Going All Out With Surf And Turf
Many of us try to stick to health-conscious diets in general, making an effort to eat well throughout the week, but on those special occasions when we get to go out for a nice meal, let’s face it — nobody wants to be stuck ordering from the salad section of the menu alone.
Dining out on the town awards us the opportunity to step away from the norm and indulge our wildest cravings with all the dazzling dishes offered in restaurant settings — most of which we wouldn’t be able to make for ourselves at home.
Nothing embodies the idea of maximizing your dining experience better than a surf-and-turf extravaganza, so I’m here to tell you: It’s time to live it up with some luxurious beef and lobster! Plus, you wouldn’t want to miss out on the following chefs’ stunning handlings of this classic combo.
LAND AND SEA
You don’t have to hold back when enjoying flavorful bites from both land and sea at 3660 on the Rise. Chef de cuisine Lydell Leong agrees whole-heartedly, saying, “You get a little bit of both worlds with meat and seafood, and sometimes when you can’t make up your mind, surf and turf allows you to have both without ordering two separate dishes.”
At 3660, Land and Sea ($59; can substitute NY steak for additional charge) comes with the added benefit of an unmatched flavor profile. Rather than simply seasoning each component of the dish, Leong excites taste buds with a complex mix of island-inspired flavors true to the eatery’s Euro-Island-cuisine identity.
In fact, this entree graces us with two distinct presentations — each a delicious dish in its own right — on one plate. First, bite into fire-roasted beef tenderloin infused with soy, sugar, sesame, ginger and Sichuan peppercorns from the earliest stages of marination. Grilled to order, the tender slab is further enhanced with a mushroom-laced sauce made richer with the marinade liquid. For the finishing touch, a balancing note of house-made yuzu hollandaise brightens it all up.
Switching gears to another palate-pleasing bite, the lobster portion of the dish highlights 4 ounces of Maine-sourced seafood that “swims in a butter braise,” as Leong puts it, during the cooking process. Just when you thought it couldn’t get more indulgent, the lobster is served in a thick Hatcho Miso nage, or broth, which is just as velvety as the buttery seafood itself.
“This is our version of surf and turf,” Leong adds. “It’s very tasty; it’s got a lot of layers and flavors going on.”
If you fall in love with this mix of tenderloin and lobster, you also can enjoy it as part of the Weekday Three Course Dinner Special, available Tuesday-Friday for $57. From April 18 to 23, take advantage of 40 percent off wine bottles (see coupon on page 15), and be sure to ask your server about new menu items as well. Last, but not least, it’s not too early to make your reservations for 3660’s Mother’s Day brunch buffet.
3660 on the Rise
3660 Waialae Ave., Kaimuki
GRILLED TO THRILL
One of the latest restaurants to garner attention for its first-rate steak and seafood is Harbor Restaurant at Pier 38, which, after opening last year, has quickly become known for its Spanish-made Brasa oven-grills. The unique kiawe-charcoal-burning appliances offer the perfect balance of rustic, barbecue-style flavors presented in the relaxing atmosphere of an upscale eatery.
“Probably your backyard grill would be the closest flavor to (what we offer here),” explains executive chef Rob McDaniel. But unlike backyard grilling, McDaniel will do all the work for you, making his high-quality ingredients reach culinary perfection through a kiss from the Brasa ovens.
“I try to get the food to be its own flavor. I don’t want to cover it up with a bunch of stuff; (for instance), I don’t have A.1. Steak Sauce here,” says the chef. “There’s a unique flavor that comes out of those ovens that I want to showcase.”
That smoky yet juicy char is imparted onto Center Cut New York Steak and Lobster Tail ($65), which was added to the menu after proving popular as a Valentine’s Day special. This hefty dish offers abundant portions for a great deal — so you can feel good about devouring the whole thing.
“It’s a 16-ounce steak, and our lobster tails aren’t the tiny ones you get at most places. I’m using an 8-10 ounce lobster tail, so you get a pound and a half of protein on your plate,” says McDaniel. “Coupled with the view (of the harbor) and level of service that we have here, it’s phenomenal.”
I’ll leave you with one more tip for treating yourself to the extraordinary meal you deserve: Start this feast off with Brasa Mushroom with Egg ($12), offering grill-oven perfected cremini mushrooms served on a sizzling skillet with Parmesan cheese. At the table, an egg is mixed into the pupu for extra richness. Also be on the lookout for scrumptious specials, as McDaniel always is switching them up.
Harbor Restaurant at Pier
38 1129 N Nimitz Hwy., Honolulu