Hot pot filled with ingredients of aloha
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The Islands brim with unique assortments of people and cultures, making Hawaii a metaphorical hot pot all its own. A tried and true comfort food, nabe, originally hails from Japan. Here at Nabeya Maido in Market City Shopping Center both Japanese- and local-style ingredients are immersed into the hot pots, which have attracted patrons since the restaurant opened in December 2013.
“Nabe translates to ‘hot pot’ and ‘ya’ means house in Japanese,” explains co-owner and general manager Kevin Suehiro. “word ‘maido,’ is similar in meaning to aloha. We chose that name because we serve good food for a good value with a smile.”
In order to make Nabeya Maido stand out from the rest, Suehiro and his business partner Yusuke “Sam” Sonobe decided to combine Japanese food and flavors with a Taiwanese approach to hot pot. Titled “Da Food Cave,” Nabeya Maido’s fully stocked refrigerators offer a plethora of nabe essentials presented on colored plates.
“We wanted to give our customers the freedom to choose what goes into their hot pot,” says Suehiro.
Each plate is priced according to color as well as category (meat, seafood, etc.).
While the options are endless, ranging from cabbage to oysters, one popular go-to choice is Tsukune ($3.90), a Japanese-style mixture comprised of chicken, vegetables and secret spices, which allow diners to form their own healthy meatballs.
Suehiro also recommends patrons try his favorite, Japanese Curry Nabe ($8.90). He describes the curry broth as sweet, salty and spicy, and adds that it’s full of flavors that are sure to impress.
“Before throwing your ingredients into the hot pot, always taste the broth first,” advises Suehiro. “That’s how you can tell if it’s good, authentic nabe — by the quality of the broth. We make our broths and sauces daily from Japanese ingredients.”
Nabe-style dining presents patrons with a fun and interactive experience.
At the end of your meal, don’t let all the leftover broth go to waste. Instead, use the rest to make Zosui ($3.90), which features a porridge made of rice and egg cooked in the leftover broth, and topped with green onion and nori.
During your next visit to the restaurant, try Nabeya Maido’s lunch special: Omakase Platter ($9.90).
And Suehiro also invites guests for happy hour, which is hosted all day until 5:30 p.m. During this time, patrons receive 20 percent off everything, excluding the lunch special and bottles of wine.
Market City Shopping Center
2919 Kapiolani Blvd., Honolulu
Daily 11 a.m.–10 p.m.