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Step Up to the Plate

YuZu Ala Moana

By Lynsey Beth Futa Photos By Bodie Collins
May 6, 2015

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Lobster Nabe-yaki Udon ($18.95, special menu item available starting Mother's Day)

Lobster Nabe-yaki Udon ($18.95, special menu item available starting Mother’s Day)

Like the bright yellow citrus fruit, YuZu Ala Moana encompasses all that is fresh, vibrant and tasty. With menu items such as Lotus Root Pizza ($8.95), which features grilled lotus root smothered in four different types of cheese, and Temari Sampler ($14.95, 6 pieces), which includes round-shaped sushi, fashioned after the colorful temari ball of Japanese culture, YuZu is introducing Japanese cuisine in an innovative and delicious way. Although tucked away in Ala Moana Hotel, the eatery’s patrons still are made up of mostly local diners. Treat Mom to Lobster Nabe-yaki Udon, a special menu item available starting on Mother’s Day, May 10.

The dashi (soup broth) is clean and flavorful, having been infused with slivers of yuzu. In celebration of Mom’s special day, a lobster claw is added, as well as kabocha (pumpkin) tempura, instead of the usual shrimp tempura (YuZu Nabe-yaki Udon, $14.95). Won bok, chives, Shiitake mushrooms, Tokyo negi (green onions) and kamaboko (fishcake) are added to bring color and earthiness to the dish. The udon noodles are cut fresh every day to ensure quality in each slurp. The boiling udon is served in a stone pot, so that diners are able to enjoy the dish at its peak temperature throughout the entire meal. Mr. Kubota gives diners hope by reassuring that if the Mother’s Day udon does well, he will put the item on the regular menu. Fingers crossed.

YuZu Ala Moana

Ala Moana Hotel, Kona Tower
410 Atkinson Drive, Honolulu
943-1155

Monday-Saturday,
1:30 a.m.-2 p.m. (lunch)

Daily, 5-6 p.m. (happy hour)
and 5-10 p.m. (dinner)