Don’t sacrifice tasty food this bikini seasonColumns What's Cooking?
June 14, 2015
Story By: Lynsey Beth Futa | Photos by: Anthony Consillio
We all want to eat what tastes good, and if it’s also healthy, then that’s simply a plus. At Ahi & Vegetable, owner Sam Seo and his team are doing just that, producing foods that not only please the taste buds, but that are good for the body, too. With summer here and diners now in search for lighter options, the eatery — with two locations in Kapalama Shopping Center and Fort Street Mall — delivers with a myriad of dishes that includes fresh fish and vegetables perfect to fulfill your summer cravings, sans the muffin top.
A great option for vegetarians, Tofu Salad with Sea Asparagus ($10) may sound daunting, but the silkiness of the tofu, mixed with each crunchy bite of sea asparagus creates a harmonious dish of fresh flavors. “I thought I’d give sea asparagus a try, and now I strongly recommend it to my customers. Even my employees; they’ve tried it and love it,” says Seo about the wiry, green ocean plant, which is similar to what locals know as limu. The upgraded tofu salad also is set on a bed of ro-maine lettuce with various salad dressing options sure to please everyone.
Looking for the “Ahi” in Ahi & Vegetable? Look no further than Sashimi Special ($16). Also laying on a bed of lettuce, colorful cuts of quality ahi tuna, salmon and hamachi are showcased. All fish is bought at the local fish auction and hand-cut at the restaurant. “Our main concept is to get fish from the auction; no middle man,” explains Seo. He also mentions that with the availability of fish constantly changing, prices fluctuate at the auction, and therefore at the restaurant as well. However, Seo comments on the sporadic price changes and says, “I’m very appreciative of my customers who understand,” and thus promises to “always have the freshest fish available.”
Seo and his team believe so much in freshness that everything is made-to-order, including Spicy Ahi & Ikura Combo ($12). “The No. 1 thing is we use fresh ahi with our own spicy sauce. We mix these two together only when someone orders it,” says Seo. The combo comes on a bed of rice — rice options include white, brown and sushi rice — with a generous dollop of ikura and pickled ginger.
Seo adds, “Bentos are our most popular item, and although it would be easier to pre-make them, we wait until someone orders before doing so.”
It’s been 11 years since the first Ahi & Vegetable opened at Fort Street Mall, and Seo has stuck with his determination to bring tasty, quality and healthy options to diners; and customers have responded to his dedication with loyalty and praise. So, if you’re looking for a delicious meal you won’t feel guilty about later, Ahi & Vegetable is the place to venture, with flat rate prices and pristine flavors in every bite.
Ahi & Vegetable
Kapalama Shopping Center
1210 Dillingham Blvd., Kalihi
Daily, 10 a.m.-8 p.m.