Top-notch roast pork, pupu party platters for the win
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If you ever wondered what happened to the landmark Kwok’s Chop Suey in Kaimuki, it’s still there. Well, sort of. It’s now known as Hung Won Seafood Restaurant, renamed by the Lee family who took over the restaurant in the mid 1990s and eventually sold it in 2013. The establishment changed ownership once more before being purchased by current owners Kevin Li, his uncles Guan Qiang Ruan and Ju Wei Ruan and cousin Janice Ouyang.
“It’s our one-year anniversary this month,” says Li proudly. “Business has been over our expectations. We have a lot of loyal, repeat customers and it continues to grow. We offer good, quality food, friendly service and a convenient location.”
Serving authentic Cantonese-style food, Hung Won Seafood Restaurant continues to be a neighborhood favorite. Li’s uncles, who also serve as chefs, have many years of experience in the kitchen, including about 19 years at the original Panda Cuisine.
“Our food is a bit healthier (compared to other restaurants) because we try to stay away from a lot of oil and heavy seasonings,” notes Li.
“Also, our specialty is roast meat. The skin is crispy, the meat is tender and it tastes good.
“Also, what sets our meat apart is the way we marinate it in our homemade mix of seasonings, spices and sauces (which is about a day process). People come from all over the Island for our roast meat, and they even bring it to the Neighbor Islands.”
Late last year, Hung Won Seafood Restaurant started offering a regular order of the Pupu Platter party tray, which consists of Char Siu, Roast Pork and Gau Gee ($14.95), which is a great way for diners to sample a little of everything. The Pupu Platter party tray, which Li says is very popular for potlucks, especially during football season, is priced at $28 (small), $42 (medium), $56 (large) and $78 (extra-large).
Hung Won also offers daily specials, including newer items — that can’t be found on the menu — but have done so well that they’re available all the time upon request. One of them being Bitter Melon with Barbecue Pork in Black Bean Sauce ($9.95), which Li says is not found at many Chinese restaurants.
“We think it’s a good combination of our homemade black bean sauce and barbecue ribs, because the ribs are roasted first and then cooked with the sauce and bitter melon,” he explains.
Another off-the-menu must-try is Abalone with Black Mushroom in Oyster Sauce ($13.95), which was introduced to patrons a few months ago.
Located at 3434 Waialae Ave. in the heart of Kaimuki, Hung Won Seafood also offers takeout and catering options, and customers are welcome to BYOB (no corkage fee. Free parking also is available in the front and side of the restaurant.
Hung Won Seafood Restaurant
3434 Waialae Ave.
10 a.m.-9 p.m. daily