, bosc pear, alii mushrooms and seared spinach.The scallops are moist and tender — the perfect canvas for the sweet-and-savory garnishing.

Speaking of artistry, W Bistro is a place to eat as well as shop, as it showcases vintage prints and paintings from local art galleries, such as Makaha Art Gallery, available for purchase.

Care for a glass of wine with your meal? The restaurant is BYOB and a wine delivery service hosted by The Wine Stop also is available to patrons upon request.

W Bistro at 1010
Honolulu Medical Arts Building
1010 S. King St., Ste. 108
598-2295

Japengo

Japengo's Scallop Butter Yaki ($16). Photo courtesy of Japengo

Japengo’s Scallop Butter Yaki ($16). Photo courtesy of Japengo

Edible gems of the Pacific Rim are under one roof at Japengo within Hyatt Regency Waikiki Beach Resort and Spa. Not to be confused with fusion cuisine, Japengo commits to authenticity by keeping loyal to specific flavors of various regions.

The ambiance is welcoming and invigorating, the staff friendly, and the food extraordinary. Japengo operates its business under the resort’s global philosophy of providing guests with healthy and sustainable dinnertime options.

A treasure from the appetizer portion of the menu is Scallop Butter Yaki ($16), torched and glazed with flavor-filled roasted garlic, sweet ginger and a kick of chili. After a bit of braising, this electrifying seafood starter is beautifully plated and enhanced with black tobiko and shiso leaf.

A crowd pleaser, Scallop Butter Yaki is an indulgent pick-me-up and makes for sweet beginnings.

Japengo
Hyatt Regency Waikiki Beach Resort and Spa
2424 Kalakaua Ave.
923-1234